Research Report

Training the Workforce for High-Performance Buildings: Enhancing Skills for Operations and Maintenance

September 29, 2020

High-performance commercial buildings deliver exceptional energy efficiency and comfort, reduce building-related carbon emissions, and offer many other benefits. Because these buildings are becoming increasingly automated — and rely on advanced technology, controls, and systems integration — the skillsets required to operate and maintain them will continue to increase in depth and breadth. This report identifies essential skills for the high-performance buildings workforce and finds that building operations and maintenance (O&M) is the most important skillset according to an original survey and expert interviews. The report discusses several training programs that provide continuing education for the existing workforce and career-oriented training for new entrants to the field. It concludes with strategies that utilities, program administrators, and policy makers can use to improve workforce education and training to broaden the pool of skilled building professionals.

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