Nationwide’s energy efficiency tool aims to change behaviour of 15,000 staff

Building society Nationwide has developed a bespoke version of the Carbon Trust's online energy efficiency tool to help its 15,000 employees make better environmental decisions and consequently save on energy costs.

The tool has been created with the help of the Carbon Trust and is set to result in significant annual financial and carbon savings, according to Nationwide.

The building society said the tool will feature virtual representations of familiar locations, accompanied by energy efficiency tips tailored to the company.

It will also provide advice across a variety of business areas, which includes depictions of retail branches and administration centres, as well as transport options for getting to and from work.

Advice will also be offered for details on teleconferencing instead of travelling to meetings, and recommendations on how employees can take action in their own homes.

Lynn Forrester, sustainability manager at Nationwide, said: “Our employees’ support is vital for us to achieve our environmental targets and environmental sustainability must be embedded into the hearts and minds of everyone within the organisation for our strategy to be truly successful”.

Employees will be encouraged to pledge how they will cut carbon and will be provided with additional learning tools such as quizzes and myth-busters.

Information and reporting on pledges will help the building society to target the most effective places to change behaviour, as well as monitor expectations and progress.

The Carbon Trust said the tool helps communicate to employees how small actions can make a big difference across the organisation. The advice provided aims to complement the building societies efforts to reduce carbon, following its work on developing environmental sustainability strategies with the Carbon Trust.

Branches, administration centres, and data centres account for the vast majority of Nationwide’s direct emissions, with branches the highest individual element.

The Carbon Trust said that behaviour change is one of the simplest and cheapest ways of having a big impact on energy costs, with most initiatives paying back within a year or less.

Richard Rugg, Director of Programmes at the Carbon Trust, said: “This shows a pioneering commitment to reducing [Nationwide’s] carbon footprint through people, not just through technical changes and new equipment.

“We expect that by helping their employees work in a more environmentally-friendly way Nationwide will reap both financial and social benefits. We hope to see staff carry this behaviour into other areas of their lives.”

Leigh Stringer

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