ESOS Phase 2 – Energy Audits and ESOS Compliance

The Energy Savings Opportunities Scheme – ESOS Phase 2 energy audits and compliance

With energy efficiency becoming an ever-increasingly important topic in light of continuing warnings over climate change, it’s no surprise that the UK Government is rolling out the energy savings opportunities scheme (ESOS) in an attempt to meet its target for reduced carbon emissions. Now with the ESOS Phase 2 reporting deadline approaching in December 2019, here’s a quick guide to ESOS, whether or not it applies to your business or organisation, energy audits and ESOS compliance.

ESOS advice from the energy efficiency experts…

Here at Hawley Energy Group, our truly independent advice has helped many businesses to reduce their energy use and related costs over the years – and we’re here to guide you through ESOS and ensure your compliance.

Firstly, ESOS is mandatory for businesses that either:

  • Have 250+ employees
  • Have an annual turnover of €50m+ and annual balance sheet of €43m+

It also applies to some NFPs, trusts and partnerships where there’s an element of trade or business involved with their activities – we can offer our advice if you’re unsure.

All qualifying businesses are required to have an energy efficiency audit carried out every 4 years. This is to identify any cost-effective energy saving opportunities, must be conducted by a qualified energy assessor and applies to the organisation’s buildings, industrial processes and transport efficiency.

The benefits of acting on your ESOS energy audit

While the undertaking of an energy efficiency audit may be mandatory, implementing the identified recommendations and measures isn’t.

However, while that may be the case, when faced with the facts and figures on paper, it’s expected that most businesses will see the financial benefits of putting any recommended changes in place. Additionally, from a reputational point of view, nobody wants to be highlighted by the Environment Agency as a business that doesn’t care about its carbon footprint.

With a non-compliance fine of up to £50,000, not only is an energy audit essential for ESOS compliance, but following through with the suggested strategies could reap you big business savings in the long run.

Our ESOS energy efficiency auditing services

We’ve heard some concerns raised about ESOS by some of our clients, mainly in regards to it being used as a way to push expensive technology on businesses, along with complaints of expensive compliance procedures – but we promise a different approach.

At Hawley, we’ve developed a simple but comprehensive compliance framework without expensive pre-audit surveys or monitoring systems. When it comes to ESOS Phase 2 compliance, we promise quality energy audits that target tangible savings for your business – so if you need our help, please give us a call on 0333 8000771.

Commercial LED Lighting Design – Our Tips

Commercial LED lighting design tips

As commercial LED lighting design and installation experts we’ve developed systems for all kinds of businesses, creating carefully considered designs for offices, warehouses, retail premises and much more. Every system needs to be developed according to each client’s specific needs, so if you’re thinking of upgrading to commercial LED lighting, take a look at these tips first…

The benefits of good LED lighting design

Before we guide you through the design process and considerations, let’s take a quick look at the benefits of installing commercial LED lighting – many of which also apply to domestic applications too:

•   Superior performance
•   Low maintenance
•   Lower cost – up to 80% more efficient than traditional lighting
•   Better working environment
•   Increased staff productivity
•   More control

Getting the best LED lighting design for your business

You may think that designing an LED lighting system is pretty much just a case of swapping bulbs and fittings, and perhaps adding a few extras here and there. But to ensure the design gives you the best results, you need to consider the following…

Look at the working plane

The starting point of any commercial LED lighting design is to take a look at the working plane. This ‘bird’s eye view’ of your space allows you to see all areas clearly, helping you to identify areas that require extra lighting, areas that are busy/heavily used, and areas that may already have good natural illumination.

The function of your business

How does your business operate? What is its function? Are you only open during regular business hours, or do you have staff onsite all the time, working shifts? Do you have office spaces where you may need better lighting for staff working at computers? Or do you use machinery or equipment that may need improved illumination for ease of working, or even health and safety?

Think about who’s responsible for locking up, processes for shutting off lights, and areas where your lighting needs may differ due to the functions of your overall operational requirements.

Function of the building

Even if you own your business premises, you may sub-lease or share areas with other companies, residents or retail outlets. You may be a landlord with lots of different tenants to consider, all of whom may have different ideas about lighting.

Essentially, if you own the property but don’t actually manage each individual area, you need to ensure that you have some level of control even when you’re not there. For example, if you rent out storage space, it’s probably a good idea to consider PIR motion sensors, so that lights aren’t left on when these areas aren’t in use. You want to get the maximum energy efficiency benefits from your lighting installation, so you need to look at the building overall, and how each different space is utilised.

Current facilities, structure and materials

The fabric and facilities of your building can have a significant influence on your LED lighting design and installation, so we need to create a ‘map’ of what we’re working with, so we can identify what products we can use and any installation accommodations we need to make.

For example, if you have asbestos present in your building, we’ll try to find an alternative lay-out so that this remains undisturbed, or we may advise getting a specialist in to safely remove it prior to the lighting install – which will have an impact from an investment point of view.

Also, if you have false ceilings in situ, solid ceiling, beams, brick or stone walls we can source suitable products to fit in with your building structure and aesthetics.

Quality of products

We all know that there’s such a thing as false economy, but when you’re faced with differing quotes and you’re about to part with a lot of money, it can be tempting to go with the cheapest option – but we highly recommend that you put quality ahead of price in this instance.

Many cheaper quotes for commercial LED lighting installations will include budget products that have been manufactured overseas to fairly low standards. Unfortunately, they’re prone to fail much faster than better quality alternatives plus can be less energy efficient, which can increase maintenance needs and ongoing costs. Most of the LED products we use are made here in the UK and fully lab tested, giving you plenty performance and better value overall.

Return on investment

Last but by no means least, you need to think about the return on investment that your new LED lighting design will represent – and this means getting a full breakdown of the figures, not just vague promises of increased efficiency.

Our energy and lighting experts will take the time to show you exactly how – and when – your installation will pay for itself, along with the subsequent benefits it will deliver in ongoing energy costs.

We work on the basis of providing a tangible ROI within 2 to 3 years, so it won’t be long before the design and installation has paid for itself!

If you’d like any more information regarding commercial LED lighting design, or would like to arrange for a consultation and site survey, please either call us on 0333 8000771 or email us and we’ll be happy to help

Energy Efficient Lighting for Businesses

Save your business money with energy efficient lighting

Reducing overheads and costs is essential for any business, but while many focus on direct costs, there are substantial savings to be made from your indirect costs too – so let’s take a look at why you should consider switching to energy efficient lighting, and how to do it effectively.

Reducing energy costs

As you’re almost certainly aware, energy costs have a nasty habit of rising, so it makes sense to mitigate some of these increasing overheads before they arrive – while also saving money on your current tariff.

Some smaller businesses feel that energy efficiency measures don’t really apply to them, especially if they operate from a shop or small office – but that doesn’t have to be true with good advice.

Lower LED lighting costs

If you’re thinking of installing LED lighting solutions within your business, there’s never been a better time to invest. Increasing demand has driven down prices, giving you a great opportunity to take advantage now that costs are dramatically lower.

Energy efficient lighting offers a genuine ROI

Whether you run a small, independent business or a larger multi-site operation, the cost of installing an energy efficient lighting system will pay for itself over time. An LED lighting installation cost is always going to be proportionate to the size of your premises, so you only pay for what you need – and as soon as the system is switched on and in use, you start saving money!

To put some figures to it, we recently worked with the UK’s largest wholesaler, saving them around 22% on energy bills per store – such an impressive saving that it’s earned our partnership a place on the shortlist for a national award.

Sure, the savings may not always be quite this substantial, but we’re 100% confident that we can save you money with a bespoke energy efficient lighting installation – and if we can’t, we’ll be totally transparent.

Good design is crucial

To reduce your business energy bills with the help of LED lighting, it’s not just a case of swapping out some bulbs – you need a tailored design to deliver the maximum savings potential.

The type and frequency of use of the space and ‘zoning’ needs to be considered along with other functionality, such as auto switch-off sensors in rooms that are at risk of being unpopulated for long periods with the lighting all left blazing!

Independent energy saving advice

If you’re ready to install energy efficient LED lighting in your shop, offices or any other type of business premises, be aware of advisers who are aligned to one specific manufacturer – they’re financially incentivised to recommend their affiliated brand, which may not be the best one for your needs.

Here at Hawley Energy Group, we pride ourselves on being genuinely independent business energy advisers, so when you talk to us, we’ll give you straight-talking and completely honest advice on the best energy efficient lighting system for your specific requirements.

Business Energy Saving Tips – Expert Advice

5 brilliant business energy saving tips

If you’re looking for some easy-to-implement business energy saving tips, you’ve come to the right place. Our experts have extensive experience in advising businesses on how to reduce energy bills and their carbon footprint – great news for your bottom line and your corporate and social responsibility.

So if you’re a business owner or manager and you want to save your company money on energy bills by cutting down your electricity usage, just follow these tips…

Our top 5 energy saving tips for businesses

We’ve broken down our energy saving tips into 5 categories – and each offers a variety of ways to save on your business energy use:

1. Lighting – switching lights off when a room isn’t in use may seem fairly insignificant in terms of wasted cash, but in larger offices and units the cost of lighting can soon add up. Make sure staff are trained to switch off lights (when safe to do so), and you can even introduce measures such as automatic lighting systems so lights will come on when needed, and switch off when nobody’s around.

2. Heating and ventilation – there’s a lot of room for waste with these often complex systems, so that means opportunities for electricity savings too. Ensure your settings and controls are optimised to suit your business, that systems are well maintained to run at optimal efficiency, and introduce staff policies such as keeping external doors closed at all times to prevent unnecessary heat loss.

3. Air conditioning – whether for comfort or temperature control, most businesses spend large amounts of money on running air conditioning systems, so ensure yours are well managed. Check, set and maintain temperature controls and ensure regular maintenance. Don’t run it too hot or too cold, make sure it’s switched off overnight where possible and train staff in its effective and efficient use.

4. Information technology – just one computer monitor left running over night for a year can cost your business £20, so multiply that by the number of screens across your offices and buildings and you’ll start to get an idea of what they can represent in terms of cost and electricity savings. Now consider your other IT equipment, such as security systems and printers. Instil a culture of good practice within your business when it comes to switching off equipment when not in use – particularly overnight, but also lunchtimes and when the item isn’t needed during the working day. Check all systems are up-to-date and efficient, and consider automating controls to help with reductions.

5. Refrigeration systems – if you hold stock in refrigerated units, up to 40% of your business energy use could be tied up in these systems. Make sure doors are kept closed, lights switched off when not in use, don’t overload them through overstocking and keep them clean so they don’t have to take up any extra strain. As with the above points, always make sure staff are well trained in the efficient use of refrigeration systems.

We hope you found our business energy saving tips helpful, but if you’d like some bespoke, expert advice on reducing your business energy bills and saving money, please feel free to contact our friendly team.

What is building services design and why does it matter?

What is building services design and why does it matter?

Well thought out building services design is an essential step in any construction or building refurbishment/upgrade project – but what exactly is it, and how does it benefit you?

Essentially, building services design is the process of ensuring that your building is fully equipped for use, planning how the mechanical and electrical elements of your build come together to provide a comfortable, serviceable environment. But that’s not all…

With so many news items focusing on the debilitating effects of CO2 emissions and their connection to climate change, one of the key benefits of building services design nowadays is to install systems that reduce energy consumption and promote sustainability.

Effective building services design requires expert consultants and engineers – preferably who can also manage the installation and ongoing support for a consistent and quality service.


What does the building services design process cover?

Building services design can span a wide range of different services, but the most common aspects to this part of the construction/re-fit process are:

Mechanical services

  • Gas and electricity supplies
  • Renewable/solar energy systems
  • HVAC – heating, ventilation and air conditioning services
  • Escalators and lifts

Electrical services

  • Lighting design
  • Power, data and communication systems
  • Voltage optimisation
  • Security systems

Building services design and energy efficiency

Whether you’re building from scratch or looking to upgrade the mechanical and electrical services within your premises, there are lots of ways that a solid design can help to minimise energy use and associated costs.

For refurbishments, assessing and analysing the efficiency of your existing systems is the first step to identifying the best energy-saving technology. It may be that you require your lighting changing to LEDs, or having solar PV solutions installed to produce green energy on-site while minimising pollution. There are many different strategies that can be implemented, offering financial and environmental benefits that are well worth the initial investment.


The importance of independence

Like anything you invest in, building services design can vary greatly in quality. For the best results, it’s wise to find a provider who acts completely independently, so that you get the best mechanical and electrical engineering solutions for your requirements, not their profits.

Independent consultants and engineers will be able to compare all products and systems across the marketplace, rather than tying you into a potentially less efficient solution due to an existing affiliation.

Here at Hawley Building Services, we’re completely autonomous, ensuring an ethical and transparent service that has energy efficiency and exceptional performance as the focus at all times. Our turn-key services also means that you get everything you need from one trusted, reputable supplier – if you’d like to chat with one of our building services design experts without obligation, please call us on 0333 8000 771.