Darren Riva explains how choosing lighting as a service is a cost-saving way to kit out a building with effective lighting solutions.
05 March 2018 | Darren Riva
With the evolution of LED, light is becoming increasingly effective and efficient. Recent studies show a direct link between improved employee performance and the quality of light within the workspace. Many businesses, and decision-makers are seriously exploring the idea of lighting as a service.
So what is it?
Historically, many businesses have regarded lighting as a legacy burden, an annual cost drain considered too costly and disruptive to tackle. Put simply, lighting-as-a-service means paying for the installation, maintenance and management of lighting, entering into a contract whereby the supplier ensures the future lighting performance.
The model protects customers from any loss in asset value because the service is not solely based on selling luminaires but about maximising lighting performance. Such a service enables customers to benefit from LED and future technology without the hassle of owning and operating lighting solutions themselves.
Why should FMs consider it?
EU legislation is gradually removing the problem of inefficient lamps from the market, often forcing businesses to modernise. In recent years a new phrase has entered the business lexicon - the circular economy - describing how firms are looking for more cost-effective business models.
The circular economy means rethinking waste and recycling and developing products and services that keep resources within the economy. The lighting-as-a-service model fits this idea perfectly. Cost savings delivered by LED lighting systems will interest any business, but offering lighting as a service rather than a commodity moves the conversation beyond savings.
What are the advantages?
The 'as a service' model means that everything associated with lighting, from design to regular maintenance, is handled by the provider, enabling businesses to focus on core tasks.
Once installed, transparent remote monitoring helps businesses to achieve the agreed aims regarding illuminance, energy efficiency and, with expert guidance, identify opportunities to enhance use patterns.
The future-proofing advantages of lighting-as-a-service are substantial. Without the model, new technological advances would require significant capital expenditure. Lighting-as-a-service provides buyers with the necessary consultative expertise to enable them to stay ahead. Additionally, businesses deal with just one supplier contact, rather than having to deal with maintenance, management and sales personnel.
Efficient lighting systems also mean lower energy use and a cut in CO2 emissions, improving environmental balance and lower CO2 certificate costs.
What are the challenges?
Changing any purchasing model will always require careful assessment, and moving to lighting as a service will be a step change for many. But businesses are looking seriously at any solution that improves performance and moves the company in a more environmentally conscious direction.
What should you consider when sourcing a service provider?
The most advanced suppliers will understand the biological effect of light on the human body and work with businesses to design solutions that not only save money and energy, but also motivate employees and serve to enhance the reputation and brand image of the company as a whole.
Providers should be able to guarantee an effortless transition, with skilled staff disassembling and disposing of old luminaires and lamps. Providers will explain how taking the decision now can lead to immediate savings via a model that typically begins paying for itself from day one.
Darren Riva is services director at Zumtobel Group Northern Europe