EV workplace charging explained for businesses, offices, commercial real estate, and facility management.
To adapt to the new era of mobility, many businesses are already electrifying their corporate fleets. EVs – and EV charging – at the workplace can help you attract and retain those much sought-after talented employees, while contributing to your organization’s sustainability objectives.
This guide is written to help facility managers, office managers, and business owners better understand the ins and outs of offering EV charging at the workplace so that you can make better future-proof decisions for your fleet electrification strategy.
million EVs in the EU in 2022
EU workplace chargers in 2022
million EVs in the EU in 2023
million workplace chargers in 2030
You might not think of EV charging as a key priority for your organization and corporate fleet. After all, your existing corporate fleet vehicles are serving you just fine, so why would you risk overhauling your strategy with fleet electrification?
The truth is, that EVs are rapidly gaining ground as a viable alternative to internal combustion engine vehicles, and employees increasingly value them as corporate cars. Not to mention that electrifying your fleet can help you tackle a significant source of your business’ emissions.
And this trend towards electrification shows no sign of slowing down:
The global momentum towards electric vehicles (EVs) is accelerating. Currently, there are over 20 million EVs on the world’s roads, this number is projected to soar to around 350 million by 2030.
The European Union (EU) mirrors this growth, expecting its 5.5 million EVs to rise to over 30 million within the same timeframe. In addition, Europe's charging infrastructure is set to expand tenfold, from 3 million today to approximately 35 million charging points by 2030, with workplace charging likely to increase from 10% to 15% of the total provision.
Meanwhile, consumer preference is also shifting, with over half of potential car buyers favoring EVs over traditional internal combustion engines, and almost 70% recognizing the crucial role of EVs in combating climate change.
On the policy front, 30 national governments have committed to phasing out new gasoline and diesel vehicle sales by 2040 globally, and even earlier in leading markets by 2035. The European Parliament aims to eliminate the sale of new internal combustion engine vehicles by 2050, while the UK has set a more ambitious target for 2030. In the United States, President Biden has bolstered this electric transition with a significant $7.5 billion investment in EV charging infrastructure, laying the groundwork for a more sustainable automotive landscape.
Combined, these stats paint a clear picture: electric mobility is the future.
This fact impacts every organization for several reasons. Firstly, even if they don’t drive electric already, many of your current employees today may want to go electric. Also, because many countries will stop selling regular gas cars, your company will need to start using electric cars eventually.
Instead of waiting until the last minute to transition, you can get ahead of this trend by planning your fleet electrification strategy today and considering your organization’s current and future EV charging needs. But how exactly do you go about shifting your organization to electric mobility
Let’s look at a few reasons why your company can benefit from corporate fleet electrification and installing EV charging stations.
Offering EVs as corporate fleet vehicles is a compelling benefit that can help you attract and retain top talent by meeting the mobility standard they are already expecting. As a growing number of people make the transition to electric mobility, they increasingly expect the same experience from their company cars.
Not only that, but our research shows that (potential) EV drivers are precisely the demographic you are looking for. Employers who can demonstrate meaningful sustainability initiatives may have an advantage in attracting and retaining talent in the current highly competitive recruitment market. So, offering EV fleet vehicles can help signal your organization’s commitment to sustainability.
But have you considered charging stations at your office?
The eight-hour workday is a perfect opportunity to plug in an electric vehicle: Drive up in the morning, park the car, work for the day, and drive off with a fully charged EV. It’s not surprising to find that, next to home charging, workplace charging is the most popular charging location for EV drivers.
The large majority of (potential) EV drivers are highly-educated and most are full-time employed, so chances are that the people you employ (or are looking to be employed in the future) fall into this category.
Equally, this talent pool is also looking for EV fleet vehicles as a benefit: nearly 6 out of 10 people have stated that an employer who offers electric business cars to their employees is considered more attractive to work for.
Offering EV fleet vehicles and charging stations as an employee benefit can make employees' lives tangibly easier, feel supported by their employer to live more sustainably, and help them meaningfully contribute to their organization’s climate goals.
Providing employees with company EVs is only part of the fleet electrification equation. Employees will need somewhere to charge their corporate cars, and the workplace is one of the most convenient locations for them to do so.
Not to mention that having the option to charge at work. Recently, EY found that 25% see inadequate home/workplace charging infrastructure as the main blocker to getting an electric car.
This leaves a significant opportunity for employers to solve a key challenge many of their employees face.
The majority of the workers use their cars to commute to work, the impact of going electric is huge. Take into account that private cars and vans were responsible for more than 25% of global oil use and around 10% of global energy-related CO2 emissions in 2022.
Equipping your workplace with EV charging stations and transitioning your fleet to EVs can help your employees cut down on their carbon footprint and that of your company as a whole. For all these reasons, EV charging can be a valuable asset and an important part of your company’s sustainability strategy.
Being part of a company with a well-known commitment to sustainability is a badge of pride, and EV charging stations tend to stand out—literally. Unlike many sustainability initiatives, installing EV charging stations is a noticeable contribution to your building’s physical location.
EV charging stations in your parking lot will show your employees and guests that your organization is committed to sustainability and ready for the future. Plus, with the latest smart charging technology, EV charging stations can integrate into your building’s energy management system, distribute the available load over multiple stations safely.
Simply put, by offering EV charging at the workplace, you can reduce your organization’s carbon footprint, become more energy efficient, and accelerate your journey to zero emissions.
Take our partner Unilever, for example, who by electrifying a big chunk of their parking infrastructure at their R&D Development center in the Netherlands, has offered charging facilities to their employees and visitors since 2019.
Last year alone, these stations have delivered over 45,000 kWh. Given an EV’s average energy consumption of 0.20 kilowatt-hour (kWh) per kilometer, this equals approximately 225.000 kilometers in range added for Unilever’s employees and visitors.
To put it in perspective that’s enough range to drive nearly 6 times around the world.
What makes this even more special is that Unilever’s office is one of the most sustainable multifunctional buildings in the world. Built from heaps of recycled parts and powered by over 1,800 solar panels and solar cells.
By supplying 225,000 kilometers of range with 100% clean energy in one year (and zero emissions while driving) the emission of 25,000 kg of CO2 has been avoided.
Of course, EV charging (or electric mobility for that matter) is not the silver bullet that will solve all your sustainability challenges, but it’s certainly a piece of the puzzle.
The majority of the global workforce still commutes to work by car. Even in countries considered sustainability frontrunners, like the Netherlands, over 50 percent of the workforce drives to their workplaces. According to the EY Mobility Consumer Index 2023, one out of every two new car buyers would prefer an EV.
Of course, providing fleet EVs to employees isn’t the only solution for leveraging the positive effects of electric mobility at the workplace. Offering charging stations is a great way too. Let’s take a look
Only Three years ago, only 20 percent of the general population wanted a business EV. Now, according to the EY 2023 report, up to 55 percent of consumers have the intention to purchase an electric car. Offering your employees an EV is only one of the ways your business can get involved in the electric mobility revolution.
You can also install EV charging stations at your business. Charge Up Europe predicts that the total share of Workplace charging infrastructure in Europe will increase from 10% today to 15% in 2030, and private charging will account for more than 94% of the charging infrastructure deployed.
Offering EV charging for free to employees might sound counterintuitive at first. After all, there is a cost to the electricity used for charging EVs, and covering that cost for employees’ personal vehicles might seem like an unnecessary expense.
The fact is, workplace EV charging is a valued employee benefit: 70 percent of those driving electric and 60 percent of the general population think businesses should offer EV charging as an employee benefit.
In a world where the lines between work and home are often blurred, you can consider extending your employee benefits to the home too, especially for corporate fleet vehicles. Using smart charging systems and integrated software, you can set up home reimbursement for your employees.Did you know that one in two people would like to see employers cover the charging costs of a business electric car at their homes?
It might be that offering free charging is not an affordable solution for your business. Or, maybe you can decide to provide free or discounted charging for employees but open up your facility’s EV charging to third parties, such as visitors and other EV drivers, for a fee.
We all know that the war for talent is raging. While we’re not going to tell you that fleet electrification and EV charging are the sole solutions to attracting and retaining top talent, our research has shown that they can solve a major challenge that some of your (prospective) employees may face and boost employee satisfaction.
The vast majority of EV drivers are employed full-time, and well educated, and around one in three of them is under 35. This highly attractive and in-demand talent pool has a variety of opportunities to choose from, and offering a benefits package that fits their lives is the key to making your company stand out.
This becomes even more pronounced with the forward-thinking generations of Millennials and Gen Z occupying the workforce. Global analytics and advisory firm, Gallup, has discovered that the new workforce demands an organization with high purpose when choosing where to work.
Forward-thinking businesses are capitalizing on this trend and allowing their office’s EV charging to demonstrate their sustainability commitments.
As the number of EVs is only predicted to grow in the coming years, the demand for charging infrastructure is rising rapidly.
While we certainly believe that investing in EV charging stations for your workplace is beneficial, be aware that as driving electric becomes more popular, not having enough charging stations available can decrease employee satisfaction, the exact opposite of the intended outcome. According to our research, 68 percent of EV drivers today feel that there aren’t enough EV charging stations available at the workplace.
So, when considering an investment in EV charging stations, make sure you understand the needs and requirements of your business so you can right-size the infrastructure you install.
Sustainability is complex. No one silver bullet can shift the needle for our planet (or your organization) toward a sustainable future. Instead, it’s about integrating multiple solutions into a bigger picture, like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle.
From sourcing, energy and resource use, and waste management to transportation, there are many processes within an organization that contribute to climate change. As such, an organization's emissions reduction strategy should be holistic and address the many different sources of emissions from the organization. So, where do EVs fit in with your business sustainability strategy?
You might not think about it, but your company’s environmental footprint extends beyond its direct operations. From how the energy used to power your facilities is sourced to the impact your products have on the planet, there are a range of factors to consider when crafting your sustainability strategy.
Reducing emissions from both Scope 1 (company facilities and vehicles) and 2 (purchased energy) can be done in several ways: making buildings more energy efficient, swapping to a renewable energy provider, installing solar panels, or transitioning your corporate fleet to EVs.
Plus, as the technology that supports these emissions reductions evolves (such as smart EV charging features like vehicle-to-grid and load balancing), these systems are beginning to integrate with one another.
In other words, fleet electrification and installing EV charging stations can connect different pieces of the sustainability puzzle and act as a catalyst of the energy transition, making them a valuable part of your sustainable business strategy and helping to reduce your carbon footprint.
To address the growing demand for and uneven deployment of charging infrastructure today, many national governments, cities, and regional municipalities offer incentives and grants for EV charging stations.
Depending on the country and region, these incentives are commonly available to individuals and companies alike, often considerably reducing the cost of installing new EV charging stations.
While some governments focus solely on residential charging, many have grant schemes directed toward commercial use. For instance:
For the EU, we’ve compiled a list of all available commercial (and residential) charging station incentives in Europe.
In the UK, the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS) is a voucher-based scheme that covers up to 75 percent of the up-front costs of purchasing and installing electric vehicle charge points.
In the US, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill’s National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) provides various sources of federal funding for the development of commercial EV charging stations.
Keep these incentives in mind when planning your fleet electrification or workplace charging strategy and consider which ones can apply to your situation, as they can be a powerful tool to reduce the cost of your investment.
It can be tempting to simply select the fastest, newest, or most cost-efficient technology in the market when looking to install EV charging stations at your workplace. However, your first pick might not always be the best suited to your company and your employees’ needs.
The most important part of choosing the right EV charging station for your corporate fleet is considering your employees’ habits and work patterns. And link those to expected charging behavior.
In one of our REVOLUTION podcast, we asked Peter Cohen, Director of Business Development at TeraWatt Infrastructure and asked him where to start.
"It's having a sense of motivation, alignment, and goal. And then understanding, how much charging do you need to operate optimally?” - Peter Cohen
Here are 6 questions your organization should ask itself.
A workplace charging station’s power output – and thus, the speeds it can achieve – is one of the factors in determining how costly your EV charging installation will be.
Of course, there is often a need for fast charging: if your employees are on the road a lot and only come back to the office for short breaks throughout the day, DC fast charging stations offer the perfect solution for quick top-ups.
On the other hand, if most of your employees work 9 to 5, you’ll probably find AC charging stations a much better-suited solution. Depending on their power output, these can add 120 kilometers of range in an hour. Making them a perfect fit for corporate fleet vehicles parked during most of the day.
It’s also common for organizations to offer multiple charging speeds to cater to different types of users. For instance, you might want to provide mostly slower AC charging stations to your employees while keeping a few fast DC charging stations available to clients or visitors needing a quick top-up.
Just like our partner, and European leader in technical services for mobility solutions, Technical Services Group (TSG), who installed a DC fast charger at their headquarters in Paris, France.
“Usually, DC charging is seen at more strategic locations along the highway where drivers can quickly charge on-the-go, but we have found that using it in our workplace has satisfied our employees.” – Ludovic Parsigneau, EV Technical Director at TSG
While offering EV charging in conjunction with corporate fleet vehicles or as an employee benefit has its advantages, another approach that some organizations have is to offer charging as a paid service.
Some even choose to make their charging stations available to the general public. Doing so can add an additional revenue stream to the company and increase the ROI.
Depending on the size of your corporate fleet – and whether you offer EV charging to employees as a benefit – the scale of your installation can be very different.
Given the rapid uptake of electric mobility, it’s important to also consider scalability from the very beginning.
For example, what is the electrical load capacity of your facility, and is it worth upgrading? Is there space for additional charging stations in the future? Given the substantial investment to install EV chargers, it’s essential to consider how your workplace’s charging needs will evolve, allowing you space to adapt your site to future advancements.
As Linda Grave, CEO of EV Driver mentioned in our REVOLUTION Podcast
“If you’re building for today, you’re already behind.”
Software might be the last thing on your mind when considering your corporate fleet electrification strategy. The truth is, that the software that powers workplace EV charging stations is just as instrumental to their good performance as their hardware. Just as corporate fleet management is key to getting the most out of your EV fleet, a good charging management system can optimize your company’s EV infrastructure.
Especially if you’re operating a number of EV charging stations or have different locations, a charging management software can streamline charging station management, allow you to set charging tariffs, monitor performance, increase energy efficiency, automate invoicing and billing, and get actionable insights based on charging behavior.
Or as Hanno Klausmeijer, Hanno Klausmeier, director of SAP Labs France. Mentioned in Revolution Podcast.
“To be quite honest at the beginning, I wasn't even aware that you can supervise or monitor charging sessions."
Depending on local requirements and the scale of your EV charging installation, you might need to involve site owners and consider local authorities for permits or zoning requirements. If your business operates across different locations, approaching each location as a separate project is essential, as they likely have different requirements and constraints. By understanding the limitations and the concerns of key stakeholders early on, you can better anticipate the needs of your location and avoid costly delays in the future.
A charging station is not just a one-time investment—rather, it is a service that needs to be kept up and running. Just like any other type of hardware, EV charging stations need maintenance and care to avoid unpleasant issues. When choosing a corporate EV charging station, it’s essential to look at the whole lifecycle of the charger and find a partner that offers an extended warranty as well as after-sales services, including commissioning, support, and maintenance. After all, charging stations are only valuable if they’re up and running.
The future looks bright for EV fleets and workplace EV charging – as more people embrace electric mobility, the demand for fleet EVs and workplace charging stations is only predicted to grow. Beyond attracting and retaining talent, fleet electrification can help cut your organization’s carbon footprint and even generate revenue from charging fees.
According to our Mobility Monitor industry report, employees want electric corporate fleet vehicles, and EV-driving employees want to charge at work. However, only 32 percent of current EV drivers indicate that there is a sufficient number of charging stations at their workplaces.
Organizations like yours have a key opportunity to meet this gap demand while providing a sought-after benefit that helps boost your company’s image. To learn more about how you can adopt electric mobility for your company, take a look at our workplace EV charging solutions.
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