Cloud Computing 101 – The Internet – The Web

Cloud computing and BIM are disruptive technologies that will finally alter the culture and fundamental framework of how the AECOO sector (Architecture, Engineering, Construction, Owner, Operations) does business.   To appreciate this potential, however, requires a basic understanding of the following terms: The Internet – The Web – Cloud Computing – BIM.

The Internet is the substrate underlying the web and emerged from Darpa-funded (Defense Advanced Research Project Agency) work in the 1970s.  The Internet is a global system of interconnected computer networks   that use the standard protocols, for example,  TCP/IP, to serve billions of users worldwide. It is a network of networks that consists of millions of private, public, academic, business, and government networks, of local to global scope, that are linked by a broad array of electronic, wireless and optical networking technologies. The Internet carries an extensive range of information resources and services, such as the inter-linked hypertext   documents of the web (world wide web, www.) and the infrastructure to support email.

The Web  (world wide web, www.) was invented by Tim Berners-Lee at CERN (Conseil Européen pour la Recherche Nucléaire /European Organization for Nuclear Research)  in the early 1990s.  The web is a system  of interlinked hypertext documents accessed via the Internet.  With a browser (Explore, Chrome, Firefox…) one can view web pages that may contain text, images, videos, and other multimedia and between them via hyperlinks.

Having worked with both, including deploying on of the first truly web-based FM applications in 1998, I appreciate the scope of these two words.  Many, if not most, do not.

Now on to Cloud Computing, the delivery of standards-based computing, applications, and storage as a service to a public or private community of recipients.  It is the the delivery of   a standards-based method of providing service in a wide variety of virtual and physical domains that is a key aspect.   Computers now existing  in our homes, offices, cars, and pockets, and virtual computers exist in the cloud.  Computers have traditionally have worked within data networks as clients;  consuming but not provide services. This is changing rapidly, Computers that live in the cloud provide as well as consume services. This differentiation may be of little importance to many/most businesses whose computers are being “virtualized”, the processed of simply moving data/IT centers off-premises.   In this case, day to day processes, and fundamental business practices are not being affected.

Standards and services, and the unparalleled level of collaboration resulting from integration the Internet, Web, and Cloud Computing are converging to create a wave of change that is  now upon us. 

The cloud is social... on a very personal level.  For example, computers performing services for us live in the cloud, alongside computers that work for other people in the same and within other organizations.  People doing the same, similar, or related tasks in different locations, languages, currencies, etc.   How effectively your computers can work for your depends on how well they provide services accessible to those other computers.  This requires data standards, common processes, common lexicon, …..  If computers and people they don’t use common, robust terms/formats/processes, they can’t provide those services, and so they can’t efficiently, accurately, securely, and transparently do their jobs.

So, what’s cloud computing?  Computers and people working collaboratively and providing enhanced productivity, speed, accuracy, security, and transparency for you.  Everything working together and “playing nicely”, with virtually no bandwidth  limitation within an ecosystem of standards-based services. worth.   Thus, don’t fall for “cloud-washing”, the practice of taking legacy applications and porting them to virtual servers in the cloud.  You gain nothing.   Do your homework and look for standards-based true cloud computing applications that can “play nice” with everyone and deliver a better, faster, and actually fun way of doing work!

Now for BIM.  BIM, building information modeling, is the efficient life-cycle management of the built environment.  BIM requires standards, common terms/lexicon, collaboration, cloud-computing, robust processes, efficient delivery methods, and so much more. The below graphics highlight components of a BIM framework.

BIM Framework

Public Law 111-308 – Federal Buildings Personnel Training Act – FBPTA – CORE COMPETENCIES

Via – Premier software for cost estimating and efficient project delivery for renovation, repair, and sustainability – JOC, SABER, IDIQ, SATOC, MATOC, MACC, POCA, BOA ….

In accordance with Public Law 111-308, The Federal Buildings Personnel Training Act, GSA identified the core competencies contained in the attachment for personnel performing building operations and maintenance, energy management,  safety and design functions. The core competencies identified include competencies relating to building operations and maintenance, energy management, sustainability, water efficiency, safety (including electrical safety) and building performance measures. The core competencies will be updated annually per the law.

Congress passed FBPTA to ensure that the Federal building operations workforce is adequately trained, and that Federal buildings are maximally productive and properly serviced to achieve the highest possible return on investment over projected operating life.  The Act requires GSA, in collaboration with the Department of Defense and the Department of Energy, to identify the necessary core competencies for Federal building operations and management personnel, the methods required for demonstrating these core competencies, and a recommended course curriculum for all personnel involved in building operations and management, energy management, sustainability, water efficiency, safety, design, and performance measurement.

…”described by House and Senate Republicans as “green” legislation to create cutting edge energy conservation technology jobs.”

…”the bill is supposed to cut federal government energy costs and train the federal building maintenance work force in the use of high performance technologies for energy conservation in federal buildings.”

Federal Buildings Personnel Training Act

Core Competencies June 2012                                                                                                           

In accordance with the Federal Buildings Personnel Training Act 2010 (FBPTA), the enclosed core competencies are identified for personnel performing building operations and maintenance, energy management, sustainability, water efficiency, safety (including electrical safety), building performance measures and design functions.

Law requires an annual update of this curriculum, allowing it to evolve over time. This release represents the results of significant consultation with representatives from Federal departments and agencies, relevant professional societies, industry associations and apprenticeship training providers, as well as subject matter experts from academic institutions. Our Program to implement the FBPTA will continuously evolve; through lessons learned from this initial release and successive updates, in response to technological breakthroughs and improvements, in order to highlight transformational policies, processes and procedures, and in response to changes in funding and philosophical constraints. We will remain in constant consultation with the stakeholders mentioned above.

Legislative Intent:

Taxpayer investment in Federal facilities must be protected and leveraged through the cost savings involved in maximizing building performance. Achieving this level of performance requires a government-­‐wide program that stresses training and continuing education in the implementation of industry best practices and lifecycle operations and management. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Report-­‐ paraphrased  



The evolution of the enclosed core competencies began with a Federal listening session and the modification of a Department of Energy

Workforce Standardization Project. We modified the energy job task analyses to include facilities operations and management activities. We also held an additional Federal listening session and an Industry Symposium. The completed Job Task Analyses (JTA) were released for public review and comment. Comments revealed that the JTAs were so comprehensive that no single person could acquire all of the skills and experience captured – even over a lifetime in the profession. This lead to the development of a paired down version of the knowledge, skills and abilities (core competencies) arranged into three levels with associated pay grades and military ranks.

The Facility Manager section was then put out for public comment in the FedBizOpps and sent to more than 200 representatives from government, industry and academia. Comments were transformative in that they made it very clear that a government-­‐wide Program to implement the FBPTA, must be agnostic to GS job series or pay grade. Departments and Agencies across the Federal government have personnel operating and managing facilities from many different job series. Any meaningful organization of core competencies needs to account for the variability of pay grades performing at the same level and with the same basic roles and responsibilities that are department/agency, region and even facility dependent.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1

The next significant area of comment centered on how departments and agencies deploy their personnel.

Reviewers admired the system’s three levels of increasing knowledge, skills and abilities as a “concept”, but did not believe it was implementable government-­‐wide. Departments and agencies deploy their personnel according to the scope and scale required by the facilities being operated and managed, and according to their own organizational idiosyncrasies. One agency may have a dedicated facility manager for a large stand-­‐ alone building, while another agency may have a number of individuals whose area of expertise is deployed across numerous facilities coming together in a “department” to accomplish all facilities operations and management tasks.


We developed a system that focused on the highest impact core competencies common to every agency -­‐ remaining job series and pay grade

agnostic. This system establishes (7) Core Competency Areas referenced in the law, along with (5) additional Core Competency Areas universally recognized for their impact on facilities operations and management. Further, we introduced an industry standard framework and nomenclature to better align core competencies with existing courses, certifications, degrees, licenses and registrations. It arranges the system into: Core Competency Areas, Core Competencies and Performances. We determined that most functions performed above the Facility/Cantonment Area level differed mainly in scope and scale rather than in content including: program management; policy development and implementation; performance measurement; providing subject matter expertise; budget formulation, advocacy and execution; and funding allocation. While important, these management and support functions are not the focus of the FBPTA and thus, are not the focus of our initial Program release.

The Program/system provides departments and agencies the maximum flexibility to implement the FBPTA according to how they are truly organized and deployed across their portfolios. Inherent to this level of flexibility, is the necessity for interaction between individuals and their supervisors at an operational level. Using the “performances”, individuals and their supervisors will need to determine what core competencies are vital to performing their roles within the organization. A web-­‐tool is being developed with OPM that allows individuals to enter, and choose from a menu of certifications, degrees, licenses and registrations which ones they currently hold. Qualifications will be mapped automatically to the core competencies that they demonstrate. This plus any courses the individual has completed, establishes their baseline. The difference between the individual’s baseline and the core competencies required by the individual will form a “GAP”. This GAP analysis will provide the individual and their supervisor the ability to create development plans and justify funding for training. Unfortunately, the extreme variability across department and agency systems makes it impossible to allow data to be “pushed” into the web-­‐tool.


The web-­‐tool and this process presents an incredible opportunity to create a one-­‐of-­‐a-­‐kind database that can be used to measure the

effectiveness of our training programs by mapping them to a series of building performance measures that we will be asking for when personnel establish their account, and at the six and twelve month time periods following completed training. We will include inquiry into whether the measures are impacted by any extreme conditions – record hot summer, record cold winter, moving into a 24hr operations posture etc. This

direct and observable correlation of training to building performance will be a powerful vehicle for both public and private facilities operations and management personnel as they make the case for training budgets or as evidence of the efficacy of their products.


This Program is designed to pursue and present state-­‐of-­‐the-­‐art knowledge and concepts per the law. As such, some of the terms and concepts may not be familiar to all personnel using this document. Where the potential for that exists, the term has been defined and a reference location given. In some cases, knowledge of a term or concept represents a “performance” under a core competency. To receive credit for this performance in the system, an individual will certify that they have reviewed the reference indicated – the honor system applies.

During the development of this Program, the question of how to deal with (On the-­‐Job-­‐Training = OJT) came up frequently. Our intention is to give credit where appropriate. However, the number of personnel that will be seeking OJT and the areas they will be seeking it in, could not be determined prior to the identification of the core competencies. Now that we have the core competencies, the web-­‐tool is being designed to capture OJT requests so that the volume an scope can be analyzed and a program developed to provide vehicles for these organization to ensure their personnel possess the competencies that they are claiming credit for.


The identification of the enclosed core competencies represents a significant amount of research and has been done in consultation with our industry, government and academic partners. This is a very complex system seeking to implement transformational concepts across the Federal government. We look forward to continuing our work with all the outstanding individuals and organizations that contributed to this effort.


Competency Area Core Competency Competency Area Core Competency
1. Facilities Operationsand Management o Building Systems o Building Interior o Building ExteriorOther Facility Systems 9. Project Management o Initiate o  Execute o Closeout o Training
2. Facilities Operations,Maintenance and


Operating and Maintaining HVAC SystemsOperating and Maintaining Electrical and

Mechanical Systems

o Operating, Maintaining and Testing Life Safety


o General Building Maintenance

Best Practices and Innovation

10. Business, Budget andContracting Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)Life-­‐Cycle Assessment (LCA)


Budget Formulation and Execution

3. Technology Technology SolutionsBuilding Automation Systems (BAS)

Maintenance Management System (MMS)

11. Leadership andInnovation Communication and AdministrationPersonnel


Enterprise Knowledge and Strategic

Decision Making

4. Energy Management Systems and Demand ReductionAssess Initial Conditions


Planning, Project and Program Management

Energy Savings Performance Contracts (ESPC)

o Coordinate with Public Utilities

12. Performance Measures FBPTAAcquiring Data

Establishment and implementation

5. Safety Basic RequirementsInfrastructure

Contract Management

Occupant Interface

6. Design PlanningInfrastructure Systems
7. Sustainability BackgroundRegulations and Requirements Implementation
8. Water Efficiency Regulations, Goals and Best PracticesWater Audit

Large FACILITY/Stand-­‐alone Facility(ies)/Cantonment Area(s)

Core Competency Area: 1. Facilities Operations and Management
Core Competency Performances:
Building Systems 1.   Demonstrate familiarity with Building Systems: HVAC, Electrical (and Standby generators), Lighting,Mechanical/Plumbing (and Fire protection systems), Vertical transportation, Structural, Roofing, Building


2.   Demonstrate ability to work with Facilities team to assess a facility’s need for building systems.

3.   Demonstrate ability to oversee the acquisition, installation, and operation of building systems.

4.   Demonstrate ability to work with Facilities Team to establish practices and procedures.

5.   Demonstrate ability to work with Facilities Team to determine and administer the allocation of building systems’ resources.

6.   Demonstrate ability to monitor and evaluate how well building systems perform.

7.   Demonstrate ability to manage corrective, preventive and predictive maintenance.

8.   Demonstrate ability to work with Facilities Team to develop emergency procedures for building systems.

9.   Demonstrate knowledge of how to implement disaster recovery plans for building systems as required.

Building Interior 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of how to evaluate building structures and permanent interiors.2.   Demonstrate ability to manage the service/repair requests and maintenance and cleaning needs of building structures and permanent interior elements.

3.   Demonstrate ability to evaluate furniture and equipment performance.

4.   Demonstrate ability to manage the maintenance and cleaning of furniture and equipment.

Building Exterior 1.   Demonstrate familiarity with managing grounds and exteriorso     Parking structures

o     Site utilities

o     Landscaping and grounds

o     Exterior envelope (roof, brick, masonry, etc.)

2.   Demonstrate ability to assess the effect of climate and extreme environmental conditions.

3.   Demonstrate ability to evaluate the performance of grounds and exterior elements.

4.   Demonstrate ability to assess the need for alterations in grounds and exterior elements.

5.   Demonstrate ability to manage the maintenance and custodial needs of grounds and exterior elements.

Other Facility Systems 1.   Demonstrate ability to manage vehicles and related equipment as required.
2.   Demonstrate ability to work with Security Personnel as required on:o     Personnel ingress/egress

o     Controlled access systems

o     Backup power requirements

o     Emergency Lighting

3.   Demonstrate ability to manage pest control and waste systems.

4.   Demonstrate ability to work with interior communications (phone, computer, video conferencing)

personnel to ensure facility requirements are met and service interruption procedures are in place.

Core Competency Area: 2. Facilities Operations, Maintenance and Engineering
Core Competency Performances:

Operating and

Maintaining HVAC Systems

1.   Demonstrate ability to collecting Operating Data on system.o     Read required: pressures, temperatures, control panels and other operating parameters as required. (Using gauges, meters and computer systems as necessary)

o     Check oil levels and other required levels

o     Log equipment reading and report any inconsistencies

2.   Demonstrate ability to adjust System Parameters as required.

3.   Demonstrate understanding of indoor air quality – how to test and adjust. (Air pollutant sources, biological contaminants, air sampling, CO2 measurement, mold, control strategies, system balancing, ventilation)

4.   Demonstrate ability to analyze HVAC system performance. (chillers, boilers, ventilation, pressure,

temperature, amperage, voltage, air flow, water flow)

o     Collect trends of operational parameters

o     Conduct performance tests and collect data

o     Compare trends and data

o     Report findings

5.   Demonstrate ability to coordinate HVAC system changes.

6.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to maintain all HVAC Systems (clean, change and perform preventative maintenance…)

7.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to repair all HVAC Systems (calibrate, change, fabricate, recover, replace and trouble shoot as required…)

o     Ability to perform advanced trouble shooting techniques using appropriate tools.

8.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to optimize HVAC controls. (ex calibrated energy savings, reduced

ventilation where possible, hot/cold water resets, economizer control, start/stop timers, demand load shedding)

Operating andMaintaining Electrical and

Mechanical Systems

1.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability with Lighting Systems – trouble shoot lighting systems, adjust lightingprogramming, replace lamps, replace ballasts, maintain lamps and ballast inventory,

2.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to change: electrical fuses, control boards, electrical fixtures, and electrical relays.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to replace electric motors.

4.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to maintain plumbing fixtures, sewage injectors, and water heaters.

5.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to identify irrigation leaks.

6.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to all drains and backflow preventers

7.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to maintain pressure-­‐reducing valves.

8.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to replace water filters.

9.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to winterize irrigation systems if necessary.

Operating, Maintaining

and Testing Life Safety


1.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to operate Fire Alarm panels and test the entire fire alarm system.2.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to test the emergency generators.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to test fire pumps and sprinkler systems.

4.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to test smoke and heat sensors.

5.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to inspect fire extinguishers.

General BuildingMaintenance 1.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to maintain door hardware.2.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to maintain roof systems.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to maintain ceiling tiles.

4.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to maintain flooring systems.

5.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to maintain window systems.

6.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to perform minor wall repairs.

Best Practices andInnovation 1.     Demonstrate knowledge of the “Ten Steps to Operational Efficiency” – FEMP O&M Best Practices Guide Rev3.0 pg 291. (

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of (DOE/PNNL) “Retuning Project” and how it could be applied – (Re-­‐tuning is intended to provide building operators, building managers and energy service providers with the necessary skills to identify no-­‐ and low-­‐cost operational problems that plague commercial buildings and provide the skills necessary to take corrective action.)

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of and the ability to perform “predictive maintenance” (Predictive maintenance attempts to detect the onset of a degradation mechanism with the goal of correcting that degradation prior

to significant deterioration in the component or equipment.) FEMP O&M Best Practices Release 3.0 pg 59(

4.   Demonstrate knowledge of ALL types of commissioning, and what is required in the Energy Independence and Security Act 2007 (EISA).

5.   Demonstrate knowledge of metering and sub-­‐metering for energy and water and how they contribute to systems optimization.

6.    Demonstrate knowledge of O&M Frontiers like those found in FEMP O&M Best Practices Guide Rev 3.0 pg 287.


7.   Demonstrate knowledge of advanced trouble-­‐shooting techniques on a systems-­‐wide basis.

Core Competency Area: 3. Technology
Core Competency Performances:
Technology Solutions 1.   Demonstrate ability to monitor information and trends related to facility management technologies.2.   Demonstrate ability to identify and interface with internal and external accountable resources, e.g., external vendors, internal or external IT systems owners.

3.   Demonstrate ability to identify evaluation criteria, evaluate, and recommend facility management

technologies solutions.

4.   Demonstrate ability to assess how changes to facility management technologies will impact current infrastructure, processes, and building systems.

5.   Demonstrate ability to plan for and oversee the acquisition, installation, operation, maintenance, upgrade, and disposition of components supporting facility management technologies.

6.   Demonstrate ability to recommend and communicate policies. Establish practices and procedures.

7.   Demonstrate ability to develop and implement training programs for facilities staff and ancillary resources.

8.   Demonstrate ability to monitor performance of facility management technologies and make appropriate recommendations when modifications are needed.

9.   Demonstrate ability to manage corrective, preventive, and predictive maintenance.

10. Demonstrate ability to develop, test and implement, when necessary, emergency procedures and disaster recovery plans.

Building AutomationSystems (BAS) 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of a Building Automation System (BAS) and Maintenance Management Systems(MMS)

o     How equipment is entered into BAS

o     Participate in the establishment of control strategies

o     Monitor and implement overrides when necessary, alarm procedures

o     Monitor, analyze and report trendso     How BAS and MMS inter-­‐relate for operations and accounting systems

2.   Demonstrate understanding of the bridge between the technical and business aspects of facilities


3.   Demonstrate ability to conduct trouble-­‐shooting procedures at the equipment, system and building levels.

4.   Demonstrate ability to conduct trouble-­‐shooting of critical systems: access control systems, fire alarm and suppression systems, elevator systems, emergency lighting systems, and emergency communication systems.


Management System


1.   Demonstrate knowledge of Maintenance Management Systems -­‐ Computer Assisted Facilities Management(CAFM) AND Computerized Maintenance Management Systems (CMMS)

2.   Demonstrate understanding of MMS AND CMMS:

o     Understand how to setup the program and input data on equipment and items to measure

o     Establish baselines with standards and priorities and backup requirements

o     Establish maintenance schedules

o     Setup reports, frequency, levels and user access

o     Establish inter-­‐operability with accounting system

o     Establish inventory thresholds/levels and determine maintenance tasks

o     Determine user roles (access levels) and identify system administrators

o     Establish close-­‐out procedures

o     Process departmental charge-­‐backs

o     Determine costs/pricing structure (labor, materials, overhead, etc.)

o     Ensure system maintenance back up data and develop data archiving strategy

o     Train users, setup dashboard and identify in-­‐house skills inventory

Core Competency Area: 4. Energy Management
Core Competency Performances:
Systems and DemandReduction 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of building systems and how they affect energy use:o     HVAC System

o     Electrical Systems

o     Motors and drives

o     Lighting Systems

o     Building Envelope

o     Fuel Systems -­‐ Fuel Selection

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of Combined Heat and Power (CHP) Systems and distributed generation.3.   Demonstrate knowledge of Renewable Energy Systems – Solar (Thermal and Photovoltaic), Wind, Biomass, Hydropower.

4.   Demonstrate knowledge of Thermal Energy Storage systems – (ex. chilled water storage, ice storage, potential energy storage etc)

5.   Demonstrate knowledge of Building Automation Systems (BAS) and Control Systems.

6.   Demonstrate knowledge of Enhanced Automation (EA) – “the variety of potential strategies to increase the capability of the existing energy or building management systems to control current, and plan for future, building energy costs while maintaining the comfort and productivity of all building occupants.”

7.   Demonstrate knowledge of Energy Management Systems (EMS) and Energy Information Systems (EIS).

8.   Demonstrate knowledge of re-­‐programming current systems and expanding network of sensors and control devices to optimize HVAC, lighting and other automated systems.

9.   Demonstrate knowledge of how to incorporate occupancy sensors, task lighting, thermostatic set-­‐points with weather forecasting and other demand linked strategies to optimize building performance.

Assess Initial Conditions 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of how to perform and Energy Savings Assessment: Example

o     Role of Energy Audits

o     Energy Audit – Types I, II, III

o     Utility Bill Analysis

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of laws, regulations and Executive Orders that pertain to energy management,

status of compliance and existing energy management plans. See FEMP website of list of laws and regulations:

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of applicable Codes and Standards – (ex. ISO 50001, ASHRAE/IESNA Std 90.1-­‐2010, ASHRAE 62.1-­‐2010, Model Energy Code, ASHRAE Standard 135-­‐2008, ASHRAE Std 189.1-­‐2009 etc)

Commissioning and

Energy Savings Performance Contracts (ESPC)

1.   Demonstrate knowledge of all types of Commissioning: initial commissioning, retro-­‐commissioning, re-­‐commissioning, Continuous (on-­‐going) Commissioning – the differences, and commissioning requirements in laws and executive orders.

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of commissioning requirements for: measurement and verification, phasing and commission agent duties.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of the Energy Savings Performance Contracting (ESPC) procedures and


o     Measurement and verificationo     Energy Savings Companies (ESCO)

o     Regulations pertaining to ESPCs

o     Utility Financing

o     Demand side managemento     Savings determination

o     Risk Assessment

o     Loans, Stocks and Bonds

4.   Demonstrate knowledge of Shared Savings Contracts, Power Purchase Agreements (PPA), Utility EnergyService Contracts (UESC) and Enhanced Use Leases (EUL).

Coordinate with Public


1.   Demonstrate knowledge of utility service providers for facility (ies).2.   Demonstrate knowledge of utility meters – location, reading and data management.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of utility billing and rate structure.

4.   Demonstrate knowledge of local utility programs – special rate programs and incentives.

5.   Demonstrate the ability to work with Facilities team to negotiate rates and discounts.

6.   Demonstrate knowledge of how to work with utility departments to locate lines.

7.   Demonstrate knowledge of utility emergency procedures and contacts.

Planning, Project and

Program Management

1.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to develop an Energy master plan.2.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to develop a metering Program.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to develop energy account database.

4.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to provide planning support for energy budget.

5.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to identify and develop low-­‐cost and no-­‐cost energy efficiency opportunities.

6.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to provide operational support to energy management control systems.

7.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to develop/assist in project identification and justification.

8.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to develop UESC and ESPC projects.

9.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to monitor facility energy projects.

10. Demonstrate knowledge and ability to provide peak load management.

11. Demonstrate knowledge and ability to manage an energy awareness program and establish/support an

awards program recognizing energy efficiency efforts.

12. Demonstrate knowledge and ability to develop and distribute energy articles, newsletters, notices, posters and signs.

13. Demonstrate knowledge and ability to coordinate Energy Awareness Week/Month.

14. Demonstrate the ability to calculate and respond appropriately to established energy metrics such as Power

Utilization Efficiency (PUE).

o     Where and how to take measurements

o     How to interpret the datao     How to explain the results to people in operations and upper management

o     How to develop an improvement strategy

15. Demonstrate the ability to recommend and/or acquire certifications for specific skills

Core Competency Area: 5. Safety
Core Competency Performances:
Basic Requirements 1.   Complete Department/Agency required Safety training that meets or exceeds the requirements of OSHA,General Industry and/or Construction 10 and 30 hr programs.

2.   Complete Electrical Safety course and be familiar with electrical codes and regulations and best practices.

Infrastructure 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of control systems for: mold, asbestos, Histoplasmosis, PCB in transformers.2.   Demonstrate knowledge of proper water treatment to prevent Legionnaire’s Disease.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of ventilation systems and prevention of contaminant introduction and cross contamination.

4.   Demonstrate knowledge of fire prevention systems in hazardous locations/operations; food preparation areas; electrical transformers.

5.   Demonstrate the ability to manage compliance with NFPA 70E -­‐2012 for determining incident energy and marking the electrical components for the hazard distance and proper arc rated protective equipment

6.   Demonstrate knowledge of control of electric vehicle battery fires, internal use, occupant use and visitor vehicles.

7.   Demonstrate the ability to ensure that all building confined spaces are evaluated and marked.

8.   Demonstrate the ability to ensure proper maintenance of special purpose, unique design or antiquated fire alarm and suppression systems.

9.   Demonstrate the ability to manage Compliance with elevator inspection requirements.

Contract Management 1.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to protect occupants with signs, barriers, and fencing and allow NOrenovation of occupied space.

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of permit system for hot welding work and for confined space work.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of fall protection of people and tools/materials for contractor and occupants.

4.   Demonstrate knowledge of proper disposal of hazardous, toxic and biologic materials.

5.   Demonstrate knowledge of protection of electrical hazards to employees and to building infrastructure; arc rated clothing, lock out/tag out program.

6.   Demonstrate knowledge of compliant protective equipment for contract and sub contract workers

7.   Demonstrate knowledge of adequate fall protection working from ladders/heights8.   Demonstrate knowledge of, and ability to manage compliance with OSHA 1910 and 1926 standards and

Army Corps of Engineers construction safety manual EM 385-­‐1-­‐1.

Occupant Interface 1.   Demonstrate ability to ensure tenant renovations have adequate design, does not interfere with othertenants, local code compliance, high quality of work

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to manage proper storage of hazardous, toxic and biologic materials

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to manage proper disposal of hazardous (such as kitchen grease) and biologic materials (medical or research)

4.   Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to manage prohibition of fire hazards.

5.   Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to manage adequate ventilation of work spaces, adequate exhaust and makeup air, no short circuit designs

6.   Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to manage adequate cleanliness of indoor firing ranges-­‐ventilation,

cleanup of lead dust.

7.   Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to manage adequate electric vehicle battery charging stations to prevent fires (as required).

8.   Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to manage prohibition of non UL-­‐rate unsafe electrical equipment.

9.   Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to manage the documentation of occupant safety and health complaints and their resolution.

10. Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to manage/conduct:

o     Creation of fire and life safety plans

o     Fire, HAZMAT and life safety drills

o     Creation and posting of evacuation routes

o     Creation of a personnel accountability system

o     Inspection of all components of the fire and life safety systems – (ex. exit lights, fire extinguishers, fire

suppression systems, incident announcement systems etc)

Core Competency Area: 6. Design
Core Competency Performances:
Planning 1.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability of conduct an assessment of “needs” that will evaluate whether currentfacilities can respond to a new requirement or whether a “project” must be developed to respond to the new requirement.

2.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to utilize Agency/Department planning tools (ex DD form 1391 or

Prospectus) and funding thresholds to define project requirements, propose project site, estimate project

costs, justify need, and develop scope.3.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to perform due diligence analysis regarding:

o     Best site selection according to transportation connectivity

o     Interrelationships between physical, climatic, environmental, economic, political, sustainability, historic

preservation, archeological and social elements

o     Interrelationships between Federal, State and local policies – codes, laws and regulations

o     Long-­‐range vice short-­‐range development plans

4.   Demonstrate understanding of the concept of “Deep Energy Retrofits (DER)” and how and when to initiate.

WorkingConceptDefinition: An integrated team, Implementing a deep energy retrofit should piggyback efficiency improvements on already planned capital improvements and breaks in occupancy, take advantage of advanced energy modeling and life cycle cost analysis methods to identify situations in building’s life cycle that trigger DER design and analysis, verify savings and continuously improve energy performance.

5.   Demonstrate knowledge of certification systems used by the Federal government and industry (ex.

Leadership Energy Environmental Design –LEED, Green Globes etc)

6.   Demonstrate knowledge of the Sustainable Facilities Tool –

7.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to use Geographic Information System (GIS) and other Dept/Agency software programs in preparation of all required documents.

Infrastructure Systems 1.   Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of Architectural and Engineering Systems:o     Roofing Systems

o     Building Envelope Systems

o     Window Systems

o     HVAC Systems

o     Electrical Systems

o     Telecommunication Systems

o     All Lighting Systems

o     Fire Protection Systems

o     BAS

o     IT Systems – installation arrangement and energy requirements

o     Interior Design

o     Landscape Architectural Systems

o     Plumbing Systems

o     Occupant needs and requirements/controls

o     Resource flows – energy, water and waste
Core Competency Area: 7. Sustainability
Core Competency Performances:
Background The term Sustainability applies within the definition of High Performance Buildings from EISA 07.“A building that integrates and optimizes on a lifecycle basis all major high performance attributes, including

energy [and water] conservation, environment, safety, security, durability, accessibility, cost-­‐benefit, productivity, sustainability, functionality, and operational considerations” (Energy Independence and Security Act 2007 401 PL 110-­‐140).

Within this definition, Sustainability is recognized to mean “development that meets the needs of the present, without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” -­‐ from the Brundtland Report, Our Common Future (1987). Experts within the Facilities Management industry have used the triple bottom line

-­‐ balancing environmental, economic and social goals (Hodges 2009; Lewis et al 2009) to take the philosophical definition and make it practical.

The nature of “Sustainability” is interdisciplinary and will contain elements from environmental, operations, maintenance, contracting and management etc.

Regulations andRequirements 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of the Guiding Principles for Federal High Performance and Sustainable Buildings. and Federal Mandates

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of Dept/Agency Strategic Sustainability Performance Plan (SSPP).

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of Dept/Agency Resiliency and Adaptation Plan.

Implementation 1.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to develop and/or coordinate:o     A recycling program

o     A HAZMAT reduction program

o     A green purchasing program

o     Alternative transportation and workplace strategies

o     Sustainability audit and inspection programs

o     Universal Waste Audit

o     Water Audit

o     Energy Audit

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of how the above comes together in the “Sustainability Section” of the FacilityMaster Plan.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of the Sustainable Facilities Tool –

4.   Demonstrate ability to work with subject matter experts to calculate the “qualitative impacts” of sustainability program.

o     Waste reduction

o     Greenhouse Gas reduction

o     Operational impacts

o     Community impacts

5.   Demonstrate knowledge of implementing a “recognition program” for sustainability efforts.

Core Competency Area: 8. Water Efficiency
Core Competency Performances:
Regulations, Goals andBest Practices 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of water efficiency principles that are applicable in both the public and privatearena.

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of Federal water policy and goals found in Laws and Executive Orders:

o     Executive Order 13123, Guidance to Federal Agencies for Determining Baseline Water Usage


o     Executive Order 13123, Guidance to Establish Water Efficiency Improvement Goal for Federal Agencies


o     EO 13423, 13514, Energy Policy Act 2005 and Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA 07).

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of Water Efficiency Goal Guidance for the Federal Government.


4.   Demonstrate knowledge of current Dept/Agency water guidance – Uniform Facilities Code (UFC), Department or agency guidebooks.

5.   Demonstrate knowledge of how the following affect water use and efficiency and ability to make recommendations based on lifecycle analysis and best practices to facilities team:

o     Distribution System Audits, leak detection and repair

o     Water-­‐efficient landscaping with focus on Xeriscaping -­‐ Defn: landscaping method that employs

drought-­‐resistant plants in an effort to conserve resources, especially water)

o     Toilets and Urinals

o     Showerhead and Faucets

o     Boilers and Steam Systems

o     Single-­‐pass Cooling Equipment

o     Cooling Tower Managemento     Any miscellaneous high water-­‐using processes

o     Water Reuse and Recycling

Water Audit

1.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to conduct both a Top-­‐down and Bottom-­‐up water audit:

o     Top-­‐down:

•    Focus on the total system to set priorities

•    Comprehensive scope

•    Goals, objectives, procedures are then pushed down to the individual parts

o     Bottom-­‐up:

•    Focus on the specifics of each end-­‐use

•    Sum the parts to define the whole

•    Goals, objectives, procedures are developed at the lower levels and pushed upward

Core Competency Area: 9. Project Management
Core Competency Performances:


1.   Demonstrate ability to work in integrated project teams (Facility Managers, Building Operating Engineers,Planners, Contracting Officers, Contractors, Occupants etc) to execute, small, medium and large projects.

2.   Demonstrate ability to:

o    Follow Project Management processes and procedures per your organization’s preferred methodology

(ex. ISO 9000, PMI, WBS, in-­‐house system etc)

o    Conduct needs assessment and define project requirements o    Estimate costs and develop Project Plan and Project timeline o    Develop project communications plan

o    Obtain any required project permits

o    Develop project accounting procedures

o    Ensure regulator compliance

3.   If Project will be completed by contractors, demonstrate the ability to:

o    Develop Scope Of Work (SOW) and the Request For Proposal (RFP)

o    Work with procurement team to select contractor

o    Review Contractor Plans

o    Work with Contracting Officer on all contract administration requirements


1.   Demonstrate ability to:
o     Ensure facility services are maintained during project executiono     Assign project resources

o     Inspect project work

o     Manage impacts of project on existing facility

o     Conduct project meetings

o     Report project progress

o     Monitor project costs

o     Monitor project schedules

2.   If Project will be completed by contractors, demonstrate the ability to:

o     Produce project change orders

o     Attend site reviews

o     If Contracting Officer Representative -­‐ approve project payments/draws

o     Resolve project issues

o     Obtain maintenance contracts

o     Secure project warranties

o     Arrange staff training for new equipment

o     Develop spare parts lists

Closeout 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to:o     Obtain project as-­‐builts

o     Perform project close-­‐outs

o     Create and complete project punch-­‐lists

o     Obtain certificate of occupancy

o     Accept beneficial use

o     Commission the project

o     Review lessons learned

o     Work with contracting personnel to:

•    Obtain lien waivers/release of liens if required

•    Issue final payment

•    Create budget variance report


1.   Demonstrate knowledge of PM software and scheduling software, where to find technical resources on PM.

o     Demonstrate ability to train those junior to you in these PM aspects and on these tools

o     Demonstrate ability to develop and implement a project Quality Assessment (QA) Program to ensure

Initial Costs – Acquisition, Construction etc Residual Values – Resale values, Disposal costs
Fuel Costs Other Costs -­‐ Finance Charges(interest payments) etc
O&M and Repair costs Non-­‐Monetary Benefits or Costs
Replacement Costs
Net Savings (or Net Benefits) Savings to Investment Ratio (SIR) or Benefit-­‐Cost Ratio
Internal Rate of Return (IRR) Payback Period
that projects are completed as designed with the specified materials by qualified personnel.
Core Competency Area: 10. Business, Budget and Contracting
Core Competency Performances:

Total Cost of Ownership


1.   Demonstrate knowledge of the mission of the Facilities’ Occupants and how the facilities enhance thatmission.

2.   Demonstrate knowledge that the TCO is best determined through Life-­‐Cycle Cost Analysis (LCCA) for


3.   Demonstrate knowledge of how to find/calculate the basic costs required for an LCCA:

4.   Demonstrate knowledge of additional methods for calculating TCO and other economic analysis can be used if they use the same parameters and time period.

5.   Demonstrate knowledge of available LCCA software.

o     Building Life-­‐Cycle Cost (BLCC) Program -­‐ FEMP

o     ECONPAK – Army Corps of Engineers

o     Energy 10 – has a cost estimating feature

o     SuccessEstimator – from U.S. Cost

Life-­‐Cycle Assessment


1.   Demonstrate knowledge of the difference between a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and an LCCA.2.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to use a LCA to estimate the environmental impacts of a material, product or service through its entire life cycle.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of ISO 14040.

4.   Demonstrate knowledge of an ability to use LCA Software:

o     Building for Environmental and Economic Sustainability (BEES)

o     ATHENA Environmental Impact Estimator

Contracting 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of Contracting Officer Representative (COR) duties, responsibilities, training,certification and maintenance of certification.

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of rules and requirements for purchasing products and services.

3.   Demonstrate ability to assess technical requirements needed to ensure delivery and quality of services/products.

4.   Demonstrate ability to create an effective Statement Of Work (SOW) for COR or Contracting Officer to ensure proper procurement of a product or service.

5.   Demonstrate knowledge of and ability to effectively govern/oversee a contract to ensure compliance and full value of the service or product being provided.

o    Quality Assurance Audits and Indicators o    Required Measurement and Verification o    Performance Audits and Surveys

o    Customer Satisfaction Surveys

o    Compliance with Federal, State and Local regulations

o    Compliance with all Safety laws and requirements

o    Benchmarking Progress

Budget Formulation andExecution 1.   Demonstrate ability to develop and manage a project/program budget.2.   Demonstrate knowledge of budget submission requirements.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of historical budget records and costs and how to use in forecasting.

4.   Demonstrate ability to quantify potential for cost savings and cost avoidance.

5.   Demonstrate ability to use LCCA in budget preparation.

6.   Demonstrate ability to identify quantitative and qualitative risks.

7.   Demonstrate ability to advocate for funding using economic analysis.

8.   Demonstrate ability to prioritize projects/programs based on funding levels.

9.   Demonstrate ability to manage operating budget and produce required financial reports.

10. Demonstrate knowledge of invoice/expenditure approval processes.

11. Demonstrate ability to recommend/conduct funding reallocation based on changing priorities.

12. Demonstrate ability to conduct periodic financial reviews and produce required reports.

Core Competency Area: 11. Leadership and Innovation
Core Competency Performances:
Communication andAdministration 1.   Demonstrate ability to:o     Write clear, concise, and well organized documents
o     Speak in a clear, concise, and well organized manner (public and interpersonal)o     Listen effectively and communicate understanding

o     Give direction

o     Actively clarify interpretations and confirm understanding

o     Make oral presentations

o     Present information visually

o     Use communication technologies

o     Conduct effective meetings

o     Comprehend written and graphic information

o     Comprehend financial and technical information

o     Negotiate for services, resources, information and commitments

o     Establish personal and professional networks

2.   Demonstrate ability to supervise personnel as required:

o     Plan staffing needs and requirements

o     Hire, contract, reassign, retrain, right-­‐size

o     Coordinate personnel assignments

o     Coordinate work performed as contracted services

o     Evaluate performance

o     Support personnel development

o     Provide leadership

3.   Demonstrate ability to perform administrative duties:

o     Administer policies, procedures and practices

o     Administer the acquisition, distribution and use of material resources

o     Maintain documentation systems


1.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to:

o     Evaluate and manage the facility’s support of organizational goals and objectives.

o     Monitor changes in laws and regulations.

o     Assure the facility and its operation complies with laws and regulations

o     Monitor and assure changes in the facility function and services

o     Monitor information and trends about human and environmental concerns

o     Ensure training is conducted to maintain safe and effective use of the facility

o     Conduct due diligence studies

2.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to:o     Develop or participate in the development of emergency plans

o     Assure people are trained in emergency procedures

o     Assure all emergency systems and procedures are tested as planned

o     Assure emergency drills and conducted

o     Develop or participate in the development of recovery plans

Innovation 1.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to investigate ways to improve facility services.2.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to assess risks and opportunities.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to conduct pilot tests when developing new procedures.

4.   Demonstrate knowledge of the on-­‐line National Science Foundation library of Federal Facilities related publications – (ex Core Competencies for Federal Facilities Asset Managers Through 2020, Predicting Outcomes of Investment in Maintenance and Repair of Federal Facilities)

5.   Demonstrate knowledge of Federal government “Knowledge Hubs” – (Whole Building Design Guide, Fed

Center) and

6.   Demonstrate knowledge of the offices, programs and National Labs at DOE that drive innovation in Facilities operation and management. [ex Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP), Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (LBNL)]

7.   Demonstrate knowledge of GSA’s Green Proving Ground Program -­‐

8.   Demonstrate knowledge of the training and certifications provided by Industry Associations and

Professional Societies in Facilities Operations and Management, Energy Management, Sustainability, Project

Management etc.

9.   Demonstrate knowledge of University Facilities Management degrees and certifications.

10. Demonstrate ability to translate innovative ideas into actionable tasks:

o     Work with occupants, and facilities’ team to analyze and ensure alignment of Facilities with the mission of Dept/Agency on a macro level and the specific occupant’s deliverables on a micro level

o     Work with occupants, and facilities’ team to integrate people, places, processes and technologies throughout all interconnected organizations

o     Using knowledge gained from the above sources and ingenuity born from day-­‐to-­‐day in the field operations, find ways to innovate across traditional macro and micro organizational boundaries

Enterprise Knowledge andStrategic Decision Making 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of “continuous retuning” and the potential savings represented by a government-­‐wide shift to this operating mode (ex A 10-­‐30% reduction in electricity use across Federal facilities represents a savings of between $700,000 million and $2.1Billion annual – in 2009 dollars)

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of the National Security role that Federal Facilities play – housing Fed

Dept/Agencies for operations, training, disaster response and energy/resource use.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to drive a “Change Management” process -­‐ a structured approach to shifting/transitioning individuals, teams, and organizations from a current state to a desired future state.

4.   Demonstrate knowledge and ability to move from the Operational (the who and when of things getting done) to Tactical (what we do) to the Strategic (why we do what we do).

5.   Demonstrate ability to strategically allocate all forms of “capital” – human(people), physical(facilities), economic(money) and environmental(land and resources).

6.   Demonstrate ability to provide decision makers with better information about the total long-­‐term costs and consequences of a particular course of action.

7.   Demonstrate ability to participate in the organization’s strategic planning at the executive level in order to translate between the organization’s missions and its facilities portfolio and clearly communicate how real estate and facilities can support these missions.

Core Competency Area: 12. Performance Measures
Core Competency Performances:
Federal BuildingsPersonnel Training Act 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of the requirements under the Federal Buildings Personnel Training Act 2010.2.   Demonstrate knowledge of how to use to view core competencies, methods to demonstrate them, curriculum and to report compliance with the law.
Acquiring Data 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of the differences between quantitative and qualitative data and how togather/calculate each.

2.   Demonstrate knowledge of key building performance measures, where and how to read them, and reporting requirements.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of what data is necessary to enable “continuous retuning.”

4.   Demonstrate ability to determine what records provide the “best fit” data for strategic decision making –

situation and desired outcome dependent.

Establishment andImplementation 1.   Demonstrate knowledge of Performance Measurement concepts (ex. SMART – Specific, Measureable,Actionable, Time-­‐bound)

2.   Demonstrate ability to use measures to inform decision-­‐making and resource allocation.

3.   Demonstrate knowledge of cascading Key Performance Indicators (KPI) that can be used to measure how well mission, management, program and individual goals are being met.

4.   Demonstrate ability to establish baselines from which progress toward attainment of goals can be measured.

5.   Demonstrate ability to establish feedback systems to support continuous improvement of an organization’s processes, practices, and results (outcomes).

6.   Demonstrate knowledge of how to combine single building metrics into a system to measure the performance of buildings portfolio in support of the organization’s overall mission.

7.   Demonstrate understanding that investments in training, and in facilities in general, are not often immediately visible or measurable, but that they are manifest over a period of years.

8.   Demonstrate ability to perform a sensitivity analysis on proposed measures to determine the how much

affect various controllable and uncontrollable drivers are:

o     Funding, weather, retirements, individual performance, training etc

9.   Demonstrate knowledge of current portfolio-­‐level performance indicators like the following:

o     Facilities Condition Index or Asset Utilization Index (measures portfolio against mission)

o     Current Replacement Value (total amount of money invested in portfolio)

o     Plant Replacement Value (cost to replace facilities assets in today’s dollars and using today’s methods)

o     Sustainment Rate (adequacy of funding maintenance and repair)

10. Demonstrate ability to understand a base set of key performance indicators for measuring the outcomes of

investments and the data to be provided for:

o     Total number and size of facilities

o     Facility types, age and location

o     Plant Replacement Value (PRV)

o     Facilities Condition Index (FCI)/Installation Readiness Report

o     Deferred Maintenance/Facilities Revitalization Rate

o     Asset Utilization Index

o     Recapitalization Rate

11. Demonstrate ability to understand, provide input for, and use additional (KPI) developed by organization to

measure the qualitative aspects of facilities operations and management:

o     Cost effectiveness

o     Customer satisfaction

o     Process efficiencies

BIM Collaboration – Fact or Fiction?

BIM Collaboration – Fact or Fiction

As members of the AECOO1 Community and stewards of the build environment, it is our obligation to collaboratively address our industry-specific productivity and business process issues as well as the our lack of significant progress relative to addressing environmental impacts.

Truth be told, there is only one significant barrier to efficient AECOO practices and it is our existing culture of mistrust, lack of open communication, and reliance upon antagonistic construction delivery methods.

The design-bid-build construction delivery method and associated practices such of awarding contracts to the lowest bidder do little more than a fuel to the fires of waste, protracted project timelines, change orders, and legal disputes.

Also, focus upon symptoms such as lack of effective technology usage and associated interoperability issues, have done little to drive change.  That said, it may be technology that is the acts as the catalyst to tear down the walls of mistrust and silos of independent groups and activities.

Cloud computing and associated social networking have already begun to dramatically alter the world and stand ready to forcefully impact the AECOO community.

A simplified, however, powerful definition of BIM is “the efficient life-cycle management of the built environment supported by digital technology”.   Achievement of this goal requires the integration of multiple knowledge domains and associated processes, procedures, and activities, which to date have been managed in isolation.   While detailed knowledge of each domain will remain a challenge, sharing of critical information with multi-disciplinary impact can be achieved if communication barriers are removed.   Cloud computing, social networking, and the associated use of integrated project delivery methods2 will provide the basic foundation upon with BIM will be enabled.  An an actionable framework for professional AECOO collaboration, and increased productivity is on the horizon.   The timing and success, however, is totally dependent upon transformational changes regarding the ways in which AECOO professionals communicate and deliver their services.


1-Architerture, Engineering, Construction, Owners, Operations

2-Current examples include integrated project delivery (IPD) for new construction and job order contracting (JOC).  The latter is a form of IPD specifically targeting renovation, repair, sustainability, and minor new construction.




via 4Clicks Solutions, LLC – Premier software for cost estimating and efficient project delivery – Job Order Contracting – JOC, SABER, IDIQ, SATOC, MATOC, MACC, POCA, BOA, IPD …. and best implementation of RSMeans Construction Cost Data, including enhanced 400,000+ line items with detailed descriptions and modifiers.

BIM and The Role of a Construction Cost Estimator

Professional construction cost estimators are critical to any collaborative, transparent, and productive  BIM solution.   BIM, facilities life-cycle management supported by digital technology will create a high demand cost estimators with a thorough understanding of building systems and associated repair, renovation, sustainability and construction techniques, materials, equipment, and labor.   Experienced cost estimators who appropriately leverage technology and embrace collaboration will excel.  Navigating the current AEC sector-wide paradigm shift from antagonistic ad-hoc processes such as design-bid-build, excessive change-orders, and even modest attempts at improvement such as design-build, to collaborative, efficient project delivery methods such as integrated project delivery – IPD, and job order contracting – JOC will be a challenge for some, but a willing change for most.

A team approach, support by technologies such as domain-specific cloud-computing solutions (cost estimating, capital planning, maintenance/repair, …)  integrated with 3D visualization tools..aka Revit will become commonplace.  Owners, AEs, Contractors, Sub-Contractors, Oversight Groups, Business Product Manufacturers- BPMs, and the Community will all gain higher visibility into life-cycle needs and impacts of the built environment.

All who collaborate openly to exceed client’s expectations, and produce efficient, quality construction, renovation, repair, and sustainability on-time, and on-budget will thrive, while non-participants will fall by the wayside.

The AECOO’s (architecture, engineering, construction, owner, operations) legacy of fragmented, unproductive approaches,  ad hoc practices, and associated lack of trust will crumble, to be replaced by OPEN, transparent, and collaborative PROCESSES supported by robust technology.


BIM Construction Cost Estimating – Top Ten List

First and foremost BIM is the life-cycle management of the built environment supported by digital technology.  While the industry is currently fixated upon 3D visualization tools, aka Revit, Archicad, Bentely… they only represent components of a BIM solution.

Construction cost estimating, and facility life-cycle cost estimating are critical components of any facility design, project delivery, repair, renovation, sustainability, or planning function.

Here’s a list of BIM Construction Cost Estimating Requirements:

1.  Collaboration – involvement of all stakeholders – Owners, AE’s, Contractors, Oversight Groups, Community …

2. Transparency – Appropriate access to cost information, and associated comparison to published independent third-party costs such as RSMeans Cost Data.

3. Consistent Format and Terminology – Use of a standard set of terms and data architectures such as Uniformat, Masterformat, Omniclass.

4. Metrics and Benchmarks – Time, Accuracy, Cost

5. Proper allowances for local conditions – geographic, weather, productivity of labor, …

6. Appropriate level of technology to assure productivity, collaboration, security, audit trail.

7. Robust Process – The application of a robust process and business “best-practices” with a focus upon continuous improvement.

8. Appropriate knowledge of all “levels” of construction cost estimating and their potential accuracy – Square Foot / Conceptual / Building Level Construction Cost Estimating, Assembly / System Level Construction Cost Estimating, Unit Line Item Construction Cost Estimating.

9. Knowledge of the impact of the Construction Cost Delivery Method upon construction costs and life-cycle costs – Design-Bid-Build, CM@Risk, Design-Build, Job Order Contracting, Integrated Project Delivery

10. Fundamental understanding of Total Cost of Ownership and Facility Life-cycle Management – Physical and functional conditions, Operations, Sustainability, Renovation, Repair, Efficient Project Delivery Methods ( IPD-Integrated Project Delivey, JOC – Job Order Contracting )


What is the Green Building Certification System?    What is Federal government’s role in using sound science and peer-reviewed studies to evaluate and implement advanced building technologies?

Congress has set statutory goals for improvements in performance – from reducing energy and water intensity across the Federal government’s real property inventory  relative pursuing net-zero energy buildings…. but is any project truly being made?

Executive Orders in two successive Administrations also have been issued to accomplish sustainability targets, but is anything truly being done in a productive manner?

The GSA is chartered to lead high performance building efforts including Congressionally-mandated review of green building certification systems.

As the GSA’s success is measured in how well it aids other agencies in their effectiveness, it must address all core aspects of sustainability initiatives including: efficient project delivery methods (integrated project delivery – IPD and job order contracting – JOC), capital planning and management,  and the disposal of Federal assets.

Congress created the  Office of Federal High Performance Green Buildings – OFHPGB (Chartered in December 2007 under Section 436 of the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) ) to enable and enhance Federal leadership in the field of large scale sustainable real property portfolio policy, management and operations.

Goals established in 2007 include:

Energy managers to complete annual comprehensive energy and water evaluations for approximately 25 percent of covered facilities, with each facility evaluated at least once every 4 years;

30 percent of hot water demand in new Federal buildings and major renovations be met with solar hot water equipment provided it is life-cycle cost effective;

Agencies use energy-efficient lighting fixtures and bulbs in Federal buildings;

Sustainable design principles to be applied to new Federal buildings and major renovations of Federal buildings;

Aggressive fossil fuel-generated energy reductions for new Federal buildings and major renovations of Federal buildings, phased-in through 2030, and

Agencies reduce total energy consumption per gross square foot in their new and existing Federal buildings by 30 percent from a FY2003 baseline by FY2015.

In 2009, the President signed Executive Order 13514 – Federal Leadership in Environmental, Energy, and Economic Performance which added the following:

Reduce potable water intensity by 26 percent in FY2020 compared to FY2007;

Reduce industrial, landscaping, and agricultural water use 2 percent annually, leading to a 20 percent reduction by FY2020 compared to FY2010;

Ensure all new Federal buildings entering the design phase in 2020 or later be designed to achieve net zero energy by 2030, and

Have at least 15 percent of existing buildings and leases meet the Guiding Principles for Federal Leadership in High Performance and Sustainable Buildings by 2015 with continued progress towards 100 percent.

To this date one might argue that little has been done.  For example the GSA and most, if not all other Federal Government non-DOD Departement and Agencies don’t even have a standardized job order contracting (JOC) program to enable efficient implementation of sustainability projects.

The DOD however, especially the Air Force has full documented and working JOC programs (called SABER in the Air Force), and the Army has made some progress as well.

Thus in summary, the GSA is still in the mode of “Putting the tools together”, to allow the Federal government to make strides in achieving the aggressive performance goals set by Congress and pursued by the Administration.

The question however is, do we have the time to wait?



3D BIM – An Unfortunate Distraction?

The value of BIM lies in the support of efficient life-cycle facility management processes supported by common terms and digital technology. The 3D visualization aspect of BIM is little more than an unfortunate distraction.

When will BIM become mainstream?  How do you truly prepare for BIM?  How do we educate people for BIM?  The most important requirement for  BIM to succeed is fundamental change in how we view life-cycle facility management and also altered business practices within the Architecture, Engineering, Construction, and Operations sector.

The 3D visualization aspect of BIM,  while a valuable component, is little more that a distraction.  Worse yet
“Visual GIGO” (garbage in/garbage out), a term I picked up in a recent BIM conversation, is delaying our ability to better address sustainability and economic issues.  BIM requires a change in the basic foundation of how Owners, AEs, Contractors, Subs, Oversight Groups, Building Product Manufactures, Community, etc. interact relative to construction project delivery. Integrated Project Delivery – IPD and Job Order Contracting – JOC are important to BIM as are other knowledge domains and/or practice areas.

The key to BIM is lies in process and people.  Until the focus of BIM is upon integrating people upfront in all relevant aspects of building life-cycle management and clearly defining terms, roles, responsibilities, within a collaborative, transparent process… BIM will continue to fail.  Cloud computing will play a central role in driving change, whether you are a participant or standing on the sidelines (see this link for how technology/media impacts culture )

via – Premier Software for Efficient Project Delivery – JOC, SABER, IPD, SATOC, MATOC, MACC, POCA, IDIQ, BOA …

RSMeans Strategic Business Partner – Exclusively enhanced 400,000 line item cost data base.

Demand For Efficient Life-Cycle Building Management Processes – BIM, JOC, IPD – FIATECH PRESENTATION – 2012

Critical components of CONSTRUCTION PROJECT success include communication, collaboration, a defined mutually agreed upon operating relationship and an associated fully defined project scope of work…   all of which are largely determined by the construction delivery method.

A thorough understanding and visualization of a project among Owners,  Architects and Engineers,  Contractors, and other shareholders defines scope, specifications, and is is the  project delivery method that set the overall tone of interrelations ships among the project participants and shapes final outcomes.  Field specific variables, such as weather, on-going operations, soils conditions, security, safety, site lay-out, environment protections and other contexts must be considered as well as the means and methods of work execution. These and other variables impact the overall cost, timing, and ultimate success of the project.

Collaboration among all shareholders on the front end, and then throughout the project is the means by which multiple knowledge domains associated with a construction project are brought together to  allow for  visualizing the building the project prior to construction.  For example, estimating a job requires knowledge about about the impact that AE, context, and execution scope have on each unit, assembly, and system level cost.

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Construction management is a process!  Several exiting as well as newer, disruptive technologies are now enabling the cost-effective development, implementation, and monitoring of collaborative efficient construction management processes in lieu or traditional ad hoc procedures.  The later being largely responsible for the decades long declined in productivity within the construction sector throughout America.

While 0ur AECOO (architecture, engineering, construction, operations, owner) sector is resistant to change and relatively adverse to technology, the convergence of worldwide market drivers and the disruptive technologies that will change the very way we do business.  However, the issues of (check one, or more) global climate change, dwindling non-renewal energy supplies, and/or the altered economic landscape, are forcing greater efficiencies.  And, of course, buildings are a major consumer of petrochemical products… high energy users, and a primary source of green house gas and other emissions.  These drivers to reduce environmental impacts as well as improve productivity will force relatively dramatic change.

Relative to technology….  technology’s  role in one of supporting processes relative to faster implementation/deployment, and consistent/scalable use.  That said, cloud computing not only accomplishes the above more efficiently, but adds previously unattainable levels of collaboration and transparency.  A “FACEBOOK for Facilities Construction and Life-cycle Operations” is on the horizon.  Just think of the impacts that FACEBOOK and other social media had upon Egypt recently, and the power of cloud computing begins clearer.  The next aspect is of course BIM.  Once we get beyond the distraction of 3D visualization, BIM, combined with, deployed by, and practiced via cloud computing BIM will become a game changer.   BIM definition, from NIBS, and I paraphrase, is the life-cycle management of facilities supported by digital technology.  A glimpse of a strategic BIM framework (BIMF) from a process perspective is shown below.   The integration of these activities, associated competencies, business processes, and supporting technologies via cloud computing is the foundation of BIM.

Central to the discussion of AEC process change within the scope of this discussion also include:

-Construction Project Delivery Methods for NEW and EXISTING buildings, specifically Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) and Job Order Contracting (JOC) …, as noted above and below….
-Sustainability and the concept of High Performance Buildings
-Higher Level FM Processes – LEAN, TCO / Total Cost of Ownership / Life-cycle Management
-Standards (data formats, lexicon, taxonomies, interoperability, metrics vs. benchmarks)

Job order contracting, known and implemented as SABER in the Air Force, one example of IPD, or integrated project delivery developed over twenty years ago within the DOD sector.  It has only recently begun to be adopted and deployed in other sectors in an accelerated manor, including non-DOD federal government, state/county/&local governments, higher educations and large k-12 school districts, hospitals and clinics, as well as airports and transportation authorities.

As an  example of productivity improvements afforded by JOC.  What typically took over a year to accomplish in months or even weeks.  Furthermore quality is improve, change orders are reduced, and lawsuits are virtually eliminated.  A comparison of IPD/JOC and tradition delivery methods is shown below.

Thus, in summary, below is road map of where we have been, and where we are going.

A Step Closer to BIM? NIBS and AIA Working toward Centralized Building Information Resource

Let’s face it,  the virtually singularly low rate of productivity of the AECOO (architecture, engineering, construction, operations, owner) sector for the past several decades is due to our CULTURE.

As a group, we are kings of the “not invented here” syndrome… or the “my way is the better way” syndrome.  Also, the “let’s keep the Owner in the dark” or the “let’s not work together”, and the “bid low and make it up in change orders” , or “let’s accept the lowest bid and hope for the best” approaches to ruin.

As I’ve previously noted, the altered world economic and environmental landscapes will force CULTURAL change in our industry.  Architects, Engineers, and Contractors new motto will be “our best customer is a smart customer”.  Why?  It’s simple, collaboration and improved “cradle to cradle” facility life-cycle management approaches will be required for survival.  Furthermore, cloud computing and proven collaborative construction delivery methods such as Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) and “IPD-lite”, also known as Job Order Contracting, the latter for facility repair, renovation, sustainability and minor new construction, will converge to enable knowledge sharing among all facility stakeholders.

The signing of an agreement between The American Institute of Architects and the
National Institute of Building Sciences to Work Together on Promoting Building Industry Research and Knowledge
is just one indication of the our “changing AECOO landscape”.  It demonstrates the two organizations’ mutual interest in the design, construction, operations and maintenance of high-performance buildings and the desire… no better yet the recognized NEED TO COLLABORATE on issues surrounding these topics.

A primary initial goal of the “partnership” is the joint development of an on-line portal for building industry research and knowledge.   It’s amazing how many in our industry are not even aware of NIBS or Smart Building Alliance.  The march toward BIM, and recognizing its true potential as “efficient building life-cycle management support by technology and standardized processes, taxonomy, etc.” vs. “pretty 3D pictures” will know hopefully gain traction and momentum.

Building Information Management Framework - BIMF

via – premier software for cost estimating and efficient project delivery – JOC, SABER, IPD, SATOC, MATOC, IDIQ, POCA, MACC, BOA ….

Beyond Green – High Performance Buildings, BIM, and Life-cycle Facility Management

Let’s face it, LEED is a great marketing tool, but NOT the solution.  “Kudos” to LEED for building awareness  and  addressing the need to focus upon sustainability of the built environment!

That said,  high performance buildings should not cost significantly more that “typical construction”.  The paperwork and methods involved in LEED add superfluous costs and will not necessarily yield optimal results.   I have entered far too many LEED certified  buildings with massive glass multi-story areas and other clearly “non-sustainable” items.  There should be little to no cost premium for a sustainable building.   Even now, studies show that a 2% premium is all that is required.   I would further argue that no premium is really need should basic standards be a requirement and market efficiencies take hold.  Also, over the life-cycle of a building, a sustainable, high-performance building will win on ROI every time as only 10%-20% of life-cycle cost go into construction, vs. operations, maintenance, etc.

Efficient ongoing life-cycle management of facilities is the key to sustainability.   It is probable that many, if not most LEED buildings constructed are no longer meeting their design goals.  Why?  They are simply not being monitored maintained on a proactive life-cycle basis.  Why not?   The culture of our industry and awareness of the true meaning of BIM need dramatic if/not disruptive change and  improvement.

BIM is the life-cycle management of the built environment supported by technology… not pretty 3D pictures that don’t link to value knowledge domains.   Further, collaboration is the key to BIM, and collaboration is dictated by AEC delivery methods.  Traditional delivery methods such as design-bid-build (DBB) and even attempts at improving it such as design-build (DB) and construction manager at risk (CMAR) are flawed as they inevitably pit some of the key parties involved against one another.

Integrated project delivery (IPD) and job order contracting (JOC), the latter “IPD-lite” specifically for renovation, repair, sustainability, and minor construction projects, are critical to BIM and to altering the inefficient and adversarial processes that dominant our industry today.

BIMF - A Framework for BIM