Case study: Chelmsford Star Co-operative

Chelmsford Star Co-operative gained greater visibility into energy consumption across all of their sites, allowing them to easily benchmark stores against one another, make changes to increase productivity, and engage staff with energy management.

The customer

Chelmsford Star Co-operative Society operates 40 convenience stores across Essex. Since 1867 Chelmsford Star have provided Chelmsford and the surrounding areas with all of their convenience shopping requirements, offering goods such as freshly baked bread, groceries, through to Fairtrade and Local Food products. 

The challenge

Chelmsford Star were looking to increase staff engagement in-store and gain greater visibility of how their estate uses energy. Although the company had access to half-hourly energy consumption data, they needed a way to visualise it so that is was accessible and engaging to the staff in-store and management team.

As a company, they had always tried to be mindful of their energy usage. They reviewed data across each of the stores and where possible had taken action to try to reduce it. Investment in new appliances, running campaigns, and retrofitting doors on to fridges are a few of the changes they had already implemented.

However, Chelmsford Star was keen to understand how energy is being used in more detail and needed a better way of managing usage company-wide.

“I really like it. It’s simplistic and I know it will be easy for the store managers to use.”

Secretary, Chelmsford Star Co-operative Society

The results

Greater visibility – Visualisation of energy consumption data has helped the user to identify the biggest consuming stores and easily compare the impact they are having on the total estate consumption. Thanks to the analytics, they were able to gain deeper insight into the way the stores were operating and producing fresh goods. 

Increased productivity and staff engagement – The product output of the store was increased and missed sales opportunities avoided, by keeping store managers informed to ensure production was uniform across all of their sites.

“The energy reports were really interesting; they added a new perspective to the stores and gave me lots to think about.”

Secretary, Chelmsford Star Co-operative Society

How we did it

  • The monthly trend data allowed the management team to identify 10 days across 3 stores where product output was not as expected. Highlighting these days helped them to gain insight into their business operations and improve productivity.
  • C02 equivalent analytics highlighted that the highest energy consuming store had produced 111,321.90 kg1 of C02 since 2018, the carbon equivalent to making 1.4 million cups of tea in a year.
  • Benchmarking analytics identified the highest energy-intensive store. Compared to the other 40 stores, they use nearly twice as much energy as the average store contributing 5% to the overall estate consumption.