While the majority of your business takes place on the open road, your limousine or livery operation likely still has an office or dispatch center, where staff members utilize limo reservation software and limo dispatch software to send drivers out on assignments.
One notable cost associated with running an office – especially if you are a small or startup company – is energy. The weather can be extreme in this country, with many areas experiencing long cold winters and hot humid summers. Extreme weather drives up the cost of heating and cooling, and that's not to mention the day to day costs of general electricity use.
Thankfully, there are a number of ways to use energy responsibly, in a cost-efficient and environmentally friendly way. So before you run that ac unit all summer long or keep the heating on high this winter, check out the list of five energy saving tips below:
1. HVAC maintenance
Your office will likely have a HVAC system that provides climate control throughout the year. Your HVAC system will be especially busy if your operation is located in a particularly warm or cold part of the nation. Given that HVAC systems are often working continuously, it's easy for them to suffer damage, wear or just generally become less efficient, which in turn could be costing you money. An effective solution, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration, is to reach a maintenance agreement with the HVAC provider. Such a contract means that an inspector will come out and assess your system before the summer and winter months to ensure that it's working properly. For this small fee you can make sure that you save a significant amount of money in the long run.
2. Keep lights off
It can be tempting to keep certain lights on, especially at night to ward off criminals. It's also likely that you have a few employees that are more than a little forgetful when it comes to turning off lights. But as Small Business Trends pointed out, turning off lights is one of the easiest ways to start making a dent in that energy bill. A great way to make sure that lights go off when necessary is to install a lighting system that turns on and off automatically when people walk in and out.
3. Switch off equipment
While this perhaps isn't practical during the week, make sure that all of your electronics – computers, printers, microwaves in the kitchen – are switched off, at the wall, over the weekend and especially on holidays, Conserve Energy Future argued. This is because even though a computer may be switched off, it still uses energy if it's plugged into the wall.
4. Keep temperatures reasonable
Just because it's boiling hot outside doesn't mean that your office needs to turn into the Arctic. Similarly, if it's cold out you don't necessarily need to crank the heat up to tropical levels. Select a temperature that is reasonable and then ask staff to dress accordingly. For example, an extra layer may be needed in the winter to stave off the chill and conversely your dress code may need to be relaxed in the summer, to accommodate for the warmer temperatures. An ideal room temperature is around 70 degrees Fahrenheit – anything higher or lower, in any season, can add to your bill. Indeed, Conserve Energy Future noted that by adjusting your temperature by just one degree higher or lower than normal – contingent on the season – can save you almost 10 percent on your bill each year.
5. Keep windows closed
This should be a no brainer, but you'd be surprised how many employees will crack open the window for some fresh air. When your HVAC system is running, ensure that all windows remain closed at all times. Loss of heat and cool air through windows makes your system work harder, using more energy in the process, subsequently placing a strain on both the environment and your wallet.