The ISSA Cleaning Industry Management Standard-Green Building (CIMS-GB)—a certification program that provides third-party verification for cleaning operations—is now a direct option to meet the green cleaning policy prerequisite of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) revised Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design for Existing Buildings: Operations and Maintenance (LEED-EBOM) rating system. 

CIMS certification is administered by ISSA, the leading trade association for the cleaning industry worldwide, and one of the ways ISSA is working to change the way the world views cleaning. There are 184 CIMS-certified organizations in the United States, more than 150 of which are CIMS-GB certified.

 “The inclusion of CIMS-GB in the newest version of LEED: EBOM [v4] is clear recognition that ISSA’s program has earned the respect of the building operations, facility management, and sustainability industries,” said ISSA Director of Facility Service Programs Dan Wagner.

“CIMS-GB certified organizations are subject to a rigorous third-party assessment, which provides end customers with assurance that their cleaning service provider is committed to effective management and customer satisfaction and prepared to partner with them in the LEED-certification process,” continued Wagner. “Inclusion in the final version allows companies with CIMS-GB certification to directly assist customers in earning credits toward LEED recognition.”

In this new version, using a CIMS-GB certified cleaning service provider is specified as one way a facility can demonstrate compliance with the Indoor Environmental Quality Prerequisite for green cleaning. To take advantage of the CIMS-GB option, a facility will have to be cleaned by a certified organization and audited by an approved assessor within the past 12 months.  In other words, facilities seeking LEED: EBOM certification will have the option of developing and implementing a comprehensive green cleaning program or simply using a CIMS-GB certified provider.

Wagner said the inclusion of CIMS-GB in the rating systems is good news for facility services providers: “This is going to streamline the LEED-EBOM process and make it easier for organizations to help their customers meet the requirements.”

Existing LEED 2009 projects can continue to register under that version of the rating system through June 2015. After that, LEED v4 will be required.

For more information about CIMS and CIMS-GB, visit