An overview of Ecova’s energy dashboard was recently highlighted in Energy Manager Today. The article discusses dashboard types, how they differ, and how companies can choose the right one for their needs. Facility and energy managers need to understand their site portfolio’s energy use, but unfortunately, not all dashboards are created equally.
The article describes the evolution of dashboards, paired with the needs of the user. Dashboards can be very simple and still serve end user needs, or be incredibly complex, with multi-variable algorithms built in to compare and measure corporate Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).
The most basic energy dashboards can be built on an Excel spreadsheet. Set up correctly, it can provide insight into energy use by site, region, or any other variable that can be populated into your data set and manipulated with a pivot table. And while an Excel spreadsheet can be a useful tool, it typically requires time to digest, as it can often be more cumbersome than an intuitive and graphically-designed dashboard.
Data is just that; data. What you do with the data unlocks its value. A dashboard is valuable for providing insight into energy consumption, equipment health and behavior by site personnel. If you don’t do anything with the data, it’s a dead end.
It is important to have a solid understanding of what you are looking for in order to find a dashboard that best fits your needs. For example, if you only have a handful of sites and you’re at the beginning of defining your energy strategy, gathering your historical utility bill data and analyzing it via Excel is a great first step.
If you have numerous sites that you need to roll-up into a portfolio or regional view, and want to identify outliers at a glance, a more sophisticated dashboard like Ecova’s new Meter Dashboard would certainly serve your needs. And if you have a strategic energy management program with company-specific KPIs, a custom dashboard solution would probably be the best route for you.
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