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Author: U.S. Department of Energy
Publication Date: 2017

This summary from a Better Buildings Residential Network peer exchange call focused on innovative approaches to increase contractors' work quality through feedback reports and contractor ranking, decrease quality assurance costs through remote quality assurance, and improve contractor engagement. It features speakers from Consumers Energy, Enhabit, and DOE.

Author: NYSERDA
Publication Date: 2017

New York Home Performance with ENERGY STAR offers a series of training videos for new contractors covering topics such as creating processes and procedures to manage projects, consumer incentives and financing options, and Quality Assurance (QA) inspections.

Author: Tim Guiterman, EnergySavvy; Jeff Perkins, ERS
Publication Date: 2017

This presentation describes how programs have leveraged data to increase program energy savings, with a spotlight on advanced and real-time monitoring and verification (M&V 2.0), contractor scorecards, and intelligent quality assurance (QA) and monitoring.

Author: Dale Hoffmeyer, U.S. Department of Energy; Chris Baker, Arizona Public Service (APS); Torsten Glidden, Build It Green
Publication Date: 2016

Achieving energy savings goals and improving customer and contractor satisfaction while staying cost-effective makes managing home energy upgrade programs challenging. DOE's Home Upgrade Program Accelerator is working with program administrators to identify strategies that overcome challenges and achieve better results. The Arizona Home Performance with ENERGY STAR program completed process improvements that improved contractor satisfaction and deceased quality assurance labor.  Build It Green implemented software improvements to their utility program's online rebate applications portal to accelerate data processing.

Author: U.S. Department of Energy
Publication Date: 2016

This summary from a Better Buildings Residential Network peer exchange call focused on quality assurance of energy efficiency services.

Monitor the effectiveness of contractor and workforce development efforts, motivate improvement, address low performers, and adapt on a regular basis.

Communicate program results to contractor partners and workforce development stakeholders.

 Implement contractor coordination and workforce recruitment and training in concert with other program components

Determine processes for collecting and sharing data about key contractor metrics and workforce development activities.

Develop contractor engagement, quality assurance, and workforce development plans that include strategies, workflow, timelines, and staff and partner roles and responsibilities.

Develop workforce and contractor engagement procedures, forms, and materials

Establish relationships with contractors who will deliver program products and services, and with organizations that train and certify workers.

Solidify your program strategy and decide which customers you will focus on; what products, services, and support you will provide; and how you will partner with contractors and others to deliver services to your customers.

Support and partner with the workforce who will deliver your program’s energy efficiency services by understanding their capacity, recruiting contractor partners, enabling technical training and business development support, fostering clear communication, and refining program processes over time, in partnership with your workforce.

Establish objectives, targets, and timeframes for your program to support local contractors and the type and quality of service they provide to help meet your program’s goals.

Energy Efficiency and Conservation Loan Program Webinar Series: #4 Residential Energy Efficiency Deep Dive, Part Two
Author: U.S. Department of Agriculture; U.S. Department of Energy
Publication Date: 2014
Presentation, Media, Transcript

This webinar is the fourth (in a series of six) hosted by USDA Rural Utility Service (RUS) and focusing on the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Loan Program (EECLP). The second in a two-part series, this webinar shares best practices from the more than 40 competitively selected state and local governments who participated in the U.S. Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Neighborhood Program. This webinar focuses on data collection and continuous improvement, partnering with financial institutions, community-based outreach, and quality assurance of contractor work. It also features a case study from Jackson Electric Member Corporation about their audit tools, rebates and loans, tracking and reporting, and marketing and advertising strategies.

Manage third-party impact and process evaluation activities by coordinating with evaluators, transferring data, and overseeing evaluation deliverables. 

Identify and implement systems and tools that will support data collection and data quality necessary for effective evaluation.

Launch your financing activities in coordination with other program components.

Develop the procurement, outreach, and loan support resources required to perform your financing activities.

Author: U.S. Department of Energy
Publication Date: 2014

This guide assists with developing an implementation plan for a Home Performance with ENERGY STAR program. It covers key elements of the plan, including the scope and objectives of the program and the policies and procedures that will ensure its success, including co-marketing and brand guidelines (section 1), workforce development and contractor engagement (section 3), assessment and report requirements (section 4), installation specifications and test-out procedures (section 5), and quality assurance (section 6).

Identify and develop needed resources to position your organization in the market and maintain a viable business model.

Author: New Jersey Clean Energy
Publication Date: 2014

This presentation provides an overview of New Jersey Clean Energy's approach to contractor engagement, including contractor participation requirements, procedures for quality assurance and quality control, production incentives, training procedures, and an online contractor portal.

Improve your program’s efficiency and effectiveness through regular information collection, assessment, decision-making, adaptation, and communication.

Research and analyze the specific barriers, needs, and opportunities for a residential energy efficiency program in your community.

Ensure a positive customer experience with your program from launch through implementation over time.

Establish metrics and measurement strategies for understanding whether you are effectively achieving your program goals and meeting your customers’ needs, while identifying areas that can be improved.

Develop a detailed plan for launching and operating your program that integrates all program components into a process that is customer-friendly and efficient for contractors and other partners.

Establish relationships with organizations that can help deliver your program by enhancing your knowledge, resources, capabilities and access to customers and contractors.

Solidify your program strategy and decide which customers you will focus on; what products, services, and support you will provide; and how you will partner with contractors and others to deliver services to your customers.

Design a residential energy efficiency program that integrates marketing and outreach, contractor coordination, incentives, financing, and program evaluation to provide customers with the products and services they want through a customer-centric process.

Author: U.S. Department of Energy
Publication Date: 2014

This summary from a Better Buildings Residential Network peer exchange call focused on quality assurance and control, standardization of upgrades and workforce expectations.

Develop evidence-based insights into your program’s performance through third-party process and impact evaluations. Learn how to develop effective data collection strategies and timely evaluations to identify important program achievements as well as opportunities for making program improvements.

Identify and partner with financial institutions that can provide capital, underwriting, and other functions to enable your customers to access financing.

Determine if enhancements to existing financing products or the development of new products are necessary to allow you to achieve your goals and objectives.

Define your business model, including market position, products and services, type of customers, financial model, governance structure, and the assets and infrastructure your organization needs.

Author: Patrick Roche, Conservation Services Group
Publication Date: 2012

Presentation describing how Conservation Services Group uses data to monitor market transformation and for internal QA/QC purposes.

Author: U.S. Department of Energy
Publication Date: 2012

This peer exchange call summary focused on the challenges, benefits, quality assurance methods and incorporation of do-it-yourself projects into programs.

Author: U.S. Department of Energy
Publication Date: 2012

This video explains how Better Buildings for Michigan's performance metrics and quality assurance enabled them to encourage high-performing contractors, to help underperforming contractors improve, and ultimately to dismiss some contractors.

Author: New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)
Publication Date: 2012

To deliver the most effective residential energy efficiency programs possible, NYSERDA implemented a quality assurance process to verify that projects meet all program requirements while maintaining healthy and safe conditions for the occupants.

Author: U.S. Department of Energy
Publication Date: 2011

This publication includes best practices for how to create a quality assurance plan and the key components that these plans should include.

Author: U.S. Department of Energy
Publication Date: 2011

This peer exchange call summary focused on the challenges and effective combinations of quality assurance strategies.

Author: Community Benefits Law Center
Publication Date: 2010

Summary of the standards that support job quality, equitable access and quality assurance in several residential energy efficiency programs from different parts of the country.

Author: New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)
Publication Date: 2010

Two visual flow charts, one that illustrates the process starting with customer interest to final incentive payment, and another that illustrates the program's quality assurance process.

Quality Assurance for Residential Retrofit Programs
Author: Jim Grevatt, Vermont Energy Investment Corporation
Publication Date: 2010
Presentation, Media, Transcript

This DOE Technical Assistance Program webcast covers why quality assurance is important for residential upgrade programs, how to define realistic goals, and the key elements of a QA program.

A comprehensive evaluation of more than 40 residential energy efficiency programs across the country found that programs were more successful when they provided customers with lists of pre-approved contractors. Customers can become overwhelmed when there are too many choices, and they need information to determine which contractors are qualified to do their home energy upgrade. To help customers distinguish among contractors and select the best for their project, many programs provide...

Once home energy upgrades are underway, energy efficiency programs want to avoid call-backs and enhance their reputation. Because the quality of work that affiliated contractors conduct in customers’ homes reflects on the whole program, it’s important to ensure quality work; however, verifying a consistent level of quality can be challenging. Better Buildings Neighborhood Program partners and Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Sponsors have found that having a clear process for...

Everyone likes to be recognized for their achievements; it motivates us to continue working hard. Likewise, contractors appreciate being recognized for their home performance accomplishments. Successful residential energy efficiency programs have found that giving awards for good contractor performance can help build trust, strengthen partnerships, and boost workforce morale. ...