September 25, 2013

Solar Salespeople Better Know Their Stuff

Filed under: News — Sue McKeen @ 1:12 pm

Clifton Park, September 25, 2013

Solar Power World, Solar Salespeople Better Know Their Stuff by Richard Lawrence, Executive Director (NABCEP).  It’s important for solar installers to know their stuff, but a PV technical sales professional also should be one of the most knowledgeable people in the company. Not only does this position require a strong understanding of fundamental technical aspects of PV-system design and installation, but also knowledge of a variety of complex and ever-evolving financial matters. There’s a lot of talk about the importance of installer training. But if there is anyone in the company who needs a strong educational background and can benefit the most from ongoing training, it is the PV technical-sales professional.

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June 10, 2013

NABCEP is a Proud Supporter of Intersolar North America

Filed under: News — Richard Lawrence @ 9:52 am

Clifton Park, June 10, 2013

Intersolar North America, now in its seventh year, is taking place in San Francisco, CA, on July 8-10, 2014. NABCEP encourages its Registered Continuing Education Providers to exhibit at the most-attended US solar event. Benefit from the valuable networking opportunities and make connections with 27,000 professionals at the Moscone Convention Center.

Intersolar and NABCEP have a mutual interest in providing even more installer workshops in the field of Photovoltaics, PV Production, Energy Storage and Solar Heating and Cooling Technologies at Intersolar North America 2014. To that end, NABCEP Registered Continuing Education Providers exhibiting at Intersolar will receive the opportunity to hold a technical training workshop during the exhibition.

 

Workshop sessions may focus on the following training types:

 

  • Technical details of new products
  • Troubleshooting techniques and concerns
  • Appropriate system design
  • New applications for products

 

Workshop Quick Facts

 

Date                 July 8 – 9, 2014

Time                Morning Session or Afternoon Session (starting times TBD)

Duration         3.5 hours, includes 30 minutes of break time

Venue              Moscone Center, Level 3

Cost                 $300 per workshop

 

Provided           Workshop venue in the Moscone Center

Light beverages during breaks

A/V equipment with projectors, screens

Promotion of the Exhibitor Technical Workshops (online and print)

 

Sponsorship

Possibility for workshop providers to sponsor catering to their attendees

 

In order to become a workshop provider NABCEP Registered Continuing Education Providers will need to exhibit at Intersolar North America – apply here. Reserve your preferred booth space with Intersolar’s Booth Selector. For more information regarding pricing, venue information, available services, contact details, view Intersolar’s Exhibitor Information and Post-Show Report.

In order to help NABCEP Certificants and other supporters to attend, NABCEP has arranged special discounts on conference admission and workshop registrations, including free admission to the exhibition hall ($150 value!).

  • Free Exhibition Entry
  • 20% off Full Conference Package
  • 20% off PV Package
  • 10% off Technical Workshops

Registration codes will be provided to NABCEP Certificants within specific NABCEP Email Blasts. Registration will open in March 2014.

NABCEP will once again have a strong presence at this conference with a booth, a presentation by Executive Director, Richard Lawrence, on the lnnovation and Application Stage, and NABCEP Continuing Education Credits from workshops presented by Solar Energy International on each day of the event.

NABCEP is pleased to be a supporter of this exceptional industry conference and exhibition.  We encourage everyone in the solar industry to attend.  Mark your calendars for Intersolar North America 2014.

About Intersolar

With events spanning four continents, Intersolar is the world’s leading exhibition series for the solar industry and its partners. It unites people and companies from around the world with the aim of increasing the share of solar power in our energy supply.

Since being established in 2008, Intersolar North America has developed into the continent’s most attended solar event and the premier networking platform for the solar industry. Running in parallel with SEMICON West, it takes place annually at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, California, which is the most important US solar market.

The event’s exhibition and conference both focus on the areas of photovoltaics, PV production technologies, energy storage and solar thermal technologies. Since being founded, Intersolar has become the most important industry platform for manufacturers, suppliers, distributors, service providers and partners of the solar industry.

A total of 576 exhibitors and 17,881 trade visitors participated in Intersolar North America in 2013. The conference featured more than 50 sessions with over 200 speakers and catered to about 1,600 attendees.

With more than 20 years of experience, Intersolar has the unique ability to bring together members of the solar industry from across the world’s most influential markets. Intersolar exhibitions and conferences are held in Munich, San Francisco, Mumbai, Beijing and São Paulo. From 2014, these global events are being complemented by the Intersolar Summits taking place in emerging and growing markets worldwide.

For more information on Intersolar North America, please visit: www.intersolar.us

June 6, 2013

NABCEP Accredits First East Coast PV Installation Company

Filed under: News — Richard Lawrence @ 9:17 am

Clifton Park, NY, June 6, 2013 – NABCEP

The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) is very pleased to announce that Yes! Solar Solutions of Raleigh, North Carolina has achieved NABCEP Company Accreditation. They are the first east coast Company to achieve this credential. To earn this accreditation the PV installation company had to undergo a thorough and rigorous application and review process that included the submission of procedures and policies and an independent, third party inspections of previously installed systems. The core elements of NABCEP Company Accreditation include: employment of NABCEP certified installation and technical sales personnel, documented and consistent policies and programs as they relate to the operations of the company, ongoing worker training program(s), and a strong focus on worker safety.

Richard Lawrence, Executive Director of NABCEP, says; “Earning the NABCEP Company Accreditation is a major accomplishment for Yes! Solar Solutions. In order to achieve this accreditation they had to demonstrate a company-wide commitment to quality assurance throughout the sales, installation, and after-sale process.” He continues, “Our entire organization congratulates the team at Yes! Solar Solutions. They were a pleasure to work with during the application process and we were especially impressed with the results of the third-party inspections of their PV systems where they obtained a perfect score.”

Yes! Solar Solutions co-founders Stew Miller and Kathy Miller have been committed to having the most highly trained solar team since founding the company in 2009. Their emphasis on training and on NABCEP certification for employees has been a core value during the growth of the company.

President and co-founder Stew Miller states, “Our strategy is to be the best solar company we can be, to be more than we are required to be, and to have as close to 100% satisfaction as possible. The NABCEP Company Accreditation allowed us to examine our processes, with a third party audit. To have a perfect audit score was proof that it is our team that deserves the credit.”

CEO Kathy Miller cites the Yes! sponsorship of training, study time, prep classes and exam fees as evidence of commitment to having NABCEP certified employees. “For a small company, we are proud that our project managers, our construction manager and our salespeople are all NABCEP certified, and new employees are required to either have entry level NABCEP training or achieve it within 90 days. The NABCEP Company Accreditation is a good way to maintain a quality level for long-term growth and has a direct impact on customer satisfaction created by our installation and sales teams. And the marketing potential is a bonus.”

About NABCEP: The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) is the most respected, well-established, and widely recognized national certification organization for professional installers in the field of renewable energy. NABCEP is a volunteer board of representatives who are chosen based on their experience and involvement in the solar energy industry. NABCEP’s mission is to develop and implement quality credentialing and certification programs for practitioners by supporting and working closely with professionals and stakeholders in the renewable energy and energy efficiency industries. To learn more visit www.nabcep.org.

About Yes! Solar Solutions:  Yes! Solar Solutions designs and installs custom solar photovoltaic electric and solar water heating systems for residential, commercial, government and non-profit clients. Yes! Solar Solutions is committed to changing the way customers think about energy, while providing the education and resources to help make that change. Our mission is to create value for our customers, employees, and partners with sustainable solutions that enhance all of our lives. In addition being a NABCEP certified company, we are Green Plus certified company, committed to triple bottom line sustainability in people, performance and planet. For information visit www.yessolarsolutionsnc.com.

February 21, 2013

NABCEP Announces Accredited PV Installation Company

Filed under: News — Richard Lawrence @ 10:29 am

Clifton Park, NY, February 20, 2013 – NABCEP

The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) is very pleased to announce that Synergy Solar and Electrical Systems, Inc of Sebastopol, California has achieved NABCEP Company Accreditation. To earn this accreditation the PV installation company had to undergo a thorough and rigorous application and review process that included the submission of procedures and policies and an independent, third party inspections of previously installed systems. The core elements of NABCEP Company Accreditation include: employment of NABCEP certified installation and technical sales personnel, documented and consistent policies and programs as they relate to the operations of the company, ongoing worker training program(s), and a strong focus on worker safety.

Richard Lawrence, Executive Director of NABCEP, says; “Earning the NABCEP Company Accreditation is a major accomplishment for Synergy Solar and Electrical Systems, Inc. In order to achieve this accreditation they had to demonstrate a company-wide commitment to quality assurance throughout the sales, installation, and after-sale process.” He continues, “Our entire organization congratulates the team at Synergy Solar and Electrical Systems, Inc. They were a pleasure to work with during the application process and we were especially impressed with the results of the third-party inspections of their PV systems where they obtained a perfect score.”

Synergy Solar and Electrical Systems co-owners are thrilled about achieving NABCEP Company Accreditation. Jeff Mathias, CFO, states, “The NABCEP accreditation process really has made us look at our internal practices and how they affect the company, the employees and our customers.  We have had good policies and programs in place and this process with NABCEP has made them better and more integrated. ”

Synergy’s COO, Michael Pane continues, “Getting a perfect score on the site audits is very rewarding to us.  We strive to install our systems using industry best practices.  Having third party inspections acknowledge our standard of excellence is validation that we are achieving our goals.”  Both Mathias and Pane agree that, “NABCEP company accreditation fits perfectly with our strategy to have 100% of our clients as references and employ the highest trained team in the industry.”

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About NABCEP: The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) is the most respected, well-established, and widely recognized national certification organization for professional installers in the field of renewable energy. NABCEP is a volunteer board of representatives who are chosen based on their experience and involvement in the solar energy industry. NABCEP’s mission is to develop and implement quality credentialing and certification programs for practitioners by supporting and working closely with professionals and stakeholders in the renewable energy and energy efficiency industries. To learn more visit http://www.nabcep.org/.

About Synergy Solar and Electrical Systems, Inc: Synergy Solar & Electrical System Inc. is a Sebastopol, CA based solar company serving all of Sonoma County for the past 20 years. Synergy specializes in Solar PV (on-grid and off-grid), and back-up systems (generators and batteries). Synergy values their employees and believes employee training is a pivotal part of installation quality.  In 2012 Synergy had a 100% customer satisfaction score for installation quality and a 98% score for overall customer satisfaction. 85% of Synergy’s new clients come from referrals, reflecting the philosophy that “our clients are our best sales force.” To learn more visit http://www.synsolar.com/.

January 30, 2013

NABCEP Announces Executive Director Retirement

Filed under: News — Richard Lawrence @ 12:34 pm

Clifton Park, N.Y.

January 30, 2013

The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) announced today that co-founder and current Executive Director, Ezra Auerbach, is stepping down effective January 31, 2013. The organization has named Richard Lawrence, currently the Director of Operations, to the post of Executive Director.

Don Warfield, Chairperson of NABCEP says, “NABCEP will miss Mr. Auerbach and thanks him for his efforts over the years. We are confident that the staff he has assembled during his tenure as ED will be more than capable of continuing to execute NABCEP’s mission to develop and deliver quality credentialing programs for the renewable energy industry.”

Mr. Auerbach says, “It has been a huge privilege to have been able to help NABCEP become the industry ‘Gold Standard’ for installation and sales professional certifications. I thank all my colleagues for this opportunity. While it saddens me to leave NABCEP, I am thrilled to be opening a new chapter in my life, which will afford me the opportunity to spend considerably more time at home and in our garden. I intend to remain involved the PV industry and look forward to seeing the many friends that I have made during my years at NABCEP at industry events.”

Richard Lawrence, says, “I am honored to have been provided the helm of such a prestigious organization. I look forward to working with NABCEP’s staff, our esteemed Board of Directors, and the dozens of industry experts that we rely on to create and maintain the high standards for which we have become known. ”

Mr. Warfield says, “For so many of us, Ezra’s name and face have come to mean NABCEP over the last decade and we are grateful for all he’s done for the organization. I’ve reluctantly come to accept his decision to leave NABCEP as he moves toward his retirement. I think that one of his most enduring contributions to our organization is the staff team that he has built over the past few years. Please join me in welcoming Richard Lawrence as Executive Director of NABCEP. Ezra is leaving us in good hands.”

December 19, 2012

Changes to PV Installer Certification

Filed under: News — nabcep @ 11:43 am

The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) has voted to implement changes to its PV Installer Certification. The changes that the Board approved this week include:

  • A name change of the certification to NABCEP Certified PV Installation Professional;
  • Revised language to the introduction, scope statement, the job description in the Job Task Analysis (JTA); and,
  • Changes to the eligibility criteria.

These changes reflect the evolution of the PV Installation industry along with the evolution of installation related careers and allow wider range of PV Installation professionals to attain and maintain certification. Click on these links for a full text of all the changes to the NABCEP Certified PV Installation Professional JTA Changes and NABCEP Certified PV Installation Professional Eligibility Requirements .

Ezra Auerbach, NABCEP’s Executive Director, notes, “The heart of the JTA which are the tasks, criticality ratings and exam blueprint remain unchanged. Our extensive public input gathering process clearly indicated that multiple individuals with decision making roles in the installation process all use the full range of knowledge that is delineated in the JTA and tested on the certification exam.” He continues, “The changes will not affect the certification status of individuals who already hold the PV Installer Certification. Their certification number will remain the same and they will continue to be listed on the NABCEP website.”

NABCEP Chairperson, Don Warfield states, “One thing that we want to make very clear is that the NABCEP PV Installation Professional Certification will remain as rigorous, meaningful and difficult to attain as ever before. In order to be successful on the exam all candidates will need to be fully conversant in all aspects of all the duties described in the Job Task Analysis. Our organization prides itself on offering certifications that are based on experience, training and testing and on that basis will not change.”

The eligibility criteria for the certification examination and recertification will expand to include individuals who fulfill job duties, which include but are not limited to: installer, designer, project manager, quality assurance and commissioning specialist or superintendent. The common element across the range is that candidate or recertification applicant must document that they preform a job role that involves making decisions that materially affect the outcome of the quality and serviceability of the installation. The revised eligibility criteria will become effective on February 2, 2013.

 

November 8, 2012

NABCEP Invites Stakeholder Input to Proposed Changes to PV Installer Certification Program

Filed under: News — Richard Lawrence @ 9:53 am

NABCEP is seeking public comments on proposed changes to its flagship PV Installer certification program. The proposed changes are intended to better align the certification name, job description and eligibility criteria with the PV industry. NABCEP Chairperson, Don Warfield states, “The PV industry has grown enormously in the past decade. Similarly, the installation segment of our industry has grown and evolved as well. As a consequence of this evolution there are often multiple people on a given job site who make decisions that have a material effect on the quality and serviceability of the installation. Our original model of a single person being ‘in charge’ is no longer reflective of a significant number of PV installations” The proposed changes include a name change of the certification to NABCEP Certified Installation Professional, changes to the introduction, scope statement and, notably, to the job description in the Job Task Analysis (JTA) and the eligibility criteria.

The changes are summarized in the following paragraph taken from the proposed introductory text of the JTA:

NABCEP Certified PV Installation Professionals work in a variety of responsible roles on PV installation jobs. He or she fulfills a decision-making role that helps ensure the quality and serviceability of the PV installation. The scope of the JTA is such that Certified PV Installation Professionals fill a wide range of job positions within the industry, taking responsibility for installations of varying size and complexity. As such, the scope of their duties may vary considerably. Due to the range of responsibilities and skills that may fall within the scope of a NABCEP Certified PV Installation Professional’s job duties, this Job Task Analysis is very broad in scope: not all certificants will perform all the tasks described herein.

The eligibility criteria for the certification examination will expand to include individuals who fulfill job duties including but not limited to: designer, project manager or superintendent. NABCEP Executive Director, Ezra Auerbach says, “A person whose job role involves making decisions that affect the outcome of the installation will be considered for eligibility providing that they can document the requisite training and experience.”

Auerbach notes, “It is essential to understand that these changes will not alter the content areas of JTA or exam for the certification. The same topic areas will be covered, and the exam will retain the same level of difficulty. We also want to assure those who have achieved the PV Installer Certification that these proposed changes will not affect their status as NABCEP certificants.” Once the proposed changes are finalized, all currently certified individuals will be designated as NABCEP Certified PV Installation Professionals.

Full text of all the proposed changes to the JTA and Eligibility Requirements. Please note that you may want to open these documents and have them available while you answer the survey (below).

Please complete the survey to provide your views on the proposed changes. Click here to take survey.

All comments must be submitted by midnight on Sunday, December 9, 2012. Thank you in advance for taking the time to submit your thoughts and suggestions.

October 17, 2012

Continuing Education Conference Registration Now Open

Filed under: News — Richard Lawrence @ 12:12 pm

October 16, 2012, Clifton Park, NY Registration is now open for the second annual NABCEP Continuing Education conference, which will be held from Friday, March 8 through March 10, 2013 at California State University Sacramento. The campus is home to the California Smart Grid Center. The conference will be open to NABCEP Certified Installers and Technical Sales Professionals and will provide an opportunity to fulfill all CE requirements for re-certification at a single event.

The following companies will present technical training on products and solutions: Ameresco; Burndy LLC; Enphase Energy; Magnum Energy; Morningstar Corporation; Power-One; Quick Mount PV; Schletter; Schneider Electric; SMA; Solar Edge; SolarWorld; Solectria Renewables; Rolls Battery Engineering; and Zep Solar.

Sessions on topics ranging from: the 2011 NEC (Ryan Mayfield); Changes to the 2014 NEC (Ward Bower); economics of PV (Andy Black); Roofing for Non-roofers (Tony Diaz); and Job safety (SEIA Safety Committee members) will be presented during the conference. CE credits will be offered for each of these special presentations.

NABCEP welcomes SMA America as the lead sponsor of this year’s conference. The other major sponsors of this event are: Intersolar, Schneider Electric, SolarWorld, Rolls Battery Engineering and Solar Pro Magazine.

For more information visit: http://www.nabcep.org/ce-conference-2013.

September 18, 2012

NABCEP Announces First Accredited Company

Filed under: News — Richard Lawrence @ 12:08 pm

Clifton Park, NY, September 4, 2012 – NABCEP

The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) is very pleased to announce that Renova Energy Corp of Palm Desert, California is the first NABCEP Accredited PV Installation Company. To earn this accreditation the company had to undergo a thorough and rigorous application process that included both a written application and an independent, third party inspections of previously installed systems. The core elements of NABCEP Company Accreditation include: employment of NABCEP certified installation and technical sales personnel, documented and consistent policies and programs as they relate to the operations of the company, ongoing worker training program(s), and a strong focus on worker safety.

Ezra Auerbach, Executive Director of NABCEP, says; “Earning the NABCEP Company Accreditation is a major accomplishment for Renova Energy Corp. In order to achieve this accreditation they had to demonstrate a company wide commitment to quality assurance throughout the sales, installation, and after-sale process.” He continues; “Our entire organization congratulates the team at Renova Energy Corp. They were a pleasure to work with during the application process and we were especially impressed with the results of the third-party inspections of their PV systems where they obtained a close to perfect score.”

Vincent Battaglia, CEO and President of Renova Energy Corp reports, “It is an immense honor as well as a great responsibility for Renova to be the first company to achieve NABCEP Company Accreditation. We feel strongly that this accreditation is needed as a cornerstone standard for consumers, end users, financiers, manufacturers and believers of solar. We are proud and excited to be the first company to achieve this accreditation.”

NABCEP’s Chairperson, Don Warfield, says, “This program an important step for NABCEP, we hold consumer protection as one of our core values. Renova Energy Corp has shown that it shares these values by making the effort to attain Company Accreditation. I look forward to many more companies following suit and joining them in the ranks of NABCEP Accredited PV Installation companies.”

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About NABCEP: The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) is the most respected, well established, and widely recognized national certification organization for professional installers in the field of renewable energy. NABCEP is a volunteer board of representatives who are chosen based on their experience and involvement in the solar energy industry. NABCEP’s mission is to develop and implement quality credentialing and certification programs for practitioners by supporting and working closely with professionals and stakeholders in the renewable energy and energy efficiency industries. To learn more visit http://www.nabcep.org/.

About Renova Energy Corp (Renova Solar): The company was established in 2006 in Palm Desert, CA when founders Vincent Battaglia and Thomas Hall merged companies with the goal of incorporating solar into buildings and homes for a long-term, efficient and clean, renewable energy supply solution.  Now the largest solar integration company in the Coachella Valley, their business thrives through constant referrals from clients who continue to work with them through RenovaPLUS – the region’s only professional solar maintenance service.  To learn more visit www.renovasolar.com or toll free 1 (877) 34-SOLAR.

 

August 17, 2012

NABCEP Announces 2013 Exam Dates

Filed under: News — Richard Lawrence @ 10:35 am

Clifton Park, NY, August 18, 2012 – NABCEP

The Board of Directors of the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) announces 2013 examination and application deadline dates for all of its Certification Exams. The exams will be administered on April 20, 2013 and October 19, 2013. Application deadline dates are February 1, 2013 and August 2, 2013.

NABCEP also announces that the PV Technical Sales Exam will no longer be administered in computer based format (CBT) and will, instead, be administered in a paper and pencil format at the same time as other Certification Exams. Responding to the increasing costs of computer based testing, Ezra Auerbach, Executive Director for NABCEP says; “We did not want to raise our fees, and scheduling PV Technical Sales along with the other certification exams provided us with the opportunity to hold fees steady. We are confident that the additional efficiency will allow us to maintain the existing exam cost structure in an environment where testing costs are rising.”

The NABCEP Board of Directors also made a minor change to the eligibility requirements for the Certified PV Installer exam. The requirement that “At least 50% (fifty percent) of the submitted systems must have an inverter rated 2 kWAC or greater continuous” has been removed. The revised eligibility makes no reference to system size. The requirement that “All systems submitted must have a minimum rating of 1 kW DC (STC)” remains in place.

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