Benefits of third-party building commissioning

Nov 25, 2020
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According to a 2014 construction engineering white paper published by Burns & McDonnell, “commissioning is a process designed to optimize the built environment for energy efficiency, leading to reduced energy costs and enhanced building performance.” Commissioning is one of the most cost-effective actions a building owner can take to save money. It helps ensure that you’re getting the building you wanted and paid for, and we offer it to you with increased benefit because we are an independent third party beyond the owner or the contractor.

Why should building owners care?

Commissioning will reduce your construction and warranty issues and improve your comfort and building performance. In new construction, it can track your building designs and make sure they are followed through to reality. In existing buildings, it can recover some of the energy efficiency lost over time through low- or no-cost adjustments to building systems. CEE’s engineers offer extensive information and documentation of the whole process, as well as regular team communication throughout — and after the initial phase of commissioning work has ended, there is an opportunity to continue monitoring performance over the next year.

Why should contractors care?

Commissioning improves planning and coordination in the construction process. The project is completed sooner, and there are fewer outstanding deficiencies upon substantial completion. All of that will mean fewer call backs to make adjustments and more satisfied clients and owners.

Why is it important to use a third-party commissioning service?

CEE’s engineers operate independently of any design team, contractors, or retailers. We are hired by the owner to represent the owner’s interests. This eliminates any potential conflicts of interest — we aren’t trying to sell you on any particular product or service. This means that we can be honest with you about the problems and the best solutions. Essentially, our being third party means that we are unbiased — you can trust us! Third-party commissioning providers like CEE specialize in commissioning itself, rather than merely providing it as a part of a construction management or design service. That also means we are focused, as commissioning is our only role in a construction project. Additionally, it can be difficult for contractors and designers — really, for anyone — to objectively assess their own work. CEE engineers act as an extra set of eyes to spot inconsistencies and potential problems before they can negatively affect the project.

How can I get started?

Commissioning is one of the highest-value actions a building owner can take to save money and reclaim total control of their building's operations. If you want to hear more about our third-party commissioning work, contact CEE’s Director of Engineering Mark Hancock, P.E., at or 612-335-5861.