Energy Software: Do You know What You Need?

One thing became quite clear from my tour of the tradeshow floor at the 2012 World Energy Engineering Conference in Atlanta: There is a sea of energy monitoring software and systems out there. I don’t envy those of you fishing for the right one.

I’ve been in your shoes. At Cascade, we’ve used a few different systems over the past seven years, and evaluated many more. It’s been a real challenge figuring out which system would fulfill our needs and our clients’ requirements. Part of the problem is that even after looking at feature lists and grilling the software folks about capabilities, the truth is, you pretty much have to use it to know how it works and determine if it’s the right fit. That’s even truer when you’re considering how it works from a client perspective. It’s not easy to change to a different platform once you decide that what you have isn’t up to the task. So, how do you settle on the best energy management software for your organization right out of the gate? I think, the best way to start hinges on answering one key question: What do you want to use it for?

Pretty Basic, Right?

If your answer is, “I want to use it to monitor energy use,” then your field is wide open. There are dozens of software packages, such as eSight and Northwrite, which can help you track interval data and provide basic reports.

If your answer is, “To track Scope 1, 2 and 3 carbon emissions for my enterprise,” then there are a few packages we know of that do that quite well. Hara’s software platform is one example of an enterprise system designed to track carbon and energy based on utility bills and other monthly data sources. You might also look at C3‘s solutions that also help clients manage their greenhouse gas emissions.

If your answer is, “Lower my energy costs,” then I think, (and yes, I am biased) Cascade’s new platform, SENSEI, is worth a look.

Born from Energy Efficiency, Raised by Code-hounds

Cascade has been in the business of saving companies money through energy efficiency for almost 20 year. Whether you’re a corporate client or a utility, we’re great at achieving 10-30 percent in energy savings. We’ve helped our clients save hundreds of millions of dollars over the years. When we set out to build SENSEI, we focused on a design and feature-set that would meet our customers’ end goals, to save energy and money. And we made sure SENSEI would be something an energy engineer would appreciate using every day out on the floor by:

  • Providing access to energy information in a few clicks
  • Offering the functionality to save favorite views
  • Allowing you to view the information you want, the way you want

Connecting the Dots

Visit energySENSEI.com and you’ll see that by “connection” I’m talking about people getting down to the business of saving energy—together. The SENSEI platform supports that process by giving you the ability to interact around real-time events, to assign tasks, troubleshoot problems, and document actions taken.

We wanted to create a tool that provided corrective actions, because we believe that connecting actions to energy performance provides invaluable intelligence. And connecting people around a common efficiency goal ensures the job gets done.

We’ve only just begun

Yeah, I know it’s the title of that Carpenters’ hit song (hey, I grew up on 70’s folk/rock) but, it’s also a battle cry of sorts. Cascade is committed to giving SENSEI the resources to expand and improve at a rapid pace. We have a great roadmap brimming with ideas based on our years of experience. And we’d love to hear from you and get feedback about what you need to be successful.

If you’re trying to locate that “just right” platform that will help you lower your energy costs, SENSEI just might be your answer. Check it out!

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