A new chapter: The Construction Industry Collective Voice convenes its first in-person meeting

A new chapter: The Construction Industry Collective Voice convenes its first in-person meeting

After four years of virtual collaboration, the Construction Industry Collective Voice (CICV) convened its inaugural in-person meeting in Edinburgh in April, bringing together representatives from many of its 29 member organisations for the first time.

Alan Wilson, Chair of the CICV, opened the meeting by reflecting on the organisation’s evolution and its continuing commitment to Scotland’s construction industry, stating,

The CICV, born out of necessity during the pandemic, has become a beacon of collaboration. As we meet face-to-face for the first time, we reaffirm our commitment and strengthen our dedication to building on our foundation of unity and resilience.

Ivan McKee MSP, a longtime supporter of the CICV, also provided opening remarks that highlighted the forum’s significant impact on the industry. He praised the CICV’s role in representing a diverse range of sectors and professions and its influence on shaping industry standards and practices that resonate within both governmental and public realms.

The meeting itself focused on outlining the CICV’s strategic future and reinforcing its role as a principal advocate for the construction industry. Discussions included updates on the Construction Accord’s Transformation Plan, and how CICV members’ invaluable insights and expertise are being applied across its various working groups.

Following the meeting, Fiona Hodgson, Deputy Chair of the CICV, reflected on its outcomes, saying,

In an evolving construction landscape, the CICV’s role has become more crucial than ever. Today’s discussion not only reaffirmed our commitment to collective action and strategic foresight but also underscored our leadership in advocating for innovation and resilience within the construction industry.

Establishing the Building Safety Regime

Establishing the Building Safety Regime

Build UK has recently updated its guide to the Building Safety Regime to include all the information published in connection with the latest phase of the regime from 6 April.

The April 2024 version includes the new registers for Building Control Approvers and Building Inspectors and updates to Approved Document B, including guidance for second staircases in new residential buildings above 18 metres in height. Build UK has also produced an overview of the Golden Thread which is available to FIS members, summarising the new requirement to collate and store information for Higher‐Risk Buildings (HRBs), and the timeline shows at a glance when all the key changes take effect.

Homes England has launched the Building Remediation Hub which allows applications for the Building Safety Fund and the Cladding Safety Scheme to be processed via a single portal. The Building Safety Fund covers the replacement of unsafe non‐ACM cladding systems on residential buildings 18 metres and over in height in London, whilst the Cladding Safety Scheme funds the replacement of unsafe cladding systems on residential buildings over 11 metres (11 ‐ 18 metres in London).

Following publication of the fourth report by the Industry Safety Steering Group, Chair Dame Judith Hackitt has released a blog reflecting on the ‘huge progress’ to date and urging the industry to continue to work together to ensure the new regime is a success. The Grenfell Tower Inquiry has confirmed that publication of its Phase 2 report has been delayed and will now be published after the next anniversary of the fire in June.

Source: Build UK

Get to grips with the Building Safety Act with the new FIS E’Learning Course: An Introduction to the Building Safety Act

The role of construction products in building safety

The role of construction products in building safety

The Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS), the UK’s regulator for construction products, has organised a webinar to help industry better understand the Building Safety Act and the role of the OPSS.

The webinar, scheduled for 10am – 12noon on 22 April, will be chaired by Peter Caplehorn, CEO of the CPA and co-chair of the CLC’s Building Safety workstream, and includes Louise Barr, Deputy Director Construction Products DLUHC, Duncan Johnson, Deputy Director Construction Products OPSS, and Adam Turk, CEO of Siderise and future Chair of the CPA.

To register for the free event, please follow this link.

FIS launches new e-learning course to help members get to grips with new regulatory regime

FIS launches new e-learning course to help members get to grips with new regulatory regime

The Building Safety Act (BSA) is the most significant piece of new legislation for construction in a generation. It will fundamentally change the way in which buildings are designed, constructed and maintained.  It heralds a new regulator, regulates for competence, adds additional rigour to enforcement, calls for more detailed records to be kept of what was built, by whom and how and introduces compliance Gateways for Higher Risk Buildings.

Whilst the Act itself was introduced in 2022, the 6 April 2024 marked the end of the transitional periods and the new regime is now fully in force.   This includes amendments to the core Building Regulations and a suite of new secondary legislation with new defined responsibilities for all working on the design and construction of buildings, new regulatory procedures and enforcement powers and tighter processes (the Gateways) for Higher Risk Buildings.

In the first operating week FIS has launched a new online training course designed to introduce the basic concepts of the Building Safety Act and support individuals working in the finishes and interiors sector understand the implications of these changes on them. Members have access to this course, which has been designed to be user-friendly and guide members through the new compliance landscape.  The course is divided into nine chapters:

  1. An overview of the Building Safety Act 2022
  2. What is a Higher Risk Building and when does work fall under the stricter regime?
  3. An introduction to Gateways and new expectations
  4. PEOPLE: Duty Holders and Competence Management Plans
  5. PROCESS: Change Control and Mandatory Occurrence Reporting
  6. PRODUCT: Safety Critical Products and Evidencing Performance
  7. Managing the Golden Thread
  8. Defective Premises Act and other Sanctions
  9. Summary and Recommended Actions

It includes with an end test and FIS will issue CPD certificates to those completing the course (and passing the test).  Learners can learn at their own pace and FIS is on hand to answer any questions that arise.

Commenting on the launch of the course, FIS CEO Iain McIlwee stated:

“This is a really important new chapter for our industry and we hope that this course helps members turn the page effectively.  The advantage of delivering it in this way is that the content is agile and we can evolve as we learn more about the regulations are being applied in the real world.  There remains some uncertainty and undoubtedly there will be some challenges as the rubber hits the road and the new enforcement regime beds in.  As well as encouraging members to take the course we are inviting feedback and hopefully it will generate a wave of questions that we can help clarify and/or work to find the answers with the regulator.”

Members can register for the course here.

Common Assessment Standard to be used across the public sector

Common Assessment Standard to be used across the public sector

The Cabinet Office has published Procurement Policy Note 03/24 which removes reference to PAS 91 meaning the Common Assessment Standard should now be used across the public sector. Following the withdrawal of PAS 91 by BSI last year, central Government departments and wider public sector bodies can only use the Common Assessment Standard for pre‐qualifying suppliers for construction works contracts. The changes to the PPN must be implemented by contracting authorities within three months, and it is another significant step forward for the Common Assessment Standard, which will help to reduce duplication for the supply chain whilst streamlining public sector procurement.

The Common Assessment Standard has reached a tipping point over the last 12 months, with a growing list of contractors and clients specifying it and more than 18,500 companies certified against it by five Recognised Assessment Bodies. It is also being updated to ensure it can be used to demonstrate companies have the organisational capability to fulfil their roles under the Building Safety Act.

Are you interested in taking on an apprentice, but unsure where to start?

Are you interested in taking on an apprentice, but unsure where to start?

CITB has set up a ‘New Entrant Support Team’ to assist registered members with taking on Apprentices and new entrants from inception to completion and will cover

The team will signpost you to useful employment resources and help advertise your apprenticeship vacancy on Talentview to attract potential candidates and let them find you – all for free, helping you get the right apprentice.

CITB Funding
The team will ensire you’re set up to receive CITB apprenticeship grants:
• Attendance grant: £2,500 (per year, per apprentice)
• Achievement grant: £3,500 (on successful completion of the apprenticeship).

Admin/paperwork (including Government Funding)
You will receive help with the paperwork, liaising with the training provider, setting up your Government Digital Account and more so you can focus on the job.

The team will keep in touch to make sure you have the support you need to help your apprentice achieve and become a fully-fledged employee on completion.

More information is available here.