Standards Australia’s NEXTgen Program provides emerging industry and technical experts with the opportunity to become involved in national and international standardisation processes.
Throughout the program, participants are provided with training, mentoring and direct exposure to the standards development process and context.
Nominating Organisations (Nom Orgs’) are organisations that nominate representatives to participate in technical committees. They may include, government bodies, industry associations, community-based and consumer organisations, employee organisations and professional, technical or trade associations.
Nom Orgs’ can be major, Australia-wide organisations, federal or state government departments, or small organisations with a specific focus.
On Thursday 18th November, participants of the 2021 NEXTgen program were invited to a panel interview to learn what is means to be a representative, how to be appointed, and what is expected of representatives.
Facilitated by Kim Suter from Standards Australia, attendees heard from:
- Annette Hoskin, Global Standardisation Manager, Essilor International.
- James Thomson, Senior Adviser Standards and Regulation with Ai Group.
During the session, Annette and James discussed their Nom Orgs’ recruitment process including how they attracted new representatives, the skills required, desired experience and how individuals can put their hands up to get involved.
In addition, they discussed how important standards are to varying industries, the integrity of work in the Australian market, and to everyday Australians.
Also discussed were the challenges in finding interested members, including identifying people who would be a good fit for committees and who would be willing to commit to regular updates with open channels of communications. Annette and James expressed that, while knowledge and expertise are important, they were more likely to engage with people who demonstrate a willingness to get involved and have a strong passion for the subject matter.
They found communication to be of utmost importance, as with any collaborative exercise, committees are made up with people who have differing communication styles. It's vital that any miscommunication is avoided so as not to impact the standards development process.
Annette and James also explained they sometimes see younger people discount themselves due to a lack of knowledge, and that this shouldn’t be the case. They understood that it can be intimidating getting involved in the standards process, but different opinions and perspectives are vital to secure the best outcomes for the Australian community.
The session reinforced how the NEXTgen program benefits participants by developing a knowledge of the standards development process, increasing confidence, networking opportunities and building important relationships.
"The NEXTgen program strives to provide participants with a holistic learning experience which includes access to key roles involved with standards development, both within Standards Australia and beyond. The Nominating Organisations panel is a great example of this, providing participants with exposure to respected industry professionals which may not otherwise be possible. I would like to thank Annette and James for volunteering their time and offering their valuable insights today, which has further deepened the level of understanding for our NEXTgen participants," said Kim Suter, Learning and Development Specialist at Standards Australia.
To learn more about the NEXTgen program or register interest in the 2022 activity, please visit NEXTgen | Standards Australia.