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When it Comes to Energy Management Services for Business, Who is Looking Out for the Little Guys?

June 24, 2013

Are small and mid-sized businesses being left out of the global race to improve energy efficiency? That’s the argument made by a recent article by Greentech Media.

And at first blush, the author may have a point. The article describes the glut of companies focused on energy management solutions for residential markets, and the handful of leaders who focus on very large commercial and industrial projects. But the small to mid-sized businesses (those with one to 500 employees) are not being courted by most energy management companies.

It’s easy to understand why that might be – there is significant variation in size, type and industry amongst businesses in this category, making an organized approach very difficult. What’s more, these types of businesses tend to be very price sensitive and may switch utility providers more often, which can be a barrier for utilities and energy management companies who would otherwise seek to partner over the long-term to strategically manage energy use.

So how do companies work with this critical market sector? An international study conducted by Accenture targeting utilitiy providers points to a few potential solutions utilities should consider. These ideas include tailoring their approach to include specific small-business offerings and rate plans, and finding ways to add value to their services by offering audits, bill alerts, energy monitoring and management hardware and software, etc.

These suggestions are good news for Trane, as it reinforces the approach we’ve always had when it comes to serving customers of all sizes and market segments.

As a leading global provider of indoor comfort solutions and services, Trane works with small and mid-sized businesses to identify their unique energy usage needs and create custom solutions that support their core business goals.

Because small and mid-size businesses are often more price sensitive than their larger counterparts, we start with an analysis of immediate and long-range strategic and financial goals to ensure that every efficiency investment is leading toward achieving a high performance building outcome. From initial audits to complete building performance analysis, Trane helps owners to leverage their buildings’ energy and operational savings to support their strategic objectives.

Once the decision to improve energy efficiency is made, it's critical that investments not be allowed to go to waste. For businesses of any size, the key to sustaining systems performance over a building’s lifetime is to implement alarms, monitoring, commissioning, measurement, verification and analysis. The benefits of taking a comprehensive approach are significant:

  • Reduced operating costs through energy management strategies
  • Improved employee productivity
  • Maximized occupant comfort
  • Increased flexibility to grow with building expansions or remodels, reducing installation time and costs
  • Reconciled operations for reliability with standard, pre-engineered and pre-tested applications
  • Simplified troubleshooting and monitoring either on-site or from a remote location

Click here to learn more about the Trane approach for small and mid-sized businesses.