Seven Considerations Before Bringing EV Charging to Your Workplace
February 5, 2021-
The transition to electrified transportation continues to gain momentum as more electric vehicle (EV) models emerge on the market, government incentive programs expand and the total share of EV passenger car sales grows. As EV usage grows across Canada, workplaces will be under increasing pressure to offer EV charging access for employees.
However, it is not as simple as just buying some stations and hiring an electrician. There are several considerations you need to account for:
1. The Big Question… Why Invest in Workplace Charging?
The EV rEVolution is here to stay! Every auto manufacturer in the world has made commitments to electrify their line-up and consumer demand continues to grow in the face of unstable gasoline prices and a desire to take climate change action. In short, you may not have a choice. Employers that approach workplace charging proactively stand a lot to gain:
- Talent attraction/retention
- Furthering corporate sustainability goals
- Increasing consumer perception and trust of your brand
- Staying relevant and ahead of the curve
2. Engaging Employees
You may already have employees who drive electric vehicles and/or many who are considering it. To increase the success of any workplace charging installation, it is important to involve your employees in the process.
Not only can your employees provide valuable insight into how to approach workplace charging, they can serve as EV ambassadors to their peers.
This can be done several ways; employee surveys, webinars, internal forums and news bulletins to name a few.
Throughout the process, it is important that your messaging remains consistent and that your organization has a clear position on electric transportation.
3. Developing a Charging Policy
Like any company asset, there needs to be clear rules in place regarding workplace charging stations. Your policy should include clearly defined roles and responsibilities regarding the procurement, installation and ongoing upkeep of the stations. It should also contain clearly defined rules regarding the use of the stations.
4. Choosing the Right Equipment
It is important to identify your desired features before approaching charging station suppliers, such as: networked or non-networked units, user access to the station, ongoing operating costs and maintenance. There are several charging station suppliers that offer a multitude of solutions. What one you go with should be informed by clearly set out requirements and expectations.
5. Installing Your Stations
The main factor that will impact the cost of your installation is where your charging stations will be located. Some site considerations to be mindful of are the proximity to the building’s electrical supply, accessibility and security. Where your charging stations go has a direct impact on how much work will be required and if they are not placed wisely it could lead to unexpected project costs.
6. Paying for the Electricity
There are a few cost models you can consider, including: free to use, free for employees, but not for visitors, different pricing for different times of day, etc. There are advantages and disadvantages to any pricing model. What one you put in place should be informed by your organizational goals and reasons for installing the stations in the first place?
7. Equipment Upkeep and Maintenance
Once the charging stations are installed, workplaces should define internal policies for their operation and maintenance, which includes management, access, signage, security and usage. Some considerations include designated times for vehicle swapping to give more staff access to the stations, priority use for employees holding positions that require travel and given priority to fully electric cars over plug-in hybrids.
Enabling workplace charging is a worthwhile undertaking that has benefits for employees and employers. Many industry leaders have already completed workplace charging installations or are in the process of doing so.
To discover more about enabling EV charging in your workplace, join Plug’n Drive and guest speakers from Hydro One, Siemens and Spark EV Charging Solutions for the Lead the Charge: Workplace Charging Webinar.