Hybrid return to work ‘could cost businesses thousands in energy bills’

A new study suggests infrequent workplace visits could worsen the issue of energy waste caused by devices being left on unnecessarily

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A hybrid return to work could cost businesses thousands of pounds a year in increased energy bills, suggests Gazprom Energy.

The business energy supplier warns the shift in working patterns as companies work to reopen physical office spaces is likely to lead to “unnecessary energy usage” and “adverse impacts to organisations’ green credentials”.

It calls for business owners and employees to pay more attention to keeping consumption down by turning off lighting, heating and electronic devices between infrequent workplace visits.

The business energy supplier estimates that heating left on overnight costs an additional £125.56 per square foot per year, with lights being left on costing nearly four times this amount.

Grace Rothery, Head of UK Retail at Gazprom Energy, said: “While the UK readjusts to working life post-lockdown, energy consumption should be top of mind for businesses.

“With more time between visits to the workplace, there’s a much greater potential for electronics, lighting and heating to be left turned on, or on standby, when not in use. With many predicting that hybrid working will last for at least 12 months, employees could be accumulating a hefty electricity and gas bill for their organisation.”

He added that businesses should encourage their employees to take more responsibility for electricity usage and suggested a team member could be nominated to make sure everything is turned off or unplugged at the end of each working day.