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If you don’t know is it your fault?

By Duncan Everett, Managing Director at Optimal Monitoring

Nobody wants to fail but often the fear of failure can get in the way of success. So how do you break the ‘better to do nothing than fail’ barrier?

In Energy Management we are often trapped in this dilemma, stuck somewhere between the challenges of our peers not being able to visualise the waste around them and when they are made aware of it, the fear that admitting they know why will get them into trouble.

With the application of AI it has become cost effective to uncover more issues, so our next challenge is how to get past the fear people have that they may get the blame for these issues and get them to help us fix them.

Many will remember the corporate ‘suggestions box’ of the 80’s and 90’s, designed to allow all to highlight a way to do things better. We need to bring that culture of ‘we are in it together’ into the energy space. For any business the fact that an issue is discovered and resolved is a positive and will have a positive impact far wider than saving some money off the utility bill.

So how do we solve this?

Firstly, we must treat every discovery and resolution as a success for the future, not a failure of the past.

Human-centered design is also critical to the platforms and processes, not just in that the tools are easy to use, but also they recognise the contribution of the users. Success comes by satisfying the ‘what’s in it for me devil sitting on all of our shoulders’.

Simple techniques we can learn from gamification, where points are awarded for success, will help instil this ethos. Making it easy to play the game is also critical as is letting people know the game being played and their part in it. Keep the information simple and ensure that the ‘players’ are engaged in the process as well as rewarded for success.

Using technology, it is possible to cost effectively manage many more buildings. To succeed however something still must be done. To make that cost effective you will need to enlist the help of everyone within the organisation in the process. For this everyone needs to be part of the solution and we need to listen to the collective knowledge of everyone.

Using AI we can have systems listen to the suggestions of users and measure the value of actions taken by them. It is possible to use this process to automatically expand the capabilities of such systems, by learning from their users, something we have included within our EMMA AI platform. Users are part of the process, not outside of it.

The result is that everyone wins, the business gets lower consumption, users get the satisfaction of being part of the process, and Energy Managers get much closer to their carbon commitment.

Win! Win! Win!

If you would like to know more you can contact Duncan on 020 7439 9259, email or contact Optimal Monitoring on 014 944 35106.

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