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Support means renewable energy business is ready for high demand

We caught up recently with Zara Glew, commercial director of Environmental Energies. With the Government’s carbon emissions target of Net-Zero by 2030 set, the business has seen rapid growth in demand for their products and services. They’ve been supported by Business Gateway Adviser, Aruna Bhagwan and the Digital Growth Programme to manage this growth and make improvements.

What does your business do?

Environmental Energies is a renewable energy installer based in Leicester.

We supply, install, monitor and maintain a range of innovative energy-efficient solutions designed to help our customers reduce their energy bills and carbon emissions.

Many of our products, including our solar energy systems have been implemented to encourage businesses and consumers to save energy and become more environmentally responsible.

The business was started in 2011 and has 12 full-time employees plus subcontractors.

What challenges were you facing in the business?

The Government’s Net-Zero by 2030 target has seen an increase in demand for renewable energy. We have just eight years to support businesses trying to reduce their carbon emissions. We need to be highly efficient to manage this increase and growth.

One big challenge was around business intelligence. We were using multiple, manual ways of collecting data and the system we had was not fit for purpose. It took time to find out where we were on projects. We needed something much more robust.

How did you hear about the Business Gateway?

I’ve done some work with the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership (LLEP) to help young people learn more about renewable energy. From there I was advised to contact the Business Gateway and introduced to Business Adviser, Aruna Bhagwan.

How have you been supported?

We went through what we were looking to do with Aruna. We discussed our strategy and potential problems and solutions.

We’ve looked at the whole business and she has signposted me to relevant products or providers. This includes the Skills Support for the Workforce programme, apprenticeships and Leicester Employment Hub to find additional salespeople and project managers.

She introduced us to the University of Leicester and its funded innovation support. The University is currently helping us develop a series of templates for our quotation system.

I was referred to a digital consultant who has carried out a free review of our website looking at the google analytics data. This was to assess return on investment for our social campaigns.

We also wanted to see if there was any funding available to help with the creation of a new CRM. Aruna signposted us to the Digital Growth Programme grant and I was supported by the Digital Adviser, Prashant Gandabhai to successfully apply for a digital grant. We were successfully awarded a £19,950 grant and our total investment was £57,000.

This bespoke cloud-based CRM platform will enable our management, sales and project teams to have a far greater overview of where projects stand in our pipeline of closure and installation, all in real-time.

We’ll be able to operate more efficiently and with greater business insights. It’s adaptable to the fast-moving environment we are in and can be accessed wherever and whenever we need it. This is currently in the build stage.

There’s a lot we don’t know about so Aruna has been really helpful in pointing us in the right direction.

If you’ve got a challenge in your business or needs some guidance contact the Business Gateway by completing an enquiry form now.