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In this issue | July 2014
"As a credentialing body, we ask credential holders to meet high industry standards and continuously improve as organizations and instructors. We hold ourselves to the same standards." 
Laure-Jeanne Davignon
IREC Credentialing Program Director
 

 

 

 

 























FEATURE COLUMN

by Laure-Jeanne Davignon, IREC Credentialing Program Director

LJ

 

 

Finding Our Way... How New Roadmap Leads to Value for All 

 

Four-hundred-billion dollars (that's $400 billion!) spent on energy in U.S. buildings per year. Two years of work. Fifty-four organizations. One-hundred-twenty-five recommendations. These numbers only tell part of the story.

 

On June 26, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) released the Energy Efficiency Standardization Coordination Collaborative (EESCC) Standardization Roadmap, which provides "a national framework for action and coordination on energy efficiency standardization to advance energy efficiency in the built environment."

 

As IREC President/CEO Jane Weissman related in her July column in The IREC Report, the EESCC recognizes that a strong and competent workforce provides the underpinning for growth and consumer acceptance, and that credentials play a crucial role in developing that workforce. In support of this important acknowledgment, IREC was invited to co-chair a cross-sector working group of 30 organizations to develop the roadmap's recommendations around workforce credentialing.

 

Our working group quickly acknowledged that all credentials are not created equal, and that the market needs 'quality indicators' so industry, government and consumers can identify credentials that are developed and administered according to best practices. As we worked to reach industry consensus around these indicators, Jane and I had an opportunity see how IREC's credentialing programs measure up.

 

Turns out, we're doing very well.

 

Balanced stakeholder input on accreditation requirements? Check. Policies that guide the program? Check. Qualified and trained assessors? Check. The roadmap verified that we are doing a lot of the 'right things,' while at the same time giving IREC a path to ensure our credentials increasingly "hold demonstrated market value for workers, employers and consumers" (another roadmap recommendation).

 

As a credentialing body, we ask credential holders to meet high industry standards and continuously improve as organizations and instructors. Can we ask less of ourselves? No, we hold ourselves to the same standards.  

 

What if all organizations did this? Does yours?

 

The credibility of the IREC credential becomes even more evident in the context of further roadmap recommendations. The EESCC makes a strong statement regarding recognition of valid credentials by state and federal agencies. We base the IREC Credentialing Program on best practices, so the mark our credential holders earn is taken seriously by government, funders and potential partners.

 

The roadmap also recommends that training programs seek third-party accreditation of their energy efficiency content. If you are already accredited or certified by IREC, know that you lead the industry on this front, and can point to the roadmap as another piece of evidence that you follow the best practices out there.

 

Finally, the roadmap calls for industry to undertake validation studies to verify the impact of workforce credentials on workers, employers and energy savings. IREC joins our EESCC colleagues in supporting opportunities to demonstrate the value of credentialing with cold, hard data that cannot be ignored or denied. We see this as one of the key factors in increasing your payback from investment in industry credentials. 

 

We continue to focus on the goal that all sectors of industry recognize what the roadmap states:  "When developed correctly, credentials bring value to all stakeholders." We couldn't agree more.

 

For more information about the EESCC's findings, read Jane Weissman's recent column. You may download the full EESCC Standardization Roadmap here (free pdf.)

EVENTS
JULY

  

AUG 

  

SEPT
9/9-10 | ANSI-IREC Accreditation Workshop
Washington, DC
 
Aspen, CO

  

OCT
Las Vegas, NV

 

10/21-23 | IREC 3iForum
Solar Power International
Las Vegas, NV

 

Solar Power International
Las Vegas, NV  

 

Visit IREC's online calendar for more events.
As the energy training and technical assistance coordinator for the FSL Southwest Building Science Training Center (SWBSTC), self-described building science black belt Chris Baker has more than 15 years at SWBSTC's weatherization program, as a program administrator, crew trainer and energy auditor/technician. Recently, Chris sat down with IREC and talked about his work and why energy efficiency in the built environment is so important. More
By Kristen Ferguson, Manager of Assessor Training & Development, IREC Credentialing Program
At the recent Weatherization Training Network Trainer's Consortium, where IREC was invited to talk about instructional design, I confessed that I didn't always recognize the need to actively improve as a trainer. What was I thinking? To atone for my cavalier (and mistaken) belief, I gladly share five things I'm learning to help me improve my skills as a trainer: More
Jane Weissman, IREC President/CEO

Oh no, another roadmap! Sometimes dubbed business or strategic plans, they come with different personalities and effectiveness. Many end up sitting on the proverbial "shelf," but I'm writing about one that won't collect dust.  More


IREC Clean Energy Certificate Standard Approved by ANSI as an American National Standard
A new national standard to accredit clean energy education/training certificate programs, developed by IREC, has received final approval from the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) as an American National Standard. ANSI/IREC Standard 14732:2014, developed by an independent subject matter expert working group, aligns with real-world skills needed in the clean energy workforce. More

Ready to apply for the IREC Credential? Did you know you can use IREC's Credentialing Management System (CMS)? The latest CMS Reference Guide will help you understand the process. The CMS is also the portal to update personal information, upload supporting documents, check your progress and more. More

ANSI-IREC Accreditation Workshop 
This day-and-a-half workshop September 9-10 will introduce interested stakeholders to the IREC standard for clean energy certificate programs and address attendee's specific questions about the accreditation process. Participants will leave the workshop with a detailed plan to assemble a successful accreditation application. The workshop will be held at ANSI's Washington, DC office. Register via email to dholmes@ansi.org
Of note...
 
The IREC Candidate Handbook, an invaluable reference for candidates as they prepare for and undergo the IREC assessment process or maintain their credential, has been recently updated to include: 
  • Eligibility requirements for IREC Instructor or Master Trainer Emeritus Status. (p13)
  • Term of candidacy for the IREC credential. (p18)
  • Change of ownership of an Accredited Body. (p37)
  • Clarification of the timeline for revocation of a credential due to failure to complete annual maintenance (90 days). (p30)
 
 

 

Still wondering how credentials matter? How they're being leveraged? The CECC has posted a series of case studies that demonstrate the value of credentialing, for education/training programs and instructors, prospective students, employers and ultimately consumers.  

 

The CECC represents a group of well-established, nationally accredited credentialing organizations united in their commitment to clean energy quality, safety and efficiency. The coalition encourages consumers, employers, energy incentive programs and other stakeholders to look for quality credentials as a distinguishing mark among the growing number of renewable energy and energy efficiency professionals, products, trainers and training programs. IREC is a proud founding member. To learn more, visit www.cleanenergycredentials.org


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The IREC Credentialing Program lays the foundation for a competent workforce for the clean energy economy. Using robust standards and a detailed process of application and assessment, IREC drives quality workforce training and increased consumer confidence in the industry.  
 
About IREC
The Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) is a non-profit organization that believes clean energy is critical to achieving a sustainable and economically strong future. To pave this clean energy path, IREC works to expand consumer access to clean energy; generates information and objective analysis grounded in best practices and standards; and leads programs to build a quality clean energy workforce, including a unique credentialing program for renewable energy and energy efficiency training providers and instructors. Since 1982, IREC's programs and policies have benefitted energy consumers, policymakers, utilities and the clean energy industry. As of July 2013, IREC is an accredited American National Standards Developer.

Disclaimer 
The Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC) does not assume any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, apparatus, product or process that is referred to or linked to in this newsletter. Reference to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not necessarily constitute or imply IREC's endorsement or recommendation. 
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