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Last edited 01 Feb 2020
Building Use Studies
Building Use Studies (BUS) is a methodology for evaluating occupant satisfaction that was developed in the 1980s for construction clients. The feedback generated is intended to help improve future quality and performance. By benchmarking occupant satisfaction levels against a large database of results for similar buildings, solutions can be created and decisions informed to improve occupant experience and optimise performance.
The BUS methodology consists of the following services:
- Surveys of building occupants.
- Post-occupancy evaluations.
- Briefs on strategic thinking and the future.
- Data management and analysis.
The benefits of BUS include:
- The worst aspects of common building problems that may affect occupants can be avoided or identified and tackled.
- By helping to understand future scenarios, obsolescence and poor flexibility can be minimised.
- It can help create buildings which are easier to manage and more user-friendly.
- It can assist with environmental performance and identify areas of improvement.
- It can help inform investment decisions.
The surveys take the form of a structured questionnaire which is designed to accumulate as much information as possible from as few questions as possible. Building occupants rate various performance-related aspects on a scale of 1-7. They can also provide written feedback.
Key variables are evaluated that cover aspects such as noise, space, thermal comfort, ventilation, indoor air quality, lighting, personal control, image and needs. Occupants of commercial buildings may be asked about how they perceive their productivity, and their travel to the building. Occupants of domestic buildings may be asked about their lifestyle and environmental issues.
The quantitative and qualitative data that is accumulated from the surveys is analysed by comparison with similar buildings already in the database. The non-domestic database has more than 850 buildings from around the world.
The BUS methodology allows the results to be interpreted and placed in context for the particular building. Summary results provide an ‘overview’ of the overall building performance, while more detailed results for each question are reported using statistical tables, graphs and charts.
You can find out more at: https://busmethodology.org.uk/index.html
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Appointing consultants.
- Building performance evaluation.
- Building performance metrics.
- Closing the gap between design and as-built performance.
- Energy audit.
- Performance of exemplar buildings in use: Bridging the performance gap FB 78.
- Performance in use.
- Post occupancy evaluation.
- Post occupancy evaluation process.
- Sick building syndrome.
- Thermal comfort.
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