Part of my internship at WegoWise required me to do a final project at the end of the internship. This project would take from what I learned throughout the internship and give back an idea proposal to the company. I decided to focus on a product that expands the company’s mission which is: “catalyze environmental, social and economic sustainability in the built environment”. When I first started at the company I thought that it was an energy tracking and clean energy consulting company; that we would track clients’ energy or water usage and tell them how to reduce their usage and costs. But I quickly that that was clean energy consulting and we were just the energy tracking and benchmarking side of things. We have an extensive database and we are really good at telling the client if they are less efficient than their peer buildings. However, there is an issue with liability when we make recommendations. If the client does not get the savings that we tell them they will achieve then we have problems.
So this gap of identifying the problem vs finding a solution is what I wanted to focus on for my final project. How can we make recommendations to our clients to promote sustainability without holding the liability and acting as consultants. I came up with the idea of using our database of buildings to simply present the facts to clients for them to make an educated investment. Clients log their building upgrades on the wegowise site so that they can see the change in their usage or costs post-retrofit. We can compile all the data that the clients have logged to present statistical stats to clients looking to improve the efficiency of their buildings.
Instead of focussing on the data analysis I focused on the product idea and what it would look like on the website; wireframing. When the client is told that their building is inefficient for the gas utility compared to their peers there would be a “take action” button. This button would open up a “retrofit box” that would show retrofit options for gas. Each retrofit would include a description of the retrofit, the number of buildings in wegowise that underwent the retrofit, the average expected savings for the retrofit, and the average cost of the retrofit for peer properties (similar in size, climate, etc). There would be the same type of box for water and electricity. The box would also include a search box for the client to look up these stats for any other retrofit they had heard of or are considering.
This feature would allow wegowise to expand from data tracking and into problem solving for a greener future.