Whether people realize it or not, how they use energy creates patterns. Measuring those patterns in buildings opens the door to finding efficiencies and savings.

Analytics software from Agilis Energy offers that insight into that energy use. The Raleigh company will now get the chance analyze energy use in buildings throughout North America through a new partnership with heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) provider Trane. The exclusive agreement calls for Trane to use Agilis’ analytics technology and software with its own offering for commercial and industrial building customers in North America. It’s one thing to measure energy use. But Agilis’ software gives you the ability to visually see the patterns of use.

“Our tool delivers 3D, MRI-style dynamic images and other advanced analytics that allow for identification and quantification of real and near term solutions,” Joseph Hirl, chief executive and chief technology officer for Agilis, said in a statement.

While the agreement was just announced this month, both companies have already been working together for the past year pairing Agilis’ energy analytics technology with Trane’s offering to give Trane better insight about the historical energy usage of office buildings, schools, municipal facilities, hospitals and manufacturers.

It’s here that big data enters the picture. “Smart meters” at the buildings provide detailed information about energy use. The software compares a building’s performance against data collected from meters across the country to identify areas of poor energy performance in buildings. With that information in hand, Trane can work with building owners to make their buildings more energy efficient.

Agilis, which is self funded, started developing its patent-pending analytics software in 2009. The company says it can save customers between 10 and 25 percent annually on their energy bills with no capital investment. So far, Agilis says its technology has been used in more than 1,000 buildings across North America and Europe serving 275 customers.

Trane, a subsidiary of Ingersoll Rand (NYSE:IR),provides HVAC services across the world. Though the Agilis deal only covers North America, it should still get Agilis into a lot more buildings.