Energy is a critical component to your organization’s operations. It’s important to realize that energy is something that can be managed and controlled; it’s not a fixed overhead cost. Energy management helps to reduce your organization’s energy costs through improved energy performance and optimized use of energy sources and energy-related assets. No matter how large or small your organization, implementing some form of energy management can be a key step to save energy, cut costs, and stay competitive.
Energy management is a culture for continual improvement of energy performance and efficiency that’s integrated within an organization’s normal business practice. It positions an organization to achieve energy and cost savings through informed decision making and the implementation of energy saving practices for facilities, processes, equipment and operations.
Organizations of all types, including commercial, industrial, and government facilities, can most effectively manage their energy by implementing an energy management program. The benefits of energy management include:
- Improved profits
- Reduced energy costs
- Improved processes
- Reduced emissions
- Reduced risk to energy price fluctuations
Implementing an energy management program will help your organization ensure these benefits are continuous, rather than one-time results. Given today’s increasingly competitive global market, proactively and strategically managing energy can be vital to your organization’s long-term success. Learn how the DOE eGuide can help.
No matter how large or small your organization, implementing some form of an energy management program is a key step to saving energy, cutting costs, and staying competitive. This DOE eGuide is designed to help organizations from all sectors (industrial, commercial, government, institutional, etc.) establish an energy management program that systematically improves organizational energy performance. The eGuide gives users step-by-step guidance for energy management program implementation, customized to your organization’s level of familiarity with energy management.
If your organization is just starting with energy management, eGuide is designed to help you establish a systematic approach to energy management and energy performance improvement. The eGuide is also designed to help your organization pursue implementation of the ISO 50001 energy management standard or achieve certification to the Superior Energy Performance® (SEP™) program. The eGuide emphasizes a systematic, continual improvement approach to energy management that follows the proven Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) management structure.
Using the PDCA management structure, the eGuide leads users through DOE’s 5 Steps to Energy Management:
- Engage Management
- Plan for Energy Management
- Implement Energy Management
- Measure and Check Results
- Review for Continual Improvement
Within each of these 5 core elements are steps and tasks to be completed. The eGuide emphasizes a team approach, empowering your organization to create an energy management team to accomplish tasks using guidance information, implementation aids, and other resources. The eGuide Status Tracker keeps track of collective team progress.
Learn more about which part of eGuide is right for you.
The DOE eGuide provides three levels from which to choose for implementing or advancing your energy management program. Read below to determine which of these three levels is the right starting point for your organization:
New to energy management?
Level 1 is the Foundational Energy Management level. It is designed to help any organization from any sector implement a basic energy management program. If you’re just starting out with your energy management program, or perhaps not ready for taking on the implementation of the ISO 50001 energy management standard, this level is the right starting point for you.
An interest in or some experience with ISO standards?
Level 2 is the ISO 50001 Level. This level helps an organization implement an energy management system (EnMS) that conforms to the ISO 50001-2011 standard. Level 2 can be used to implement ISO 50001 at your organization for any reason, such as a customer or corporate mandate, a desire for an internationally recognized approach that can be certified by a third-party, or an interest in integrating energy into an existing ISO management system such as ISO 9001 for quality or ISO 14001 for environmental.
Industrial facility interested in improved energy performance?
Level 3 is the Superior Energy Performance® (SEP™) level. This level builds upon ISO 50001, providing guidance on the additional requirements to achieve DOE Superior Energy Performance®. SEP™ is an industrial energy management certification program that uses the ISO 50001 energy management standard as its foundation but features additional requirements, including third-party verified, measurement and verification (M&V) of energy performance improvement.
Your organization can use the eGuide at any level that best fits its current energy management status. Some organizations will consider starting at Level 1, gradually advancing to the more structured ISO 50001 standard or, for industrial organizations, Superior Energy Performance® program. Other organizations interested pursuing ISO 50001 and/or SEP™ will consider starting immediately at Level 2 or Level 3. The eGuide is designed to allow your organization to flexibly move between the three levels, enabling integration of the more structured ISO 50001 and SEP™ energy management practices. If your organization is already involved in energy management, DOE has created the Strategic Energy Management (SEM) checklist to help assess how prepared your organization is for implementing ISO 50001 or the DOE Superior Energy Performance® program. Use the SEM checklist to conduct a gap analysis of your organization’s energy management program.
The DOE eGuide is a dynamic tool that guides your energy team to build and continually improve your energy management program over time. eGuide provides you and your energy management team the guidance and resources you need to develop an effective and resilient energy management program for your organization—regardless of its size or type.
The new DOE eGuide is designed with the end-user—YOU—in mind. There are three levels for you to choose from to account for different needs:
- Level 1 is the Foundational Energy Management level—this level helps you get started with a structured approach to energy management that any commercial, industrial, or government organization can implement, even if you have little or no experience with energy management.
- Level 2 is the ISO 50001 Energy Management level—this level provides guidance information to help you understand the ISO 50001 energy management standard requirements and the actions you need to take, along with resources and examples to help your organization get started.
- Level 3 is the SEP™ Program level—this level builds upon ISO 50001, providing guidance on the additional requirements to achieve DOE Superior Energy Performance®.
Common across each level, the eGuide guides you through DOE’s 5 Steps to Energy Management. This five step framework is consistent across the three levels, providing a systematic approach to energy management that emphasizes continual improvement.
Substeps & Tasks
Corresponding to each core step are substeps that guide you through what you need to accomplish. Each substep is organized into four sections:
- Overview: provides an introduction to the substep
- How to do it: Contains guidance on the specific tasks that you will need to complete in order to accomplish the substep. Each substep contain a fixed number of tasks.
- Resources & examples: Provides links to resources including spreadsheets, guidance documents, templates to fill out, or weblinks to helpful websites with additional information.
- Next level: Takes you to the same substep in the next level up
For example, Step 4 of Level 1 of the eGuide contains two substeps:
Level 1: Foundational Energy Management
Step 4: Measure and Check Results
Step 4.1: Measure, monitor, and analyze performance metrics
Task 4.1.1: Monitor and analyze energy consumption
Task 4.1.2: Check action plan progress
Task 4.1.3: Check action plan effectiveness
Step 4.2: Respond to deviation in energy performance
Task 4.2.1: Check for and make needed mid-course corrections to action plans
As shown above, contained within Step 4.1 are three specific tasks that need to be completed, while within Step 4.2 is only one task that needs to be completed. In contrast, Step 4 in Level 2 contains five substeps, each with its own tasks to complete. And Step 4 in Level 3 contains three substeps, each with its own tasks to complete.
You can take a look at all the eGuide steps and substeps across Levels 1, 2, and 3 by clicking here.
Navigating the eGuide
The eGuide has been designed for easy navigation between levels, steps, and substeps:
- With one click, you can move from one level to the next level by hitting the “Next Level” button—this will take you to the corresponding substep for the next, more advanced, level of eGuide guidance.
- Moving from one substep to the next is easily done by hitting next or previous substep buttons, numbered according to your progress through the tool, in the top left-hand corner of the substep page.
Tracking Your Team’s Progress
The eGuide Status Tracker is where you can track your team’s progress as you work through the eGuide steps and tasks. Check off completed tasks in each substep’s “How to do it” section; both complete and incomplete tasks are summarized in the Status Tracker, reachable by clicking the “Status Tracker” link in the top navigation. Your progress will be broken down by level, step, substep, and task. You will be able to quantify your progress as a percentage of total available tasks, providing a quick dashboard or downloadable report for your management to see your successes.
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eGuide content was developed by Georgia Institute of Technology with support from US DOE