Beth Kayser

EV charging points: How to get your office plugged in

5 min Read
Electric vehicle plugged in at a charging point

Maybe you’re already the owner of an electric car or maybe you watch ruefully as a fleet of fuel-guzzling vehicles slip in and out of your office each day. Either way, you’re right to feel the pull of the electric movement.

Vehicle emissions are the largest CO2e polluter in the UK. So when it comes to achieving Net Zero, it’s safe to say that a major driving force (wink wink) of change lies in the transition to EV’s. Of course, when it comes to commuting, walking, cycling and public transport is much less carbon expensive. But, for when those four wheels just can’t be helped, switching to EV is an area where businesses can make a big impact.

So, you’ve decided it’s time to say something to your boss/manager/work wifey? Epic, I salute you. Pushing for change is equally, if not more important, than cutting personal emissions.

Before you charge in, let’s explore a couple of facts and tactics that’ll help get your point heard. First things first, get your proposition at the ready, your story straight and your facts checked. You could have a passion for the planet and all the green energy in the world, but, without a strong pitch, your case will likely fall on deaf ears.

If you haven’t already, polish your powers of persuasion by reading this post by our Founder, Christian: ‘Convincing your employer to think green’. In it, he explores how to communicate with the powers that be. We also have a handy petrol vs electric emissions calculator in case it’s of interest.

For your perusing pleasure, here’s some handy ‘EVs are awesome’ arguments:

For the good of the environment and our collective future

Forgive me if this seems obvious, but no planet to live on means no business, no employer, no employees. Cleaning up our act starts and ends with greenhouse gases, and the average-sized petrol car emits ~3X more CO2e per mile than an EV. It’s a real ‘problem meets solution’, this one.

To further that, studies have found that having an available EV charger at your workplace makes drivers 6X more likely to switch to an electric car. This is because having access to workplace charging makes EV ownership feasible for those without off-street parking at home, which includes around 22% of UK homeowners and upwards of 50% in London and other major cities. So, installing EV charging points at your office really does make a difference.

The workplace everyone wants

Zero emissions across staff and fleet vehicles doesn’t just contribute to your workplace meeting its CSR and environmental targets. It also demonstrates a commitment to curbing emissions.

With tomorrow’s workforce putting purpose over paychecks, and 'protecting the planet' ranking as a top priority for millennial CSR, initiatives like EV charging points should be a high priority for c-suites that want to attract and retain top talent, like yourself (ahem ahem).  

Another benefit?!?

Businesses want to be great places to work; they want staff to be saying ‘another benefit?!’, not the opposite.

EV charging points are another thing to add to the list, and are particularly powerful because of the convenience of having a charging point at work (for EV drivers, the car just sitting there all day, not charging when it needs it, is sacrilege).

And don’t forget that if the company has an electric fleet, they can use the charging point during the hours it’s not being used by employees!

See the change, lead the charge

The UK Government plans to phase out the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030, with Clean Air Zones (CAZs) and Ultra-Low Emissions Zones (ULEZs) planned for a number of cities throughout the UK. So if the future of cars is electric, why wait around?

There are now more than 35,000 charging points across the UK in over 13,000 locations, with around 7,000 charge point connectors added in 2020 alone. That's more public places to charge than petrol stations. Ask your leaders to lead.

If these advantages aren’t enough for your employer, then it’s on to Phase 2: the rebuttal. The main business barrier is always going to be *cue Abba* money, money, money. So, let’s get these bullet points going again…

How to make EV charging points more affordable for businesses:

The Workplace Charging Scheme

The WCS is a UK government initiative that reduces the purchase and installation cost of a new workplace charging station by up to 75% (capped at £350 per socket). Businesses can claim for (up to a maximum of) 40 charging stations; 40 single sockets or 20 double sockets. This is all managed by the Office for Zero-Emission Vehicles, where more information can be found.

Rent rather than buy

Some EV charging point providers offer the ability to lease your charging points over a 3-5 year term. This allows a business to strategically spread the cost of infrastructure, rather than swallowing large upfront costs.

Get employees to cover some of the costs

Although offering free charging to your employees maximises incentive, there are other ways of working it. To cover energy costs, companies can charge employees based on energy consumed. Fully charging a 60kWh electric car will cost between £8.30 and £9.40 (depending on where your office is) and gives you about 200 miles of range. This is much less than a tank of petrol. Or, businesses can charge employees based on energy consumed plus an additional margin to cover the infrastructure costs.

Save on fuel and running costs

For companies where fleet vehicles are part of the business, switching to EVs will reduce running costs enormously. That’s not limited to just fuel prices as, with less moving parts than internal combustion engines, going electric tends to be much cheaper to maintain. It also slashes taxes and tariffs on polluting in city centres. According to Energy Saving Trust, ‘On average, you’ll pay around three times more to drive 100 miles in a petrol or diesel car than in an EV’.

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At Pawprint, we’re all about empowering individuals and injecting the eco journey with some fun so, as I sign off this article, I leave you with a final thought: when approaching leaders about EV charging points, consider who you’re talking to. Put them in the driving seat, if you will. Will a bit of humour get their ears pricked? Will some environmental gamification à la Pawprint for Business get them excited to connect and compete with colleagues? Or will the above facts and figures do all the talking?

Everybody is motivated by different things, but only together can we work towards a common, low-carbon future. The aim is to get as many people as possible on side, then all the roads will lead to Rome.

That’s about enough from me I think.

Until next time,

Beth

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