For the commissioning of production plants, the virtual commissioning (VCOM) method has proven to accelerate the overall commissioning time by increasing the software quality of the plant controller. VCOM is carried out in advance of the commissioning of the real plant, using a simulated plant. However, the hard transition from the simulated to the real plant proves to be problematic if components of the real plant are not available. In these cases the hybrid commissioning (HCOM) method, a hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) simulation setup including both real and simulated components, is desirable. In this article, the disadvantages of a hard transition of VCOM, the concept of the HCOM and it's benefits for commissioning production plants are explained and discussed. Also, an evaluation of an implementation is briefly presented.