Leading edge companies have long sought to run their businesses according to ISO standards in areas such as quality (ISO 9001) and environmental management systems (ISO 14001). In 2011, ISO came up with a standard to give credibility and structure to energy management systems for industry facilities, ISO 50001.
Early indications are that the ISO 50001 Energy Management standard is poised for tremendous growth, as manufacturers recognize that adhering to the standard saves energy costs, reduces downtime, improves energy reliability and contributes to environmental sustainability objectives.
As with any new standard, though, it takes education for companies to become fluent in what it takes to be compliant. With that in mind, Schneider Electric Energy University has launched a new free course, “ISO 50001: Maximizing Your Energy Efficiency Through Proven Standards.” Developed in conjunction with experts from the Schneider Electric Industry Business, the course is the first industry focused Energy University offering, falling outside of its Colleges of Data Centers and Energy Efficiency.
ISO 50001 provides a framework of requirements for organizations to:
- Develop a policy for more efficient use of energy
- Fix targets and objectives to meet the policy
- Use data to better understand and make decisions about energy use
- Measure the results
- Review how well the policy works, and
- Continually improve energy management
The course is designed as an introduction to the standard. You’ll learn, for example, three reasons to implement ISO 50001, the first of which is that it’s an emerging market expectation. Multinationals who are adopting the standard include 3M, Coca Cola, Alcoa, Dow Chemical, Lockheed Martin, Owens Corning and yes, Schneider Electric.
Secondly, ISO 50001 provides a competitive advantage by providing for:
- Decreased energy demand and costs
- Elevation of “green brand”
- Decreased maintenance costs
- Cross functional alignment
- Continuous improvement culture
- Engaged employees
Finally, the standard provides an efficient framework for an energy management program, helping companies give structure to what may now be a collection of energy management initiatives with uncertain priorities, inconsistent metrics, and confusing objectives.
In the Energy University course, you’ll learn about the anatomy of the ISO 50001 standard, and the four steps toward determining your readiness to implement it: Plan, Do, Check and Act.
- Plan is where you institute the essential objectives and processes to deliver results in accordance with the expected target.
- Do is where you implement the plan, and carry out the process. You also gather data for investigation in the Check and Act steps.
- Check is where you study the actual results and compare them against anticipated results to determine any differences. This allows you to determine appropriateness and completeness of the plan to facilitate the implementation.
- Act is where you analyze the differences between actual and planned results, determine their root causes and employ corrective actions on major differences.
The course goes into detail on what’s required at each step, some of the challenges involved in compliance, and then gets into a discussion of the 5-step implementation process:
- Gap analysis
- Facility energy review
- Energy management system construction
- Readiness review and internal audit
- ISO certification audit
Schneider Electric is in a rather unique position to offer guidance on ISO 50001, and not just because we’ve long been a global specialist in energy management. The very first site globally to certify the ISO 50001 standard in June 2011 was Schneider Electric’s World Headquarters, known as “The Hive.”
Now you can learn from our experts by taking the free course, “ISO 50001: Maximizing Your Energy Efficiency Through Proven Standards.” Select “Courses by Language” at the Energy University homepage and you’ll find it in the resulting list.