• Ashok Ranadive

Energy Management - Benchmarking and Targeting

Updated: Jul 22

One of the most prominent principles used in business management & process control handbooks goes like this –

“You cannot manage what you cannot measure”


We know it’s a standard expression and sounds pretty cliché, but that’s simply because it’s true. It’s also brilliant advice for businesses aiming to cut down energy costs and greenhouse emissions. In order to improve your energy performance, you will first need a detailed and accurate measurement of your energy use. If you can monitor where, when and how much energy you’re spending, it will be easier for you to control your plant’s energy situation. Simply put, you can’t begin to manage, let alone change, something that you don’t have enough info about.


That being said, monitoring is only the first stepping stone in the journey to becoming #energyefficient.


Energy benchmarking and targeting have garnered growing acclaim among business owners as effective tools of energy management that use recorded energy figures to set new standards of performance or upgrade existing ones. The benchmarking and targeting process has been so effective that it has shown significant reductions in annual energy costs in various industrial sectors from 5% to 30% of the total annual energy consumption.


If you have a regular benchmarking strategy in place, then you’re already assured of its value. For businesses that are new to or sceptical of the concept, we’ve curated a list of what it entails, why it’s necessary for you and how you can realize your energy efficiency goals with it.

What is the scope of Benchmarking & Targeting?

Energy benchmarking involves measuring a building’s energy performance and comparing it with predefined values, industry norms, the building’s past records or other buildings of similar nature. Benchmarking allows you to generate an energy progress report of your building by quantifying energy consumption, energy costs, and emissions. The technique regards all plant & building utilities such as refrigeration systems, thermal systems, heating applications, air conditioning and water as manageable resources in the same way that raw materials, finished products, building occupancy, personnel and capital are managed.


Energy benchmarking can be:

  • Internal – when you measure your building’s performance against its own previous performance or against other buildings in your portfolio, and

  • External – when you match your building’s performance with peer groups and competitors.

Once energy usage is closely monitored, business or property owners can clearly determine whether they are performing at a level that is highly efficient, unsatisfactory, or anywhere in between. Key areas in need of improvement can then be used as the basis to set targets and implement remedial actions. Targeting should be regarded as an ongoing project, with timely revisions when goals are achieved and investigations when efforts fall short.


Why is benchmarking and targeting necessary?

1. It is required

One of the reasons you may need to start benchmarking is that several state and central regulations have made it mandatory for your building or facility to meet certain standards. As the world fortifies its defences against climate change, you will be required to disclose and upgrade energy-related practices as responsible business owners.


2. Increase efficiency, profitability


Even if you’re not required by law, it is still rewarding for you to set up a benchmarking and targeting routine. Through the continuous appraisal of internal and external data, you can keep pace with operational inefficiencies and cut down energy costs for increased profitability.


3. Acquire credibility, funding


With targeted efforts to improve your energy performance, you can attract investments and greater credibility as an eco-conscious business. You can participate in green building certification programs and various environmental projects.


Energy benchmarking is fairly complex and time-consuming, especially if you have a large assembly of industrial equipment to manage. It’s also crucial to understand that energy benchmarking and targeting are not independent and linear but interconnected, continuous and dynamic processes that feed each other. So businesses like yours should consider investing in an energy management system (EnMS) that helps you implement a benchmarking routine to set goals and track their performance over time.

We can help you out!

Enerlly is a cloud-based, automated energy management system that provides solutions to support your organization’s benchmarking and targeting strategy. With advanced IoT technology, Enerlly’s interactive platform allows you to capture data in real-time to generate actionable insights into your plant’s performance. Your business is able to identify energy-saving opportunities and operate at levels of energy efficiency that are mandated or generally accepted in the industry.


Enerlly makes it easier for you to measure and analyze energy performance and empowers you to make smarter energy decisions. Achieve industry benchmarks and organizational targets for sustained growth and big energy savings today!