Over the course of our work, we encounter a wide number of companies and organizations aiming to comply with sustainability standards and achieve certifications. These standards and certifications can help building owners and managers elevate the momentum of the healthy building movement and show that their properties are safer, healthier, and more sustainable than non-certified built environments.
The WELL Certification is one of the building standards that is commonly used within the commercial real estate industry. With its high demand and popularity, many projects are seeking more knowledge about the WELL Building Standard®, its requirements, and the process to take. This article will provide a quick yet comprehensive overview of the WELL Building Standard® and how uHoo Aura can be used to earn scores for your WELL project.
What is WELL Certification?
The WELL certification is a performance-based building standard to measure, certify, and monitor certain building features that highly impact human health, safety, and wellbeing. The WELL Building Standard® is managed by the International WELL Building Institute or IWBI, an organization that aims to transform and improve health in built environments, communities, and organizations globally.
WELL had its first version which was organized into seven categories: Air, Water, Nourishment, Light, Fitness, Comfort and Mind. In 2020, WELL expanded the categories (WELL v2™) which is more comprehensive and focuses on concepts including:
- Thermal comfort
How does WELL Certification Work?
The WELL Building Standard® provides three basic levels in which a building project can be verified. These levels are performance ratings, certifications, and WELL at scale.
Performance ratings are health achievements in specific areas such as heath, safety, performance, and equity. This can be earned as a standalone designation or as an avenue towards single building certification.
Certification covers all of the ten categories of WELL and has more stringent requirements. Certification has various levels such as bronze, silver, gold, and platinum.
WELL at scale is the most efficient way to improve their health efforts across multiple locations at once. WELL at Scale subscribers gain access to everything that WELL offers including unlimited certifications and ratings, concierge technical service and strategic ESG and market support.
WELL Certification Process
To secure WELL, projects must first prepare and submit a project application. This application includes information about the property, its systems, and the intended use of the space. Once the application is reviewed and accepted, the project will be evaluated against the WELL standards. During this stage, project owners must expect on-site assessments, document reviews, and performance testing.
The entire WELL Certification process consists of the following steps:
Step 1: Pre-assessment
The building’s systems and features are evaluated to determine their readiness for WELL certification.
Step 2: On-site assessment
This is conducted to verify that the building meets the WELL standards. This process includes reviewing documentation, observations of building systems and features, and performance testing.
Step 3: Review and verification
A WELL Accredited Professional (WELL AP) evaluates and verifies the report after the on-site assessment.
Step 4: Certification
After the verification, the project will be certified as meeting the WELL standards.
Benefits of WELL Certification
- Businesses become more able to address employee burnout
- Creating a culture that considers mental health
- Nourishes workplace belongingness, diversity, inclusion, and equity
- Attracting and retaining top talents
- Improving employee engagement, productivity, and work performance
- Strengthens commitment to occupant health and safety
- Boosts the organization’s and the building’s brand value
How does uHoo Aura conforms to WELL Building Standard® Certification Requirements?
The uHoo Aura is fully equipped to meet a good number of requirements for the WELL Building Standard®. Take a look at the table enumerating the WELL Building Standard®’s certification requirements that are met by uHoo Aura’s features and capabilities.
|WELL Requirements||Features met by uHoo Aura|
|AO1: Air Quality (Precondition)||Part 1: Meet Thresholds For Particulate Matter
Part 2: Meet Thresholds For Organic Gasses
Part 3: Meet Thresholds For Inorganic Gasses
Part 5: Measure Air Parameters
|AO5: Enhanced Air Quality||Part 1: Meet Enhanced Thresholds For Particulate Matter(2 Points)
Part 2: Meet Enhanced Thresholds For Organic Gasses(1 Point)
Part 3: Meet Enhanced Thresholds For Inorganic Gasses(1 Point)
|AO8: Air Quality Monitoring and Awareness||Part 1: Install Indoor Air Monitors(1 Point)
Part 2: Promote Air Quality Awareness(1 Point)
|LO1: Light Exposure (Precondition)||Part 1: Provide Indoor Light|
|TO1: Thermal Comfort (Precondition)||Part 1: Provide Acceptable Thermal Environment|
|TO6: Thermal Comfort Monitoring||Part 1: Monitor Thermal Environment(1 Point)|
|TO7: Humidity Control||Part 1: Manage Relative Humidity(Max: 1 Point)|
|SO2: Maximum Noise Levels||Part 1: Limit Background Noise Levels(Max: 3 Points)|
|SO6: Minimum Background Sound||Part 1: Provide Minimum Background Sound(1 Point)
Part 2: Provide Enhanced Speech Reduction (1 Point)
|TOTAL POINTS||13 points + preconditions|
WELL also has an Innovation feature that allows building projects to propose innovations and earn 1 point each.
Ready to discover more about how uHoo Aura can help you become WELL-certified?