Arjun Harindranath
Published on
April 24, 2023
5 min read

More workplaces are offering EV charging. Here’s why.

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A growing trend among workplaces is to offer EV charging on site as an amenity for their staff. This article covers the benefits and opportunities that lie in workplace charging.

For workers that commute, offices or office buildings sometimes offer parking as an amenity. As more EVs hit the road, could EV charging also be offered to employees? This is the question many workplaces are now asking themselves. 

According to the US Department of Energy (DOE), 70-80% of all EV charging happens either at home or at work. However, the EV charging infrastructure hasn’t yet been built out to make the amenity commonplace at US workplaces. Even in regions where EV charging has matured, workplace charging remains a luxury. For example, in the UK it was found that 46% of workplaces don’t have access to a charger. 

Why offer EV charging at your workplace?

Charging at work can offer benefits to the employee, the company as well as the local grid and environment at large. We’ll look at how each stands to gain from allowing workplace charging.

Workplace charging benefits employees

Charging an EV at the office has the obvious benefit of being convenient to an employee as they can charge during their time at work. Many workplaces can also offer reduced rates (or even free charging) to their staff members which can be an incentive for some to charge at work rather than at home or on the road.  

Following the pandemic, many workers have pressed their employers for more remote or hybrid roles. Workplace charging can be an added benefit for those who travel into work and could have a positive impact on employee morale and satisfaction with the company.

Offering unique benefits at a time when electrification is still nascent could also be a differentiator that acts as both an important tool to recruit the best talent while also future proofing the business as EVs become more commonplace. 

Charging at work is great for employers

Employers can benefit from workplace charging too. For one, by encouraging the use of electric vehicles, a company can reduce its carbon footprint, which is a crucial factor in determining its ESG score. EV charging can be seen as a socially responsible measure, as it promotes sustainable transportation options for employees. By embracing sustainable technologies, a company can position itself as a leader in the sustainability space and increase its ESG score.

In addition to this, businesses can also offer charging as an amenity to clients as well as their employees. For companies who invest further, it could also be seen as a way to monetize at office buildings where they share parking with other businesses.

Workplace charging reduces strain on the grid

Many businesses worry that offering workplace charging will cause undue strain on the grid and could lead to sporadic energy crises or the urgent necessity of new power plants to deal with surges in demand. However, in a 2023 study from researchers at MIT, it was found that it was possible to mitigate the problems of peak demand without the need for advanced technological systems of connected devices and real-time communications. 

The researchers found that strategic placement of the chargers as well as setting up systems to allow for delayed charging would help the grid. In particular, it was found that better availability of charging stations at workplaces could help reduce the evening peak load from EV charging .

Workplace charging encourages EV adoption

Let’s not forget that increasing the number of EVs is good for the environment in the long run too! In major cities where commute times are long, having workers switch to electric will have an important impact on reducing carbon emissions. It has also been found that offering workplace charging can entice more workers to switch to electric. 

Fortunately, many governments are now understanding the importance of having more chargers at workplaces and are introducing rebates and other EV charging schemes to help install infrastructure on site. In the UK, eligible businesses can have up to 75% of the costs of their chargepoint purchase and installation covered. Similar plans are also being considered in Massachusets as the state government approved a $400 million plan that included support to chargers and the offer of rebates to businesses at workplaces.

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