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Level of Confidence - An All-Important Provider Question, All-Important Owner’s Decision

Commissioning "ensures that a completed building operates as intended." Statements like this abound in the literature and on the websites of public and private entities promoting building commissioning. And yet, knowledgeable commission providers (CxP) and stakeholders know that strictly speaking, that isn't true.

The Building Commissioning Handbook might more accurately state that rather than ensure or guarantee performance, "The CxP can offer a level of certainty or assurance that the systems and assemblies are operating correctly, but that level of certainty is qualitative, not discrete, and varies with the expertise of the CxP, the amount of objectivity inherent in the assignment of commission roles, and the budget the Owner is willing to apply to commissioning."

In this session, a panel consisting of long-time commissioning providers, and a construction defects attorney will discuss how the perception that commissioning "ensures" performance can have a negative impact on the effectiveness of the commission process and create legal liability and insurance-related issues.

The discussion will also include the relationship between the level of performance assurance, level of risk, commissioning cost, project cost, and long-term operations costs.

And finally, we will discuss the responsibility of commissioning stakeholders to educate the public and other stakeholders regarding the distinction between "ensuring" performance and "providing a level of confidence."

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