Lighting Automation: The Key to a Brighter Workplace

Lighting Automation: The Key to a Brighter Workplace

by Dylan Caraker

We live in a time unlike any other the world has ever seen. With all sorts of technological advancements literally at our fingertips, our lives can become a little easier, which is perfect considering the fast-paced lives we all love to lead.

Recently, some big strides have been taken to make our workplace and facilities a bit more tech savvy, but the most significant gains have been specifically in lighting automation. This may seem a relatively small convenience to gain in this technological boom, but it can have a massive impact.

This new lighting technology allows Facility Managers, business owners, and many others to essentially run their workplace remotely via smartphones or tablets. While most of these “smart” lighting applications have been made for homeowners, one can argue that the same can be accomplished for businesses.

The ability for our workplace lights to be automated helps business owners
in a number of ways:

1. Get rid of the horrible wall fixtures

Typically, in facilities lighting is connected to more than one lighting fixture, meaning that there are numerous light switches on a wall. This creates a jumble of switches that lead to any number of fixtures. An automated lighting system would completely remove those ugly fixtures from the wall and streamline your lighting experience. Instead your facility would have one, universal keypad that controls the lighting for the entire space. With this installed, you can control all of the lights with a single push of a button.

2. It’s all about timing

At home, we generally need artificial or natural light to help us be awake and alert. And, of course, during the evening at home we need less light input, which tells our minds that it’s time to sleep. The same principle is effective at work. A lighting control system that turns work lighting on and off on a timer is an effective way to ease our brain throughout the day. The more light you have in the workplace, the more elevating and productive the mood will become, and your workers will be ready to go when they arrive. On the flip side, a dimmer can be put in to place to create a more relaxing atmosphere.

3. Make it convenient: less is more

Lighting that is controlled through your smart devices places the power directly in your hands. With this technology, your workplace can be up and running at the touch of a button—miles away even. Furthermore, you can decide to make it all or nothing by selecting which sections of lights you want on versus those you prefer to remain off. You decide when and if it is time to let there be light.

4. Dimming lights saves money

By adding dimmers to your lighting system, the lights could never go above 75%. A 25% difference in lights may seem like too much, but coupled with natural light from nearby windows, your employees will never know the difference. By having lower levels of light in your facility, you will begin to see a drastic reduction in your electric bill. Also, by working on a dimmer, you will also be extending the life of your light bulbs, saving your business valuable time and money. In addition to dimming, maybe just turn them completely off. Occupancy sensors can be put into place that automatically come on when someone enters the room. This not only will help with security, but it also saves by having the lights off.

5. Set the mood 

While being able to save money on dimming your lights, there are advantages to raising the lighting to 100%. By having the lights fully up, rooms become easier to clean through increased visibility. For some facilities like food processors, being able to spot soiled areas is paramount to food safety and disease prevention. This allows ambience to reign during normal operational hours while after hours can be dedicated to cleaning every crack and crevice.

As you can see, the amount of light affects us in so many ways – our sleep cycle, moods, the ability to see, and your pocketbook.
If you’re concerned about how to address these needs, don’t know where to start, or can’t decide if it’s even worth the investment, the answer is simple. Let the Envelop Group come in and assist you with your lighting needs. They can perform energy audits, automated lighting solutions, and track for energy use and costs.

In return, your business will receive valuable analytics such as the charting of energy costs and usage on a daily, weekly, monthly and annual basis, providing background for identification and various improvement opportunities. These simple yet effective tools can become invaluable and lead to a much more highly functioning and efficient facility.

As the ever-wise Albus Dumbledore from the Harry Potter series stated, “Happiness can found, even in
the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” And perhaps, if one remembers to turn it off on occasion as well.