50% of SMEs spend more on employees than on business energy, premises or technology
Our survey of 1000 SME business managers and owners shows that half of them spend more on their employees than they do on energy, technology or premises.
The survey asked respondents about their business energy use within the context of overall costs, as well as their general energy efficiency knowledge. It covered a range of sectors, including finance, distribution and hospitality. And respondents were from across the UK, including the South East, Scotland and the Midlands.
We found out that, after employees, technology was the biggest cost for 19% of respondents, while just 18% reported energy as their biggest cost. Premises were the major cost factor for 11% of business owners surveyed.
High demand for savings advice
However, 63% do want more advice from their energy suppliers on how to save energy. Respondents estimate that electrical devices and lighting use the most energy in their business (37%), with boilers (17%) and poor insulation (16%) coming in a distant second and third.
Less than one quarter use energy-saving bulbs
In terms of cost saving measures, one third (33%) of SMEs already have Smart meters, with another 36% saying they were considering installing the devices in order to save energy. While 37% of respondents believe that electrical devices and lighting use the most energy at work (as shown above), less than one quarter (24%) use energy saving light bulbs. And only 21% would consider using them in the near future.
In addition, 60% of SMEs are considering some form of solar installation (thermal or photovoltaic) as an energy saving measure. But 19% aren’t looking at any energy saving measures – perhaps because energy costs don’t considerably affect their bottom lines.
Top motivators for energy efficiency
Saving money (45%) and legal obligations (36%) were the main motivators for SMEs to become more energy efficient, reflecting the importance of the bottom line for all businesses. Although 23% of respondents did cite the environment as a motivating factor.
Take a look at the Business Energy Use infographic for an easy-to-read summary of the survey results.
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