In early 2013, E Source collected and analyzed substantial quantitative and qualitative 2011 data from 10 small and midsize business (SMB) efficiency programs. We focused on direct-install programs—new and old, basic and comprehensive, large and small—from across the US and Canada. Our benchmarking study reveals that, despite great variation among offerings, small business direct-install (SBDI) programs are worth the effort for administrators. Our study can also serve as a helpful resource for utilities interested in creating new programs or enhancing existing initiatives.
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The study offers a holistic view of SBDI program design and results, including:
- Incentivized measures in SMB programs
- Number of projects completed per program
- Average cost per project
- Total program expenditures
- Breakdown of expenditures—amounts spent on marketing, incentives, and administration
- Annual program savings
- Staffing and implementation requirements
- Quality assurance and quality control requirements
- Participant profiles
- Effective marketing tactics
- Insight from industry leaders on what makes an effective program
This report was compiled through a combination of direct correspondence with program managers and implementers, evaluations, and annual progress reports. It’s a comprehensive assessment of SBDI programs with insights that can help improve the design of any demand-side management program for businesses.