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Two ASHRAE certification programs, the Building Commissioning Professional (BCxP) and the Building Energy Assessment Professional (BEAP), recently received recognition by the Department of Energy for meeting Better Buildings Workforce Guidelines (BBWG). The Better Buildings Workforce Guidelines program establishes a clear set of guidelines that industry stakeholders are able to leverage towards the development of successful training and certification programs. These guidelines have streamlined pathways for both new and experienced professionals to improve skillsets and show potential employers that they meet desired qualifications for commercial building projects.

Established in 1894, ASHRAE is a global society advancing human well-being through sustainable technology for the built environment. ASHRAE certification programs are developed by industry practitioners who understand the knowledge and experience expected for superior building design and system operation. The BCxP and BEAP certifications were developed to align with the BBWG’s building commissioning professional and building energy auditor certification schemes, respectively.

The recognition of these two ASHRAE certification programs by DOE lessens the burden on employers, building owners, government officials, and program administrators of sifting through many different certifications to determine which one leads to the most competent candidate pool. The BEAP certification validates an individual’s competency to assess building systems and site conditions, analyze and evaluate equipment and energy usage, and recommend strategies to optimize building resource utilization. The BCxP certification validates competency to lead, plan, coordinate, and manage a commissioning team to implement commissioning processes in new and existing buildings. Both certifications require applicants to meet minimum eligibility requirements prior to sitting for their respective certification exam.

Building commissioning and building energy audits are complex undertakings and involve advanced knowledge of building systems and their interactions, which allow for the early detection and resolution of performance issues. The integral role of a building commissioning professional in improving upon project performance from the design phase through post-construction and occupancy makes it imperative for building owners to have the ability to identify highly skilled and qualified professionals. BBWG recognition of the BCxP and BEAP certifications, developed and conferred through ASHRAE, simplifies the hiring process for building owners, saving them time and money, while they work toward the completion of a high-performance facility that meets their operational goals.