5 Tips to Help You Get Specified on LEED Projects
- < Accessible Design, Universal Design, and Social Equity in the AEC Industry—Part 1
- > How E-Business and Customer Empowerment Affects Building Product Manufacturers
The world of product manufacturing is a gamble and full of risks. So many variables outside of the manufacturers control can affect the outcome, and this has been the case since the beginning of product manufacturing. But with the speed that the AEC industry is changing, it’s easy to get overwhelmed or wonder if your product will become obsolete in the move toward sustainability, regenerative, and resilient architecture, design, and construction. Getting specified on projects, especially LEED projects, is a rigorous process, but also more important to business sustainability and growth.
So, What Can be Done to Hedge Your Bet for Specification and ROI?
- Join the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC): The USGBC is an organization for “real estate leaders, governments, developers, contractors, architects, engineers, educators, innovators, and companies working to build healthy, efficient, and equitable communities for all”. Their goals of continually making LEED a better rating system in order to build better communities and diversify sustainability supports their bottom line: people, planet, profit. The USGBC has nearly 12,000 members including real estate leaders, government employees, developers, contractors, architects, engineers, educators, and companies. Even if a product isn’t “green”, it still benefits the manufacturer to use the USGBC as a networking tool, as well as an educational tool.
- Have Transparency Documents Prepared: A previous blog, 4 Transparency Documents That Help Specification on Both LEED v4 & WELL Projects, explains in depth the value of Health Product Declarations (HPDs), Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs), Life Cycle Assessments (LCAs), and Declare Labels. Specifiers want to know what is in the products that are using and how they affect the environment. As LEED continues to evolve, requiring transparency documents has become the new norm. Elixir Environmental is a great resource for this process.
- Have an Understanding of LEED v4: Understanding the requirements of LEED v4 can lead to more specification opportunities, because you will understand how your product can meet a need in the project. Or, take it a step further and become a LEED Green Associate. In a previous blog, How LEED Courses Help Building Manufacturers Get Specified, we outlined the how LEED courses can help. But also, we offer a free LEED Prep Course that makes it easy to study for the LEED GA exam. If you’re not sure you know enough about LEED to take that leap into becoming a Green Associate, then read more about it in this post, What Building Product Reps Don’t Know About LEED v4.
- Have an Understanding of the WELL Building Standard: Similar to LEED, the WELL Building Standard is a set of standards for the AEC industry, but it focuses on the ways that buildings and everything in them can improve comfort and enhance, rather than compromise, health and wellness. Also, like LEED, the WELL Building Standard offers the opportunity to become an “expert” as a WELL Accredited Professional (WELL AP). While this standard isn’t as known or utilized yet, it internal health and wellness of buildings and the people in them is quickly becoming a focus in the AEC industry. Having this knowledge and credential could boost specification opportunities, especially if combined with a LEED GA credential.
- Attend the Greenbuild Conference and Expo: The Greenbuild Conference and Expo is the must-attend conference for sustainability in the AEC environment. Even if your product isn’t a “green” one, attending this conference will offer networking and education opportunities, as well as a first-hand look at what products are available in the sustainable build world and how they are marketed. The 2018 theme is “Human by Nature//The Intersection of Humanity and the Built Environment”, which is timely as there is a focus lately on the relationship between humans and nature in the AEC industry. That topic can be explored more in a previous blog post, “Creating Space to Nurture Our Human Nature in the Built World”.
As a product manufacturer, your job is more than just making a product and selling it. Innovation, education, networking, marketing, expansion—these all matter too. Which means you have a lot on your plate. Don’t make getting specified harder than it needs to be. Try one (or all) of these tips and let us know if any of them open more LEED project specifications.
Are you already doing any of these? If so, which one did you find most beneficial?
For more information or to discuss the topic of this blog, please contact Brad Blank