How to reduce energy costs and improve efficiency

How to reduce energy costs and improve efficiency

Taking the time to review and reduce your business’s energy consumption – and therefore, how much you pay – is a task that can pay dividends today, and well into the future. 

There are two ways you can help lower your business’s energy bills: shopping around for a more competitive offer, and changing how and when you use energy.

With the following five tips, you can aim to do both and enjoy the best of both worlds:

1. Use energy at the right time.

Peak energy usage times come with a peak energy usage price. The reason for this is because when more people use energy, there’s more pressure on the energy grid, and that surge in demand translates to higher prices. The good news is, energy providers are quite upfront about the fact that they charge more or less for energy consumed at different times. Start by reviewing your business energy bill to see how much energy you consume, then identify energy hot spots throughout your business, so you can start looking to shift the timing of your highest impact energy-users.

2. Adjust your habits. 

A few small tweaks can make a massive difference. Some actions, like encouraging your employees to turn off lights or fans when a room is not in use; replacing appliances when they break with an energy-efficient version; or adopting energy-saving measures to adapt your energy consumption, can make a big difference on your bill. According to the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources (DISER), you could save $172 a year by getting rid of a second refrigerator, or $193 a year by switching appliances like kettles and microwaves off at the wall when not in use. 

3. Focus on lighting.

One of the biggest contributors to a business’s energy bill is lighting. As well as keeping them turned off when rooms are not in use, consider installing energy-efficient LEDs, which use far less energy than halogen bulbs, without compromising on quality. You could also set lighting to a sensor or timer, or install dimmer switches to further reduce energy consumption.

4. Set temperature bandwidths.

Combat the rising costs of power during winter and summer by being mindful about the energy you use, and how you use it. DISER confirms that for each degree heating or cooling is increased, energy use increases 5% to 10%. It’s recommended to set your heating thermostat to 18 to 20°C in winter, and around 25 to 27°C in summer, to avoid churning through too much power.

5. Shop around.

In addition to all of the above, you can make a powerful dent in your business’s energy bill by shopping around for a provider that delivers better value. Compare both electricity and gas retailers, depending on your needs and goals, and review different options such as time-of-use pricing, off-peak usage, or smart meters, to see if they could help you achieve greater energy efficiency throughout your business and save money at the same time. 

Are you paying too much for your energy bills? Let our team of experts review your energy bill to try and find you a plan that suits your needs and saves you money – contact us today.

The Great Resignation: Fact or Fiction

The Great Resignation: Fact or Fiction

Off the back of rolling lockdowns, many Australians have had time to contemplate exactly what they want from their working lives. As border closures added extra strain, by putting a temporary pause on skilled workers entering the country, talk of a Great Resignation began to dominate headlines.

But what is the driving force behind employees’ apparent discontent – and what are they truly looking for?

There are a number of factors at play, beginning with the pressure the pandemic has put on both businesses and employees over the past two years. Almost everyone was forced into constant problem-solving mode, and often, the solutions required ongoing compromise and flexibility. 

State- and territory-imposed vaccination rules put further pressure on the labour market, with forced business closures and ever-changing WFH rules adding an extra layer of uncertainty. 

It’s perhaps unsurprising then that a recent survey by The Adecco Group, which canvassed almost 15,000 office workers globally (including 1,000 located down under), found that Australians are the most burnt out office employees in the world – ahead of the US and the UK, Italy, China and Canada. 

More than half Australian survey respondents confirmed they’d suffered from burnout in the last 12 months, and around 52% said they’ve taken time off due to mental health concerns. 

Is burnout largely to blame? 

But it’s not just exhaustion that is prompting employees to look afield for opportunities. 

Another study by the Pew Research Center from March 2022 found there were three key reasons why people quit their jobs in 2021:

  • Low pay
  • A lack of advancement opportunities
  • Feeling disrespected at work.

ABS stats from last year confirm that upwards of 600,000 Australians plan to change their jobs by the end of 2022. If you want to avoid your employees being caught up in this exodus trend, one of your key considerations should be genuinely engaging with your team. 

One of the main reasons why Australians resign from a position is a perceived lack of career development or growth opportunities. Business owners or leaders keen to avoid being impacted by the Great Resignation trend should focus on building employee engagement through initiatives like annual remuneration reviews, tailored career development plans, and embracing processes and practices that invite feedback. Loyalty comes with genuine engagement, so encouraging open communication and ensuring your staff feel valued for their contribution is a great way to encourage them to stick around.

Improve your business efficiencies and learn how Make it Cheaper can help your business save time and money. 

Climate change and the 2022 federal election

Climate change and the 2022 federal election

Clean hydrogen, solar and wind farms, hydro, carbon capture and energy storage are the future of the green energy industry. 

But do the climate policies being taken to the next election by our two major parties align with this technology? And for business owners, how will the results of the next election impact them? 

What is Scott Morrison’s climate policy?

The Morrison Government has set an interim 2030 target of a 26-28% reduction on emissions levels, compared to 2005 levels. This ladders into their commitment to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 under its Long Term Emissions Reduction Plan.

Over the next decade, the government has pledged $20 billion of investment in low emissions technology, which it forecasts will unlock a further $60 billion of private investment.

The Government’s plan to reach net zero emissions by 2050 has been criticised for being light on detail as to how it will achieve this goal, while also failing to provide a clear pathway or policy for transitioning Australia’s economy. 

What is Labor’s climate policy?

The Federal Opposition Labor party’s climate policy aims to deliver lower electricity bills and lower emissions, with an emissions reduction target of 43% below 2005 levels by 2030. This is a much more ambitious target than the Liberal Party.

Labor’s 2030 commitment, if implemented in government, would satisfy Australia’s obligations under the Glasgow Climate Pact, which was agreed at COP26, and called on parties to “revisit and strengthen the 2030 targets in their nationally determined contributions as necessary to align with the Paris Agreement temperature goal by the end of 2022”.

Labor claims their modelling will unlock $52 billion in private investment and would cut the average annual household power bill by $275 by 2025.

What is the Greens climate policy?

Unsurprisingly, the Greens have the most aggressive climate policy of all. They have their sights set on a net zero or net negative Australian greenhouse gas emissions by 2035, if not sooner.

They point to Australia’s exports and domestic per capita pollution levels, which make it one of the largest contributors to the climate crisis. The Greens want to urgently reduce domestic greenhouse gas emissions to net negative, by actively supporting international efforts to remove global emissions from the environment and adapt to the impacts of the climate crisis.

Adam Bandt, leader of the Australian Greens and federal MP for Melbourne, says the party targets seats held by both major parties, because “as well as kicking the Liberals out, we need Greens in balance of power to keep Labor on track”.

What do these policies mean for businesses?

Whichever party gains or retains power at the next election, it’s clear that climate change and its consequences are increasingly driving consumer choices.

Research released in October 2021 found that 7 out of 10 consumers prefer products that don’t contribute to climate change, suggesting that businesses need to adopt eco-friendly practices and remain accountable for their contribution to pollution. 

Taking steps such as decarbonisation, adopting green energy where possible, changing behaviour, increased transparency around operations and committing to climate-related targets will all contribute towards building trust and market share.  

Is your energy consumption as green as it could be? If that’s part of your goals we’d love to help you find an energy plan that is kinder to the environment and offers great value for money – contact us today.

Energy Sales Consultant (Inbound)

This role will see you on the phone, assisting people who have asked for our help to save on their household or business energy costs. During your contact call you will take them through their energy savings options and ask them to agree to the energy contract option you have proposed.

Senior Program Manager

Make it Cheaper is on a journey to significantly change its business model, moving from a monoline energy comparison service heavily reliant on phone sales into a broader and deeper SME support resource that provides an easy and intuitive way for small business owners to manage the operation of their business delivered through a scale of voice to digital self-serve capabilities.

This is a significant and lengthy project that will involve restructuring all aspects of the business and as such requires rigorous program management to deliver successfully. It will span all workstreams of this transformational project and touch all aspects of the MiC business.