Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Internal Paper Savings at Conservice

In 2009, several Conservice employees were selected to form a Conservation Team. The team meets monthly to share ideas on how to best promote conservation in the workplace. A monthly digital newsletter is also emailed to employees. The newsletter contains conservation tips and reports on any other “green” news both inside and outside of the company. The committee also brainstorms different ideas to help promote conservation in the workplace, including placing recycling bins in the break rooms and work rooms, tracking paper usage, and hosting a Conservation Week contest each January.

One aspect of conservation in the workplace that the committee has tracked is the amount of paper purchased versus the number of employees who work for Conservice. This is done by tracking how many reams of paper are being used per employee per month. Using data from the previous year (2008) as our baseline, we've saved 1,165 reams of paper since 2009 when we implemented increased conservation measures. This means we've saved 191 trees from being used for paper. In addition to the trees we've saved, we've calculated that 159,159 gallons of water and 764 pounds of carbon dioxide have been saved that would have been used to process the reams of paper.

In addition to the paper we’re saving internally, we have also tracked the total number of bills that were mailed by Conservice, as well as the number of bills that were sent electronically to the residents. The numbers in the chart to the right reflect the percentage that have been e-bills. All residents are encouraged to sign up for e-bills because it eliminates printed bills, while also allowing residents to receive their bills quicker through e-mail.

The team at Conservice achieved a milestone in 2010 when it took a quality control process paperless. The Billing Department generally relied on printed reports to perform monthly auditing, but with the help of the IT department and an improved process, the team now rarely prints anything. This saves over 6,000 additional pieces of paper each month. Other departments also encourage a paperless environment, rarely printing and frequently recycling. We love conservation and going green!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Press Release: Conservice Expands Energy Star Membership by Joining the Energy Star Commercial & Industrial Buildings Group

As an Energy Star partner, Conservice continuously makes strides towards improving multifamily energy efficiency across the country. The company recently became a member of the Energy Star Commercial and Industrial Buildings Group, which is a select group of Energy Star Partners who work with commercial or industrial buildings.  It is the only group specifically sponsored by the EPA to manage issues with commercial buildings.

As part of this new membership, Conservice will be involved in the EPA’s developments that affect the multifamily industry. Conservice has already helped the EPA with one of its latest projects: developing a score system for multifamily buildings, which will allow apartment communities to earn the coveted Energy Star rating. With their permission, Conservice shared energy data from a number of apartment communities to help in the development of this new scoring system.

Conservice will continue to receive updates from the EPA on all relevant projects and Energy Star programs, and will educate apartment communities on the benefits of such programs. Conservation is becoming increasingly important and many in the multifamily industry are making it a priority. Conservice can help multifamily owners in their sustainability efforts, and as a member of the Energy Star C&I Buildings Group, Conservice can provide our customers and residents the best information and tools to promote smart energy choices.

Energy Star is a program created by the EPA and US Department of Energy and is designed to help people save money while protecting the environment. This is done by promoting energy efficient products and adopting energy efficient practices. Conservice continues to show a commitment to conservation and looks forward to continuing this goal as an EPA Energy Star Partner.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Working at Conservice

                                                                                                                by Josh Thompson

Last week as I was driving to work, Mike Carruthers came on the radio with his “Something You Should Know” segment. His “something” for the day was that “It turns out the career advice to follow your passion may not be so good.” He went on to say that the reason people really love their jobs is because there is autonomy, the opportunity to make an impact and the opportunity to be creative.

This resonated with me because I never in a million years would have had the dream or passion to work at a utility billing company. I had dreams of working as a baseball statistician or working with medical technology – working with apartment communities and their utilities literally never crossed my mind. Given that, I really enjoy what I do here at Conservice.

In my experience working at Conservice, there is a great balance of autonomy and supervisor support. I have been lucky to have the opportunity to meet frequently with my supervisors. These meetings are very rarely meetings for them to check in on me or to demand certain things. They have been meetings to see what I was working on and what support I needed. By and large I feel that I've always had a large measure of autonomy with each different job that I've had.

Another thing that has made me enjoy working at Conservice is that I feel that my individual contribution matters. I've had four different positions here at Conservice. With each position I have felt like I was making an impact. I really felt like I was helping communities out once I started on the Synergy Audit team. It was rewarding to find anomalies on the bill and be able to alert the community about them. I loved knowing that I had saved a client time or money. As I've gone on working here I have had other opportunities to help develop solutions and work on projects. I've felt needed and appreciated.

When I first started working here I had lots of ideas on how to change things and improve processes. I regret that I didn't bring them up sooner. I wasn't aware that the company culture was such that new ideas were not only acceptable but encouraged. Conservice is a workplace where the only constant is change. I really believe that is one thing that has contributed to the success of Conservice. Team members, regardless of their position, are able to make contributions to improvements.

Is working at Conservice my passion? It is now. I’m able to work on projects without being micromanaged. I feel like I make a difference. I not only have the opportunity to be creative, but I feel like I have the requirement to be creative. I’m glad that I’m on the Conservice bus – it’s definitely a great place to be!

The Conservice Adopt-a-Highway Sign is Now Up

The Conservation Team has worked hard for the last year organizing quarterly canyon clean ups, so it's rewarding to see that UDOT has put our sign up in the canyon. We're grateful for the opportunity to keep the canyon beautiful!