Energy efficiency is important to achieving our nation’s goal of improving use of resources. Buildings account for a large percentage of our energy consumption and represent an opportunity to improve performance. As energy efficiency demands increase, there is also an increase in demand for a commercial buildings workforce with advanced competencies in operations, maintenance, and energy-related technologies. Valuable, competency-based, training in the commercial workforce can increase staff morale, lead to faster career progression, and increase building efficiency.  

Demand for a commercial buildings workforce with advanced competencies in energy-related technology is increasing, driven by policy initiatives and regulatory requirements, technology advancements, and building owners’ interest in saving energy and money. Jobs in the commercial buildings workforce field range from HVAC technicians to engineers and business leaders. By mapping a broad spectrum of jobs across four key areas in commercial buildings industry, potential job seekers and employers can explore possible positions and pathways.

In collaboration with the Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (DOE EERE) and the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS)/DOE Better Buildings Workforce Guidelines project, the Consortium for Building Energy Innovation (CBEI) worked with industry leaders including: the Pennsylvania State University and Facility Engineering Associates (FEA) to develop a career map for the advanced commercial building workforce (ACBW) that provides a support system to build a better workforce, specifically for the following job groups: Building Operations Professional, Energy Auditor, Building Commissioning Professional, and Energy Manager. The ACBW career map will be used to demonstrate what possible careers look like in terms of sequential positions, roles, credentials, experience and education/training.

The ACBW Career Map includes: (1) the ability to plot emerging entry-level and professional-level credentials; (2) the articulation of clear pathways for advancement of incumbent workers in the building trades and construction industry professions and (3) the identification of strategic entry points for veterans, trades, and other job seekers.

The map outlines common paths for moving within and across jobs in ways that facilitate growth and career advancement. The career map makes it easy to visualize each position or role as a pathway through entry level, mid-level and advanced level. 

It includes the following information:  

  • Strategic entry points are highlighted with job summaries, education, training and associated credentials.
  • Mid-level profiles include job summaries with core responsibilities, associated credentials, education, training, and links to the specified Competency Model.  
  • Advanced-level profiles illustrate jobs that currently exist in the field.  (All of these points are jobs that currently exist in the field).