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Engage employees in workplace conservation

Getting employees on board with conservation is the key to making your company more energy efficient. Toronto Hydro has the tips and tools to help you get everyone engaged.


5 benefits of building an energy-saving culture


   Reduced operating and maintenance costs 

   Improved operational efficiency and profitability

   A healthier, safer and more comfortable workplace

   Increased communication and leadership among staff

  Public credibility as an environmentally responsible organization



STEP 1: Build your team


Your team is the ambassador of your awareness campaign. They will motivate, encourage and lead.


  • Start enthusiasm from the top

Have senior management show the bottom-line benefits of saving energy. Employees need to see how they ­– not just the organization – will be affected. For example, “If we save X amount of energy, that’s enough money to put towards Y.”


  • Choose your leader

Select someone who is enthusiastic, committed and dedicated to leading the team. They will develop the plan, manage the program and make key decisions at each phase.


  • Select your team members

Recruit a diverse committee from many departments – the more well-balanced the skills, the better equipped your team will be to run this awareness program.



 STEP 2: Set your goals

STEP 3: Understand your workplace



 What do you want to achieve by running this program?      Having a clear picture of the people and the environment in which they work will help you determine what tools, tactics and messages will have the most impact.


·        Establish a clear vision

Set a specific objective in order to develop a plan and measure its success. For example, your goal could be to:

·        Who is your primary audience?

Likely these are the employees of your organization.

o   Reduce annual energy use by X per cent

o   Generate energy-efficiency ideas

o   Build a conservation culture

·        Who is your primary audience?

Suppliers, media, visitors, the local community and the public may not be involved in your day-to-day operations but may also adjust their behaviour.

·        Who is your primary audience?

Are there multiple locations in your organization? Are the facilities large, small or old? What types of operations exist? Are there many visitors?


STEP 4: Develop your communications plan

What you say - and how you say it - is vital to inspiring everyone to participate in energy-saving strategies.

·        Determine key messages

Position your message to include core benefits for employees (i.e. “What’s in it for me?”). Here are some tips:

o   Get to the point – be brief, informative

o   Emphasize the benefits of saving energy

o   Give simple, specific examples of how to save

o   Avoid negativity or blame for wasted energy  

o   Reinforce the value of teamwork


  ·        Identify your tools

There are many ways to reach employees, but some tools may be better suited to a specific audience. Here are a few ideas that work well:


·        Map out a schedule and budget

Launch your awareness campaign in phases, to keep the momentum going. Once the schedule is set, you can prepare a budget to cover:

·         Communications

·         Promotional materials

·         Food and catering

·         Administrative expenses

·         Awards and prizes

  • ·         Guest speakers
  • ·         Support staff
  • ·         Entertainment
  • ·      Equipment rentals


STEP 5: Implement the program

  • Track your progress

See which tools and activities generate the most interest. What’s working? What’s not? Get feedback from employees and adjust your plan as needed.

  • Measure your success

Is the program meeting your goals and objectives? Monitor the progress of energy-efficiency measures at regular intervals to see if any difference has been made.

  • Celebrate, learn and share

Share results with your team, employees and management to let them know their efforts have been worthwhile. For example, “In 3 months, we’ve saved X kWh –that’s nearly $YY.”


   Tools and resources

 Energy tips for every business


  • Posters
  • Stickers
  • Leak Tag Kit
  • Restaurants, Cafes, Fast Food
  • Offices 
  • Schools
  • Hotels & Motels
  • Condos & Apartments
  • Builders & Contractors
  • Retail
  • Healthcare
  • Industrial