Post Occupancy Evaluation


Buildings are judged by many stakeholders in many ways that result in diverse descriptions of them. Managers need to know that stakeholders‘ experience of buildings supports productivity and well being to ensure that project teams are responsive and delivering the optimum buildings.


Productivity, well being, recruitment and retention are typical aims for new building programs. Managers need concise yet comprehensive feedback about stakeholders’ observations of the ways which buildings support productivity and well being.


Post Occupancy Evaluation is the architectural process of documenting all stakeholders experiences of buildings features and qualities to identify any potential improvements in design of the next building, fine tuning or adjustments in ways buildings are used. The process “negotiates” 3 dimensions of building evaluation, namely; design, use and conditions.

“Roll-outs” of series of similar building projects have Post Occupancy Evaluation to confirm predictions of use and design suitability, and explore any possible improvements in building design.

Single building evaluations inform design features’ suitability and identify any possible need for fine tuning of occupancy practices and/or design features. Evaluations of buildings dating back to 1870 have informed planning for refurbishment and alterations.


Typical evaluations involve touring interviews with focus groups representing employees, clients and other stakeholders. Stakeholders are prompted to make testable observations about the buildings’ effects on productivity and well being, which are documented to form the basis of recommendations. Occasionally, participatory workshops, observation studies, post occupancy surveys and energy analysis are also applied.


Experience includes 170 architectural evaluations of offices, schools, universities, polytechnics, medical, museums, courts, police stations, apartments, houses and military and retail facilities in Australasia and Europe.


New buildings are often evaluated about a year after occupancy and recommendations delivered with justifications within a few weeks.