3 Ways Retail Operators Reduce Their Utility Expenses

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3 Ways Retail Operators Reduce Their Utility Expenses

In today’s economic climate, it’s becoming glaringly evident that retailers need to save money to make money. While there may seem like endless avenues to explore when looking to cut operating costs, there is one often overlooked: Utilities. 

Utilities are a vital part of your business, but because of all the intricacies that go into successfully running daily operations they are often not given much thought. Reducing utility expenses can help offset thinner profit margins brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic

Let’s take a look at some of the ways retailers are already cutting costs and saving money on their utilities. 

Reducing Late Fees

Whether you realize it or not, provider late fees are costly. Those costs are compounded when multiplied across your various locations. So what is causing all of these provider late fees? Delays in receiving and gathering invoices, data entry errors, missing invoices, misapplied payments, the list goes on and on. One misstep between the utility provider sending the bill and you paying it, can result in massive late fees. In one study, it was found that prior to partnering with Conservice, one client was paying on average over $81,000 a year in provider late fees alone!   

Conservice reduces late fees by streamlining utility invoice processing and payments through our advanced solution offering known as Synergy. Our solution closely tracks expected monthly invoices to ensure nothing is ever missed. Invoices are quickly and accurately processed ensuring timely payments to utility providers. Conservice makes the days of rushing to cut checks to avoid late fees and potential shut-offs a thing of the past. 

Bill Audits 

Statistics show that up to 20% of provider invoices have billing errors. Billing errors result in unnecessary overspending on utility expenses. If these invoices are not properly audited, these errors go undetected, costing you money, while padding utility companies’ profits. And, utility billing errors are on the rise-making it increasingly more important to pay close attention to the details of your utility accounts. This does require you to invest time into auditing the bills and the experience to know what to watch out for. 

Utility experts at Conservice audit every single invoice processed for accuracy and will notify you immediately of our findings. When an error is identified, we work directly with the utility company on your behalf to fully resolve the issue, ensuring you never overpay for a provider’s error. Our partners saved over $22 million dollars in 2020 through our powerful invoice audit service. 

Utility Benchmarking 

Benchmarking entails using utility data to measure how efficiently a building performs over time and how it compares to similar buildings. Benchmarking is a valuable tool for utilities that provides important insight into building efficiency and performance, which allows you to make strategic decisions that improve your business. With sustainability on the rise, reporting utility data to Energy Star’s Portfolio Manager has been legally mandated across many cities and states nationwide. 

A lack of consistent and accurate utility data makes benchmarking efforts impossible. With our dynamic expense management platform, access to reliable utility data is only a click away. Detailed reporting provides you with a comprehensive view of your utility usage and expenses. Additionally, Conservice can also manage all data reporting requirements to Portfolio Manager on your behalf. We handle the process from beginning to end, making it hands-off for you and your staff. Not only will this free up your time, but you will have peace of mind trusting all benchmark reporting requirements are being met and your organization is in compliance. 

In Conclusion 

While implementing a third-party utility expense management solution may seem counterintuitive when looking to reduce costs, it can actually be one of the best cost-saving measures you can take. Not only will you save financially on the reduction of late fees and provider errors, but you will also save on one of the most overlooked commodities of all: Time. Entrusting Conservice to manage your utilities also means reducing administrative burden, and freeing up your time, so you can focus on what matters most--running your business. 

 

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