A Standard for the Commissioning Process


The demand for commissioning services for new-building construction projects is experiencing rapid growth. Commissioning (Cx) is touted as being a quality-focused process for ensuring the owner’s project requirements (OPR) are met by design, final construction, and the operations of a building. To an owner this is just what is needed to receive a perfect building at occupancy. However, as many owners have realized, the Cx process does not guarantee the completed building will be what was expected. It should be pointed out that this is typically not caused by the Cx process, but the Cx process should or could have identified, in the early phases of the project, many of the issues that made it through to the completed building. There are a number of reasons why the Cx services received may not be optimal. Often it is poor communication and the transfer of knowledge between project teams. Cx should and can facilitate both communication and the transfer of knowledge from phase to phase. An adaptation of the quality function deployment (QFD) four-phase model can accomplish this by filling the gaps among the major Cx activities and provide a standard approach to the process. The four-phase model effectively links each of the Cx activities to each other and back to the OPR, providing a method for improved communication and knowledge transfer. This paper investigates some potential reasons for inconsistent Cx services, presents an argument for the need of a Cx standard, and proposes a potential standard.


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Second Department

Engineering Management and Systems Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Construction; Engineering management; Quality; Commissioning

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


File Type





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Publication Date

01 Aug 2015