Energy management in the digital age

Roy Chikballapur

March 16, 2022

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Many companies across Europe are facing regulations and law changes to improve the energy management efficiency of their production in the coming months and years. The changes that need to be made require practical solutions, which can be found in the form of digitalization and smart software.

Energy efficiency has long been a topic of interest for manufacturing companies across the globe. Everyone recognizes the need to cut energy usage and drastically reduce wasteful spending of both electricity and gas, either from a financial or a climate protection standpoint. In Germany and elsewhere in the EU, regulations to promote sustainable behaviour from companies are to come into force in 2023, with mandatory reporting to start in 2024. These regulations affect over 40,000 companies in Europe, who all need to act in a timely manner and as cost-effective as possible. However, the time to make these changes is running out and not enough has been done. While energy prices have gone up greatly in 2021, recent geopolitical developments have contributed to an even steeper increase in energy prices and reinforced the idea that the time to act is now. 

Manufacturing companies across Europe are running out of options, as the lengthy process of undertaking projects to improve energy efficiency may not be an option any more. The timeline to deliver results spans over weeks, not months, and while the best way to achieve energy efficiency requires a combination of  both hardware and software, the supply chain crisis has put a brake on initiatives to retrofit production equipment with intelligent sensors and the like. Companies should avoid getting lost in the maze of buzzwords like IoT and Industry 4.0 and keep their focus on the matter at hand, before the decision to act and how to act is taken away for good. The need of the hour is to focus on practical solutions that deliver results quickly:

  • Investing in software for energy monitoring, where meter readings can be acquired either via connected meters, if already installed, or by manual entry, as well as energy analytics that can help companies identify which equipment and processes are consuming more energy than they should be. 

  • By adopting intelligent maintenance solutions and adding energy efficiency objectives to the list of maintenance goals that today focus more on preventing equipment outages. This would benefit companies both financially, and in the context of the climate change regulations.

  • Often, the amount of energy that is actually being consumed is an abstract concept to people and appears like a fixed number that cannot be changed, but sensitizing users to conserve energy, to turn off their computers, to turn off lights and heating can go a long way. One way to do so is by measuring and communicating  how much energy is being spent in “standby” (i.e) when the office/factory is closed or not operating. 

At Facterra, we have been working on this topic over the last 6 months and are proud to launch APM for Energy Management - with the Energy Management capabilities - including energy monitoring, energy analytics and facilities management capabilities  incorporated into our cloud-based maintenance software, we can now help our customers easily reduce energy consumption by 10-30%. We recognize that no two companies, no two industrial facilities, have the same challenges. Get in touch with us to find out how we can help you cut your bills and the carbon emissions in your manufacturing facilities.


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