Member of the Week - esave
This week’s Member of the Week is esave - an independent energy and sustainability consultancy which provides energy advice and environmental consultancy services to business.
esave was established in 1999 by two former energy industry bosses with a combined expertise of almost 40 years. In the beginning, esave felt that it had found a niche within the market to provide local companies with friendly and honest advice on how to manage their energy. The firm now employs 11 members of staff and has premises at Canal Road in Inverness. Almost 20 years later, esave has grown and developed into a specialist organisation providing expertise, advice, and practical solutions on all aspects of business energy and utility procurement and environmental compliance and sustainability. The firm uses its expertise to make sure that companies can concentrate on running their business more profitably without unwelcome distractions.
We spoke to George Michie, Managing Director at esave, to find out more about his role:
“Before launching esave in 1999, I held a variety of positions at SSE - beginning as a Commercial Trainee, working through the ranks to Regional Sales Manager and working latterly as Key Accounts Manager for major corporate clients.
Aside from all the duties that come with being the Managing Director, my main responsibility is introducing esave to new customers and making sure our existing customers are happy with what we do for them. This means I get to drive through wonderful scenery to speak to lovely people and learn about all sorts of different businesses on a daily basis. It really doesn’t feel like a job at all!”
We asked George why esave wished to feature as Inverness Chamber’s Member of the Week:
“We feel that Member of the Week provides a great opportunity to demonstrate the diversity and calibre of business that exists within the Highlands. We also believe that we have an important message that needs to be voiced and communicated to companies not just in the Highlands but nationwide. For companies to truly thrive in the future, they need to start looking at their long-term sustainability now.”
Unique Sustainability Plan (USP)
With costs rising, utility pricing becoming increasingly complex and companies being encouraged to look at the wider environmental implications of energy use, it makes sense for companies to develop a strategy to manage costs, use of resources and compliance. That’s why George and the esave team are keen to promote their Unique Sustainability Plan (USP) for business.
“The problem faced by many companies is that there is seldom a simple one size fits all solution. That is why we developed our free, no obligation Unique Sustainability Plan. This helps companies of any size develop a strategy that will help them address the environmental challenges they may face while saving money at the same time.
Every USP is based on knowing what the business is currently doing, what the business is wanting to achieve and how the business wants to get there. Our USP is developed to help companies address these areas.”
esave’s USP helps organisations develop a plan that which covers three areas: simple cost management, resource efficiency and compliance with either legal or voluntary standards.
According to George:
“Ultimately our USP;
> Gives you expert advice on how to tackle the energy and environmental challenges faced by business
> Saves you time, by providing a roadmap for improved performance
> Saves you money – USP itself is free! We want you to take action, and by making your USP free, we’re making it easier for you to take the next steps.
By implementing the recommendations from the USP, companies can reduce their ongoing costs. Savings vary from customer to customer but can run to hundreds of thousands of pounds on their utility contracts. In wate,r we regularly save more than 20% and often save organisations 50% on their telecoms.”
The USP will help identify any areas of legislation where your business is exposed to risk, this has helped other companies avoid around £4.5m in fines, according to esave. Find out more about esave's USP here.
Future Business Plans
Although esave is looking to grow business across the UK and in selected overseas markets over the next 12 months, the company is keen to stress focus on the local market too. George wants to make sure that whenever an organisation in the North of Scotland is looking to employ the services of a company like his, esave is the first name they think of.
esave were recently finalists in the 2016 VIBES awards for The Management SME Award. The VIBES Awards are extremely prestigious as they recognise businesses in Scotland that are taking significant steps to improve or reduce their impact on the environment, often saving money in the process. This year saw the most entries in the awards history and finalists underwent a rigorous judging process over a period of several months.
“Although we didn’t win, we feel that being a finalist recognises the teams’ efforts in what we’re trying to achieve with our own performance, and is a clear signal to our clients that we are committed to doing business sustainably. It is also offers a great platform for us to show other SME’s that businesses of any size can implement sustainable practices that will not only benefit the planet but will enhance the bottom line as well.”
Other organisations involved with the VIBES Awards include Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), The Scottish Government, The Energy Saving Trust, Highlands & Islands Enterprise, Scottish Enterprise, Scottish Water, Zero Waste Scotland and the 20:20 Climate Group. VIBES is further supported by CBI Scotland, the Institute of Directors (IoD), the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), Bright Green Business and Quality Scotland.
We asked esave what it valued most about Chamber membership:
“The opportunity to network with other likeminded organisations and share experiences, good and bad, about running a business in today’s increasingly challenging climate. Take ownership and get involved, you will only get out of the Chamber what you put in.”