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GGP 04 Apr 2016

Nearly 60% of SME construction owners started their career as an apprentice, according to new research from the Federation of Master Builders (FMB). The research also shows that more than half of those bosses were running their own company within just seven years of completing their apprenticeship training, and that 98% of construction SME owners value an apprenticeship over a degree when looking for new staff. Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB, said: “The construction industry is ideally suited to a young person with heaps of ambition and an entrepreneurial spirit. Our research demonstrates that a construction apprenticeship is the perfect springboard for a successful and rewarding career, with more than half of construction SMEs being run by people who started out as an apprentice. Of those who 6 NEWS Installers legally obliged to provide alternative dispute resolution Providing Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) – or arbitration – became UK law from 1 October 2015 for all businesses that sell to consumers. For the glazing sector, this means that where an installer has exhausted its Complaints Procedure and the matter remains in dispute, it is legally compelled to give the consumer the contact details of an approved glazing sector ADR service to progress the complaint to arbitration. One solution is to opt in to FENSA’s arrangement with The Glazing Arbitration Scheme (TGAS), which is an approved glazing sector Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) service. These services to FENSA certified installers started from 1 January 2016. This is part of the new FENSA ‘package’ and registration with TGAS is free. Other providers are available. Under TGAS, any decision on matters relating to Building Regulations compliance will not form part of any arbitration. TGAS charges consumers £100 to take a complaint to arbitration. This is to encourage only justified complaints and avoid any frivolous or vexatious complaints and protect installers from unjustified costs and administration time. The costs for an installer to go through the arbitration process starts at £395 (ex VAT) per complaint. Where an installation company has opted in to be a member of TGAS, then they are to proceed to arbitration when a consumer takes their complaint to TGAS after at least 56 days have elapsed since the complaint was raised with FENSA and there is still an unresolved dispute. As part of the rules of TGAS arbitration the company and the consumer will be bound by the arbitration decision. The use of ADR arbitration services costs far less and takes less time to resolve than going through the Courts. If a window installer decides not opt in to TGAS, they must alternatively comply with their legal obligation to give the consumer the contact details of an alternative approved glazing sector ADR service when there is an unresolved complaint, and at that time they must inform the consumer whether or not they are prepared to use that ADR service. “Free registration with TGAS provides FENSA installers with the fastest way to comply with these new consumer laws,” commented Chris Mayne, FENSA managing director. “Though we do not predict that our installers will have to make heavy use of this service – the new law does state that these arrangements have to be in place.” TGAS is operated independently by a Trading Standards Institute Certified ADR body, the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR). AluK launches new design studio www.ggpmag.com April 2016 60% of SME bosses start as apprenctice went on to start their own businesses, more than one in two reached that goal within a mere seven years of completing their apprenticeship training, showing that you can go from being a brickie to a business owner in no time at all.” Berry continued: “Even if running your own firm isn’t what you aspire to do, a construction apprenticeship can nevertheless provide the foundation for a highly rewarding career. What’s more, by the age of 23, a bricklayer with five years' experience can earn up to £31,000 and rising in some cases to £52,000 in London. Given the high levels of university tuition fees, young people have every reason to properly consider a more vocational education and pursuing a career in construction looks an increasingly shrewd move.” AluK (GB) has announced the launch of the AluK Design Studio in the City of London. Its new design and product demonstration space opens to the public in April, as the company continues to grow in the UK and develop its prominence within the aluminium building systems sector. AluK says that its Design Studio, which houses 7m high curtain walling displays and many other full size aluminium window and door systems, will enable its customers to interact with AluK products and discuss design and installation with a team of architectural project managers and engineers. Their aim is to help customers to visualise AluK products in situ and support design decisions before specification. A range of new products will be on display at the studio, giving visitors a first look at the latest innovations in aluminium curtain walling, window and door systems. Graham Hurrell, commercial director, AluK, commented: “The AluK Design Studio will be a multifunctional space where exceptional and bespoke technical projects are planned and designed. Our architectural project managers will use the area to discuss individual project needs with customers and prospects. We believe we are the first designer and engineer of aluminium building systems to operate such a facility in a City of London location, providing our customers with an easily accessible space to bring their clients to interact with the newest and most popular AluK systems.” “In the spirit of collaboration, our meeting spaces and AluK resources will be available for use by architects, specifiers, contractors, designers, builders, educational bodies and other visitors to the studio. Furthermore, we plan to host open CPDs, seminars and other events in the studio, which we will advertise in due course.” By having its architectural project managers, designers and technical teams working from a central London location, AluK says it will be able to further differentiate its commercial offer, support its architectural customers and achieve further growth in the UK market. The new studio will also act as an international meeting area for the AluK Group which operates across the EMEA region and Asia. Brian Berry


GGP 04 Apr 2016
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