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Building Operator Certification

Building Operator Certification (BOC)

Building better energy performance

NEEA’s Building Operator Certification (BOC) Expansion program provides technical training to improve energy performance for commercial and industrial buildings through operation and maintenance best practices for HVAC, lighting, and controls systems.

In an effort to reach more organizations and companies that operate buildings in the Northwest, NEEA partnered with BOC’s national program. NEEA’s Regional BOC Expansion initiative aims to accelerate adoption of energy efficiency practices by addressing market barriers to participation in BOC, such as lack of time, ability to pay, lack of service in rural markets, lack of awareness, and product performance standard. The goal of the initiative is to increase the value placed on BOC by employers and operators, which will lead to persistent energy savings over time.

By developing a regional market for educated and certified building operators, NEEA will work to achieve lasting improvement in the energy-efficient operation and maintenance (O&M) of commercial buildings serving K-12, government, higher education, healthcare, commercial real estate, hospitality, and manufacturing across the Northwest.

At 16 years, BOC is the longest-running energy-efficiency training and certification program in the industry and has demonstrated increased energy savings. Regionally, based on the estimated 286,000 square feet managed by each certified operator, estimated annual savings are $20,000.

  • Building Operator Certificate Program Dataset Analysis
    This memo documents the analysis of the Northwest Energy Efficiency Council Building Operator Certification (BOC) program dataset as of 2015. The goal of this effort, conducted each year as part of the BOC evaluation, is to describe the 2015 new BOC certificants and update the count of active BOC certificants in the Northwest region (Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington). Active certificants are those individuals who have received or renewed the BOC credential since 2010 and are the individuals for whom the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance counts energy savings for 2015. The results of the analysis find 228 new 2015 certifications and 115 certificants whose savings retired in 2015. In all, BOC has certified 2,796 individuals, of whom 1,568 are currently active.
    PDF, 438.11 KB
  • Building Operator Certificate Renewal Rate Assumptions Memorandum
    This memorandum summarizes research on renewal rates for professional certification programs conducted as part of the Building Operator Certification Expansion (BOC-E) program for the 2015-16 long-term monitoring and tracking study. The primary objective of this research was to determine whether support exists for the current BOC-E certificate target renewal rate of 70 percent, which appears in the logic model associated with the 10th market progress indicator. The findings of this study indicate that Building Operator Certification renewal rates are slightly lower than for most other certifications targeting professionals in the energy and building trades sector. However, the report recommends a downward adjustment of the 70 percent target renewal rate as a result of a detailed analysis of how the target was selected, finding it to be inflated.
    PDF, 419.20 KB
  • BOC-Expansion Initiative Market Progress Evaluation Report #3
    This is the third Market Progress Evaluation Report (MPER) of the Building Operator Certification Expansion Initiative. The Northwest Energy Efficiency Council, Northwest Water and Energy Education Institute, and the International Building Operators Association have offered Building Operator Certification (BOC) training and certification to facility operators in the Northwest since 1997. In 2012, the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance established BOC-E to accelerate adoption of BOC and increase its market penetration in the Northwest. This report offers several important findings. The building operator market is larger than previously estimated. With new and updated data, the new estimate of the market size is more than 20,000 operators. With about 2,400 currently employed BOC operators, market penetration is about 12 percent. Levels in Idaho and Montana are similar to Washington and Oregon. This resolves an incongruous finding from MPER #2 that suggested a much higher penetration rate in Idaho and Montana than in Washington and Oregon. The average per-operator natural gas (therm) savings for Idaho and Montana is about 8 percent - twice as high as in Washington and Oregon. Electricity savings are about the same for the two sub-regions. This report makes several recommendations including expanding efforts to increase employer support of BOC participation and renewal, particularly among large employers.
    PDF, 1.23 MB

Video Spotlight

Stories from the Field

Building Operator Certification (BOC®) is a hands-on training in HVAC, lighting and energy benchmarking for the region’s building maintenance employees. Through BOC training, these employees gain the experience and competitive knowledge to help their facilities improve building energy performance.

Watch how it works

NEEA Team Lead

Kim Hughes

Sr. Program Manager