How water can help your business in the future

Water Plus is a Business Reporter client.

Harness the power of water to increase efficiency, reduce energy and reduce carbon emissions

Water is essential to all businesses – and whether you're already taking steps to use water or want to know where to start, there are a few things to keep in mind to keep delivering for your customers.

Water may be one of the lowest utility costs for your business, but it shouldn't be the last thing you consider. Small steps around water management can save energy, help control costs and reduce carbon emissions.

Watching how you use water can pay off

Although 43 percent of businesses say water is critical to the goods they produce or services they provide, 15 percent don't know the location of their water meter, according to a 2023 survey of 800 organizations.*

Another 2023 survey found that 1 in 4 businesses saved water, including spotting leaks, after noting their water use more frequently in a year. Nearly 40 percent said it had helped with budgeting and 2 percent said it had saved energy.**

Scott MacIndeor, Head of Advanced Services at award-winning water retailer Water Plus, said: “Knowing what is being used where is the first step, so regular on-site water checks are important for businesses, alongside more close monitoring of water use. This has helped businesses spot opportunities as well as spot website problems early.

“Small changes in a business can also lead to big water savings and reduce energy use and carbon emissions – all of which help meet sustainability goals and objectives and help reduce environmental impact. There are carbon dioxide emissions associated with the water used on a site, so the wider benefits of further promoting that used can be identified in a number of ways.'

Enable efficiency on your website

The water efficiency technical experts at Water Plus have helped organizations of all sizes in a variety of sectors manage their water more easily, efficiently and effectively, saving energy where less water needs to be moved or used.

Scott said: “When it comes to water management, there is a range of water saving technology and kit that can help. Quick-to-install, low-cost water conservation measures will deliver immediate savings – with average water savings of 34.6 percent across a range of more than 40 locations by 2023.”

Data loggers on water meters, which provide daily updates to an online portal through Water Plus, allow businesses to easily see opportunities for savings. Water meters aren't always in easily accessible locations where people can safely take measurements, so technology that helps monitor measurements can be useful there too, particularly if you have a number of locations.

In 2023, a manufacturer told the Water Plus Advanced Services team that a data logger installed by the Water Plus team, as part of a number installed at various locations since September 2022, was also helping them save energy. Closer monitoring of usage can help identify underground leaks at sites as well.

(Water Plus)

Scott continued: “Employee engagement will really help deliver additional benefits. Employees can be a great resource for suggesting changes and different approaches to improve water efficiency and processes even more, along with highlighting areas where water waste, such as leakage, can occur.”

Working with various sectors, Water Plus key account managers have delivered a series of Sustainability Days in 2023, raising awareness among staff and encouraging water saving action.

Investigating solutions for the future

Many organizations will already have considered tap efficiency, flow rate controls and processes involving water. All of this is important, but looking a little further ahead will help future budget planning and, ultimately, the bottom line.

Scott said: “As the water needs of every business are not the same, even in similar sectors, it is worth considering both longer-term solutions and actions within the year. For example, water recycling options have become even easier to install on site and we have a team working on future projects as organizations see that pre-planning makes clear business sense.

“Businesses are harnessing the power of water more and more and see the opportunities and wider benefits that greater water efficiency can have. Seek out business water specialists to see further opportunities and the results that can be achieved.”

Working with organizations on their water use has seen Water Plus win a Gold Water Management Award at the Green World Awards 2023 and a UK Customer Satisfaction Award in 2023. This follows two National Sustainability Awards in October 2022 , including carbon reduction, and eight Green Apple environmental awards in the past year, including Gold for Water Management in November 2022 and a Water Efficiency award in September 2023.

Find out more about business water efficiency approaches and how Water Plus experts are helping organizations across England and Scotland to .

Partner with an award-winning business water retailer to increase efficiency and reduce operating costs by communicating [email protected] .

*Online independent survey, commissioned by water retailer Water Plus, March to September 2023, with 808 businesses responding. 15 percent of 791 businesses did not know where their water meter was, and 43 percent of 785 businesses said water was critical to producing goods or providing services. Firm sizes in the survey employed 1 to 9 and those employing 250 or more employees. Water Plus provides water and sewerage services including billing, account management, meter reading, technical water and water conservation services and advice to the largest number of customer supply points in England (713,000 supply points, known as SPIDs, as of 1 September 2023, published data).

**26.9 percent of the 78 responses said that using water more often had helped them save water, exemplified by the question asked about detecting a water leak. Water Plus survey responses from February and March 2023. 39.7 percent of 78 said it helped them budget, 2 percent said it saved them energy (example in the question given: using less hot water) and 70 percent had seen the benefit of reading the water meter more often. Research with small and medium-sized organizations. Lower water use means less carbon emissions, due to the published CO2e conversion factor per cubic meter of water and cubic meter of wastewater.