Overcoming barriers to investment in energy management training

Despite the many benefits that training provides not only for individual staff but to the organization as a whole, many still choose not to integrate training into their organizations' overall energy management strategy.

The best way to address this issue is to secure buy-in from multiple stakeholders by talking about the benefits from their perspective. Linking energy management training to other corporate initiatives, such as quality improvement, continuous improvement and environmental sustainability demonstrates to decision-makers how energy management training aligns with these priorities.

To make the challenge of identifying and overcoming training-related barriers easier, we have developed the table below:

Overcoming barriers to training
Common barriers to energy management training Options to overcome these barriers
Support / buy-in from senior management and other key personnel
  • Align energy management training with corporate strategies and goals.
  • Demonstrate need through energy benchmarking against similar buildings/organizations and through competency assessments.
  • Highlight non energy-saving benefits e.g. more engaged staff, personal development, opportunity to better communicate with staff.
Availability of funding for training
  • Secure senior management support for training.
  • Provide best-in-class examples of organizations that have used energy management training to their advantage.
  • Through your tracking initiatives, demonstrate how quickly training pays for itself.
  • Investigate potential for external funding/subsidies e.g. utility providers, government bodies, as a means to offset your training costs.
Inability to easily verify training savings
  • Use case studies from other organizations that are successfully implementing training programs to demonstrate the proven benefits of training.
  • Monitor, track and report on energy-use pre- and post-training.
  • Incorporate follow-up mechanisms to capture and track opportunities implemented, thereby showing savings.
Lack of qualified trainers and courses
  • Contact utility companies for lists of qualified trainers and/or courses.
  • Determine whether subsidies are available to hire external trainers or to send staff to external workshops.
  • Partner with other organizations and share the cost to hire qualified trainers and/or courses.