If I was a Scout, my arm would be almost full of badges. Luckily my new one – an Elmhurst Energy Better Buildings Consultant logo – fits neatly onto the Murton & Co website.

Launched only last week, this new certification aims to showcase Elmhurst members’ broad range of accreditations and expertise so that both commercial and domestic clients can identify those of us with skills, knowledge, and experience across multiple areas. At its conference, Elmhurst Managing Director Stuart Fairlie reminded us about the need for a “fully competent and growing workforce who are equipped with the training and accreditation necessary to help us reach net zero standards, reduce demand on the grid and improve the resilience of our built environment”.

It’s a great initiative and should demonstrate to potential clients that we have a versatile skill set and a holistic understanding of all these issues. The scheme is open to all Elmhurst members who have an accreditation in energy assessment and a competency or accreditation in a second professional discipline, such as retrofit assessment and coordination, U-value calculation or ventilation.

I’m sure there will be rumblings from those wanting discounts on CPD or lunch vouchers for their £200 sign-up fee, but the scheme is in its infancy and obviously needs some nurturing. The concept that it demonstrates our abilities across multiple competencies is a good one and, like RICS membership, will ultimately generate an improved recognition of standards. Better Buildings Consultants might not have the depth of knowledge in every specialism, but this badge recognises that we do have relationships with other experts and can collaborate in order to provide clients with the required service.

I hope Elmhurst ramps up the criteria going forward to include elements like ethics and accountability so it becomes more challenging to attain. Like all sectors, those of us working in energy assessment need to be held accountable and should expect a degree of auditing. It’s not unreasonable to expect a tougher approach from an accreditation scheme in the same way that, as a member of the RICS, I’m terrified of making a mistake that might be seen as bringing the profession into disrepute and see me expelled from the membership. While this certification gains traction, I’m going to wear my badge with pride.

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