Decision Tools for the Decision Makers

Motor Decisions MatterSM

Opportunity

CEE members met with electric motor manufacturers and representatives of the ENERGY STAR® program in 2000 to discuss opportunities to increase commercial and industrial customer awareness of high efficiency electric motors. A manufacturer commented that financial decision makers can be one of the biggest barriers to achieving energy savings because they often only take into account a motor’s purchase price. Others agreed. Purchasing managers are seldom aware that the electricity to operate the motor typically represents 95 percent of a motor’s lifetime operating costs.


ApproachPie chart comparing operating cost of motor—95% of total lifetime expenditure— to purchase, installation and maintenance—5% of total.

CEE members took the manufacturer's concerns to heart. They began to work in concert with industry on a binational awareness campaign that complemented member programs. The campaign, Motor Decisions Matter (MDM), sought to give decision makers the tools and information they needed to draw up financially sound plans for upgrades and repairs in anticipation of the inevitable motor failures or system shutdowns that are a part of their operating environment. CEE member programs, motor distributors, and motor service centers used the Motor Decisions Matter campaign as a credible, third-party resource to demonstrate important motor management concepts to their customers. Sponsors also served as a nationally recognized source of expertise on motor efficiency, motor management, and motor system energy savings.

Outcome

The MDM campaign provided tools, such as the 1-2-3 Approach to Motor Management, to close the communications gap between operations and procurement personnel across all industries. Importantly, it demonstrated the range of motor costs that go beyond the initial purchase price, helping decision makers understand the lifetime cost of a motor. Additional tools, such as the Motor Planning Kit, provided resources and direction for how to develop and implement policies and practices to effectively manage motor populations. Sound motor management not only helps reduce downtime, it also decreases energy costs and improves productivity.

Motor Decisions Matter joined together efficiency program administrators, manufacturers, and the motor service industry in a campaign targeting industry decision makers with a consistent message. It provided the supporting tools needed to manage motors for greater energy efficiency. Decision makers viewed MDM materials, which stood apart from the materials commonly provided by individual manufacturers, as credible and independent.

CEE seeks opportunities to create market infrastructure supporting efficiency. Through careful listening to industry partners, the successful multiyear partnership with motor manufacturers and the motor repair industry took form. Identifying a target audience and disseminating informational tools that spoke to that audience furthered the goal of energy savings in industry.