At EnergyDeck, we’re typically much better at working on platform improvements than we are at talking about them. We update the EnergyDeck system on a weekly or bi-weekly basis with a constant stream of improvements. In recent weeks we’ve also implemented a number of larger feature updates that we want to share at this point.
By way of summary, platform users now have access to:
- Custom Dashboards in their Home screens
- Custom Normalisations in Analytics
- Rolling Averages (also in Analytics)
- Reports that can be scheduled for email distribution and exported in DOCX format
Read on to learn more!
Custom Dashboards (Home)
EnergyDeck provides highly flexible reporting capabilities. Beyond the dynamic web platform charts in Analytics, users can also generate custom reports by adding various charts with their own configurations to a report template. This template can then be exported into PDF or DOCX formats (see further below for more Reports updates).
The new custom dashboards feature provides the capability for users to pin selected reports directly to the user’s Home screen. This is the default section that every user of the platform - free or paid - has access to. The dashboards only show sites that the user has been given access to by the account administrator, so privacy is fully maintained.
To use this feature, go to the Reports section in Analytics (note that this feature is only available in the Full Access accounts, which requires a subscription). Here you can select the reports you want to pin to the dashboard of all account users.
Notice the new “Dashboards” link with the down arrow in the second level navigator in the Home screen? This is where you can access your pinned reports.
Dashboards will be shown for the time period that was defined by the account admin when the report was created. The user can change the time period of the charts with the options available at the top of the Dashboard section (the content of the charts cannot be changed by the user, this can only be done via Reports). In addition, the user can delete specified reports from their own Dashboards list.
Custom Normalisations (Analytics > Trend Analysis)
To use this feature and the ones shown below, users need to have access to a full EnergyDeck account, as Analytics is not available in the free version of the platform.
Existing users of EnergyDeck will recall that it was already possible to normalise consumption and other metrics in Trend Analysis. But these normalisations options used to be fixed, and ‘only’ included floorspace (m2) and occupancy (FTE) related metrics (for hotels, an additional room nights normalisation option has been available).
Now we have made normalisations fully configurable! This means that users can choose to normalise any of the main metrics from the site / meter navigator on the left hand side (such as consumption, travel etc) against almost any other metric via the Ratio selector in Visualisation Options (typically these metrics / meters would be shown in the Overlays navigator on the bottom left of the screen). We say ‘almost’ simply because we’ve removed some metrics from the normalisation list that just wouldn’t make sense for practical purposes (such as kWh normalised by Amps etc.).
You will now find all the traditional normalisation metrics such as floor areas and occupancy in the new Ratio drop-down, in addition to new metrics such as temperature, degree days, production output and so on. Basically, if you can track it (via a meter input or automatic feed into the platform), you can now normalise against it automatically!
Rolling Averages (Analytics > Trend Analysis)
If you don’t know what a rolling average is or how you’d use it, then this update is maybe not of critical importance to you. For everyone else, this new feature should be quite self explanatory (as long as you remember to click on “More” in the new, expandable, Visualisation Options menu above the Analytics chart).
In summary, rolling averages provide a way to smooth chart data by overlaying a line that shows the average value for a number of preceding time periods. Imagine you’re looking at a site with monthly electricity consumption data. If you switch on a 3-month rolling average in this case, the line you will see shows the consumption data averaged over the previous three months.
You can select time periods (lengths) ranging between 2 to 12, and EnergyDeck will automatically show rolling averages for your selected chart resolution; this can be yearly, monthly, weekly and so on.
More flexible report scheduling export options (Analytics > Reports)
Our last update notification for today is around Reports. This feature is available in Analytics (again, you’ll need the full version of the platform to be able to use it).
It is now possible to schedule reports for email delivery to defined recipients and at defined intervals. To access this capability, go to Analytics > Reports > Configure Emails. Note that you need to have a dynamic time period selected (e.g. “last calendar month”, etc.) for this feature to work (we hope you’d agree that there is no point in sending users the same report for the same time range over and over via email).
In addition, we’re excited to announce that any report can now be exported as DOCX in addition to the already available PDF format. This means that you can now generate dynamic reports in EnergyDeck and then load them into e.g. Microsoft Word for further processing, including changes to the layout, format, and so on.
More to come
As always, we’re hard at work on further improvements, and in the next few weeks you can expect updates to the alert tracking and logging system and more granular, worldwide carbon factor sets. Among others, of course!
For any questions or feature suggestions (which all of the above mentioned updates are based on) please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.