Opinion

The reason workplace electric vehicle charging is key to adoption of EVs

There is simply no way to combat the climate crisis without addressing transport, which represents 33 per cent of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the UK.

That’s one of the reasons you’ll be seeing a lot more electric vehicle (EV)models on UK roads in the coming years. According to the Government, EVs offer the “least cost pathway” to achieving the country’s goal of net zero GHGs by 2050. EV adoption will require massive expansion of the necessary charging infrastructure.

Since, in a city like London where 4 of 5 cars park on the street, home charging is simply not a viable option for most drivers, it falls to business to assume the mantle of helping bring EVs into the mainstream.

Christopher Burghardt, Managing Director Europe at ChargePoint Inc explains that there are clear advantages for those that choose to take it up.

Your Employees Will Drive Electric

Predictions indicate there may be as many as 10.6 million EVs in the country by 2030, representing a 5200 per cent increase in a single decade! Those drivers will include your friends, family, neighbours and, more importantly, your employees. Historically, people have chosen to work for employers that offer the kinds of benefits that make their lives easier, yet today 75 per cent of employees still don’t have access to EV charging at work. Workplace charging helps businesses attract talent while increasing engagement, retention and loyalty among current employees.

Sustainability Is A Priority for CEOs, Consumers and Workers

Nearly all large-company CEOs surveyed in a recent  United Nations Global Compact-Accenture Strategy CEO Study on Sustainability agreed that “sustainability issues are important to the future success of their businesses.” For several years, it was consumer demand that pushed brands to go green, but in today’s candidate-driven job market, it is often employees. Most people want to work for sustainable companies and 42 per cent say they’d take a pay cut for the privilege! Workplace charging reminds your employees that working for your organisation aligns with their values.

EV Charging Is More Affordable—and Effective—Than Other Employee Perks

Studies find low-cost amenities such as foosball tables in the office provide almost no value for most workers and can even be counterproductive. Other benefits, such as wellness schemes, are difficult to evaluate and may not even be a benefit at all. Contrast that with EV charging, which offers a compelling return on investment (ROI) for your company and your employees alike. In a tight labour market, it’s important to offer employees benefits they can actually use. Generous Government incentives can make the cost of infrastructure comparable to far less expensive benefits as well.

EVs Are Good for the Planet and Health

While climate change has long dominated discussions on sustainability, there’s another excellent reason for business to support the switch to electric vehicles that hits closer to home: air pollution. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 47 British cities and towns “meet or exceed the safe pollution limits,” lowering both the quality of life and the lifespans of millions of citizens. In the UK, 80 per cent of noxious emissions are due to transport.

Air pollution is linked to a number of illnesses and conditions, including cardiovascular disease, some cancers, dementia, respiratory diseases, low birth weight and type 2 diabetes, amongst many others. A healthy workforce is good for society and good for your company. Driving electric, powered by clean energy sources, enables zero-emissions transport – if adopted by the masses, air pollution levels would drop, benefiting our planet and health.

EV Charging Is Good for Business

In the US, employees with access to workplace EV charging are 6X more likely to drive electric. New research from the Energy Technology Institute suggests similar driver behaviours here in the UK. The Consumers, Vehicles and Energy Integration Project (CVEI) goes further, suggesting drivers would spend more for the car itself, noting: “Access to workplace charging added £564 to what participants would be willing to pay for a BEV.”

Brands that offer workplace charging realise electric mobility (e-mobility) is inevitable and they’ve decided to ride the wave rather than weather a storm.

Tackling climate change and pollution requires an all-hands-on-deck effort. The switch to e-mobility represents one of humanity’s best hopes to tip the scale back in our favour. But, if we’ve learned nothing else throughout history, it’s that even difficult change is possible—and even profitable.

EV charging offers foresighted businesses an enormous opportunity: one that benefits employees, stakeholders, customers and even the bottom line. Organisations offering workplace EV charging will have an overwhelming competitive advantage in the coming years. Will you be able to say you were part of the solution?

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