Facility managers play a critical role in maintaining and operating buildings. They are responsible for ensuring that buildings are safe, functional, and efficient. One way for facility managers to achieve these goals is through building certification programs. Building certification can help facility managers improve building operations in several ways, from reducing energy usage to increasing tenant satisfaction. In this article, we will discuss the advantages of building certification for facility managers.
Building certification programs are designed to assess a building’s environmental performance based on several criteria. These criteria may include energy usage, water usage, waste management, indoor air quality, and the use of sustainable materials. The certification process involves an independent third party who evaluates the building’s performance against these criteria and awards a certification if it meets the necessary standards.
One of the primary advantages of building certification for facility managers is that it can help reduce energy usage. Buildings are responsible for a significant amount of energy consumption, and reducing energy usage can have a significant impact on the environment. Building certification programs often focus on energy usage, and the certification process can identify areas where energy efficiency can be improved. For example, the certification process may identify areas where lighting can be upgraded or where HVAC systems can be optimized. Making these changes can not only reduce energy consumption but can also lead to cost savings for building owners.
Building certification can also help facility managers improve indoor air quality. Poor indoor air quality can lead to health problems for building occupants, including respiratory issues and allergies. Building certification programs evaluate the building’s ventilation systems and can identify areas where improvements can be made. For example, the certification process may identify areas where filters need to be replaced or where ventilation systems need to be adjusted. Improving indoor air quality can lead to a healthier and more productive work environment for building occupants.
In addition to improving energy usage and indoor air quality, building certification can also help increase tenant satisfaction. Tenants are becoming increasingly aware of the impact of buildings on the environment and are looking for buildings that prioritize sustainability. Building certification programs provide a way for facility managers to demonstrate their commitment to sustainability, which can lead to increased tenant satisfaction. Tenants are also more likely to renew their leases in buildings that prioritize sustainability, which can lead to cost savings for building owners.
Another advantage of building certification is that it can help facility managers reduce waste. Building certification programs evaluate waste management systems and can identify areas where improvements can be made. For example, the certification process may identify areas where recycling programs can be expanded or where composting systems can be implemented. Reducing waste not only has environmental benefits but can also lead to cost savings for building owners.
Building certification programs also provide a framework for continuous improvement. Once a building has been certified, the certification is typically valid for a set period, after which the building must be recertified. This provides an opportunity for facility managers to evaluate their building’s performance over time and identify areas where further improvements can be made. By continuously improving building operations, facility managers can not only reduce their carbon footprint but can also reduce operating costs and increase tenant satisfaction.
There are several building certification programs available, each with its own set of criteria and standards. One of the most well-known building certification programs is the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program. The LEED program is designed to assess the environmental performance of buildings and is widely recognized as a benchmark for sustainable building design and operation. Other building certification programs include the Green Globes program and the Living Building Challenge.
In addition to the environmental and economic benefits of building certification, there are also social benefits. Building certification programs prioritize the health and well-being of building occupants, which can lead to increased job satisfaction and productivity. Additionally, building certification programs often require the use of sustainable materials, which can help support local economies and reduce the carbon footprint associated with transportation.