5 Useful Insights Gained from an Effective Energy Savings Cost Reduction Program

After the successful rollout of the BAYweb Cloud EMS intelligent energy management system to its entire network of stores, one national retailer gained valuable insights that serve as useful guidance to other companies operating multiple locations who are seeking to reduce their energy and maintenance costs:

  1. The importance of careful pilot testing: Key to the success of the final implementation was the early pilot test conducted at the beginning of the relationship between the retailer and BAYweb. A small number of stores were chosen for the pilot, each store representative of a larger subset of store configurations in its chain—by square footage, temperature zone location, site location (mall or detached), etc. Upon implementation, the retailer established accurate baseline energy use data for each store, compiled this data into BAYweb Cloud EMS, then used the BAYweb control system to fine tune temperature set points for each location. The energy use analysis capabilities of the BAYweb control system enabled the retailer to measure and compare actual energy savings against each store's prior baseline energy usage.

  2. Energy use determined by data can create efficiency: As more stores were added to the pilot in a staged rollout, the facilities management team stressed the importance of "letting the data talk:" They used the data collected in BAYweb Cloud EMS to drive each decision on temperature set points, adjustment of energy use profiles based on seasonal changes, extreme temperature changes, and other factors affecting each store's energy utilization.

  3. System flexibility allows management to optimize their energy use: The retailer's facilities management team found that the flexibility of BAYweb Cloud EMS was an important feature in its large, geographically diverse network of store locations in vastly different climate zones. For example, thermostat set point control for heating was the most valuable feature for stores in colder locations in the Northeast and Midwest; for stores in the hotter South and Southwest, the retailer gained the most financial benefit from BAYweb HVAC monitoring of each location's air conditioning units.

  4. HVAC monitoring changes financial assumptions: The ability to monitor every HVAC unit in its network to pre-emptively repair underperforming units at a fraction of the cost of letting each unit "run to failure" has given this retailer a whole new insight into its annual maintenance costs. The company no longer has to establish a large reserve for maintenance expenses in its annual budget.  Instead, it can project a much lower maintenance cost estimate, now based on accurate HVAC runtime performance data collected in BAYweb Cloud EMS.

  5. Managing the installation is a significant component of the overall energy management system implementation: According to the facilities management team, managing the right installation partners for the project, to ensure cost-effective, on-time installation is a significant component of the overall energy management implementation.