Building Operator Certification

What is Building Operator Certification (BOC)?

BOC Group
Some of the BOC graduates of the first training series,
which ended in April 2006.

Building Operator Certification (BOC) is professional development training for operations and maintenance staff working in public, commercial and institutional buildings. The program offers a series of training courses on the energy and resource- efficient operation of buildings. Successfully completing these courses and their assigned projects qualifies individuals for certification awarded by the Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (MEEA).

What are the goals of BOC? BOC achieves measurable energy savings in the operation of public facilities and commercial buildings by training individuals directly responsible for day-to-day operations. The program establishes a standard of professional competence in energy and resource-efficient building operations and maintenance, identifying and recognizing the building operators who meet this standard.

What is covered in the training?

BOC training consists of a series of seven courses--eight full days of training-on building systems, energy-conservation techniques, HVAC systems and controls, lighting, environmental health and safety regulations, indoor air quality, and facility electrical systems. Descriptions of the seven courses are listed below.

BOC 1001 - Energy Efficient Operation of Building HVAC Systems (Core)
Provides an overview of the Building Operator Certification program and fundamentals of building systems. Focuses on operation and maintenance of envelope, central heating, cooling, air and ventilating systems in buildings. Emphasis is placed on group problem-solving and exercises with respect to preventive maintenance. Two-day class.

BOC 1002 - Measuring and Benchmarking Energy Performance (Core)
Operators learn how energy is used in commercial buildings and how to identify and prioritize conservation opportunities. Includes basic principles of energy accounting, evaluation of fuel options, operation and maintenance strategies to improve efficiency, and energy management planning techniques. Participants will learn how to perform quantifiable evaluations of their facilities' energy use in order to be able to target prospects for energy conservation. One-day class.

BOC 1003 - Efficient Lighting Fundamentals (Core)
Covers lighting fundamentals and types of lighting for economical and energy efficient lighting systems. Participants learn principles of efficient lighting including evaluation of lighting levels, quality and maintenance. Other topics include lighting fixture and control technologies, common upgrades, retrofit and redesign options, and management strategies as they apply to space use and function. One-day class.

BOC 1004 - HVAC Controls Fundamentals (Core)
Provides an introduction to automatic control systems and equipment, particularly for central air systems. Participants will learn to target possible inefficiencies in their HVAC systems and to evaluate potential problems as part of an enhanced operation and maintenance program. One-day class.

BOC 1005 - Indoor Environmental Quality (Core)
Introduces the basic causes of indoor environmental quality problems and begins to develop a method of diagnosis and solution. Students will gain an understanding of the dynamic components of indoor environmental quality in relation to source control, occupant sensitivity and ventilation. Emphasis will be placed on communications with building occupants for reliable investigations without aggravating existing issues. One-day class.

BOC 1006 - Common Opportunities for Low-Cost Operational Improvement (Core)
This class introduces common opportunities that offer the greatest energy savings potential. This module examines typical areas and problems associated with different system types and equipment as well as tools and techniques for identifying opportunities. One-day class.

BOC 1007 - Facility Electrical Systems (Supplemental)
Participants will learn basic electrical theory, safety procedures, power distribution, and energy conservation to develop a practical understanding of electricity and its use in commercial facilities. Participants will learn basic troubleshooting in order to effectively work with licensed staff and/or contractors with ongoing electrical problems and maintenance support. One-day class.

How is the training conducted and how long does it take?

BOC training includes classroom study, small group exercises, open-book exams and project assignments based on the participants' own facilities. Participants receive 56 hours of classroom training and complete five in-facility projects, each requiring approximately two hours of work outside the classroom. The projects are designed to demonstrate participants' competence in locating building heating and cooling equipment, distribution paths and control points; facility energy accounting; HVAC energy inspection reporting; and facility lighting surveys. Except for the course on HVAC systems, each course in the BOC training series is completed in a one-day training session. HVAC Systems and Controls is a two-day course. Typically, courses are scheduled one per month over a seven-month period. Upon completion of the classes and passing scores on the homework and exams, students will receive a Training Certification of Completion. To earn BOC Certification and become a Certified Building Operator (CBO), you must pass a comprehensive exam. The exam takes place after the course is completed and exam applications have been reviewed. For more information regarding the certification exam, please visit BOC Certification Exam.

How do I register for BOC?

To register for BOC courses in Missouri, see the schedule of courses on the BOC website. Complete the online registration form for your course or contact the Division of Energy for more information.

What are the Costs of the Program?

The Division of Energy of the Missouri Department of Economic Development, in cooperation with the Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance, is providing BOC training in Missouri with the generous support of AmerenUE, Columbia Water and Light, Empire District Electric Company, Kansas City Power and Light, Spire Inc. and Springfield City Utilities. Individuals working at organizations in these utilities' service areas are eligible to enroll in BOC training at a cost of $1,150. If you are employed by an organization that is not a customer of one of these utilities, please contact the Division of Energy for more information about eligibility and costs to participate in the BOC training program.