Commercial Energy Assessor

Outline of Job

The job of a commercial energy assessor is to determine energy efficiency within non-domestic abodes. They will do this by carrying out measurements on energy levels and inputting data to computer software. They will need to produce an EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) for non-domestic buildings, which will report on energy efficiency and level of carbon dioxide emissions. They can then recommend clients on how to better results. Commercial energy assessors are sometimes known as non-domestic energy assessors. This is a relatively new role, brought about by the need to produce EPCs on the development, rent or sale of non-domestic structures.

Daily Activities

  • Measuring energy usage
  • Gathering information on structures, such as age and number of rooms
  • Using computer software to produce energy ratings
  • Collecting information on heating methods
  • Gathering information on windows in relation to energy use
  • Working on non-domestic buildings
  • Liaising with an assortment of clients
  • Producing EPC reports
  • Advising clients on how to better energy efficiency

Skills Required

  • Good communication skills
  • IT competent in order to produce EPC reports
  • Good mathematic skills
  • Understanding of construction methods
  • Able to keep records of building measurements
  • Attention to detail and good observational skills
  • Able to recommend necessary changes to clients based on EPC reports
  • Time-management skills
  • Practical approach
  • Knowledge of building regulations and safety issues

Expected Earnings & Conditions

As this is a relatively new position it is difficult to state the typical salary for starters and those with experience. However, the government has released estimates of work time and the cost of EPC production:

  • EPC for small retail unit - less than a day costing £260
  • EPC for small commercial unit - around a day costing £480
  • EPC for large commercial building - typically four days costing £1,790

These figures are likely to change with time. In the market there are commercial energy assessor positions offering in the region of £35,000 for those with experience. Starters can expect to earn less than £20,000.

There is the possibility to work full or part-time. You may need to work during the day, evening, or at weekends to suit the needs of the client. Those moving into freelance work will be able to negotiate their own salary. You will need to work on-site and will be required to wear safety equipment.

Qualifications & Experience Required

There are accredited schemes in place to gain the necessary qualifications to become a commercial energy assessor. This is to ensure you have the essential skills to carry out quality energy assessments. The CLG (Communities and Local Government) website has information on accredited schemes. There are two ways to do this, either by way of acquiring qualifications if new to the sector, or through APEL (Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning), if you have already worked in the construction sector. You will also need a driving licence.

By way of qualifications - You will need to attain a Level 3 Diploma in Non-Domestic Energy Assessment. To do this you will need to complete a minimal of five assessed EPCs and undertake several exams. The Asset Skills Energy Assessors website has information concerning National Occupational standards, detailing the skills and knowledge required for this role.

The diploma is provided by the ABBE (Awarding Body of the Built Environment) and the NFOPP (National Federation of Property Professionals). If you complete the diploma you can apply for the status of level 3 commercial energy assessor, and will be able to work on small non-domestic buildings, but will need further training to work on new structures.

By way of APEL - This is available to those with work experience in the construction industry, including practitioners such as energy assessors, surveyors and services engineers. It is also available to those with experience using SBEM (Simplified Building Energy Model). You may be accredited at level 3, able to work on small non-domestic buildings, or level 4, able to work on new buildings and more complex structures. The achieved level will depend on experience.

Those with considerable experience, and who are knowledgeable with using SBEM, may be accredited at level 5, which will enable you to work on complex structures with large quantities of glass.

Additional Training & Development

You would typically start out as a level 3 CEA, able to work on small buildings, and then with the necessary qualifications and experience, move up to level 4, working on more complex structures with large air-conditioning units. Those acquiring a great level of experience can move up to level 5, working on complex buildings with large quantities of glass. Development will depend on qualifications attained and level of experience. All non-domestic buildings in development, for rent or sale require an EPC, which in turn increases the number of openings.

Additional training is available from the ABBE and NFOPP. You will need to attain qualifications at varying levels to develop your career. Level 3 qualifications enable you to work on small buildings, level 4 to work on more complex structures, and level 5 to work on very complex buildings with large amounts of glass.