It was a pleasure last week to hold our Mid-year Members Forum in Canberra - a great opportunity for us to provide an update on our work and transformation program.
Among the many issues raised, Members heard from our Chair and executive team about the commitment to continuous improvement in our core business of standards development; progress of our new standards development path and mobile app; and also our workstream for 2023-24.
The event was also a valuable opportunity to engage directly with stakeholders from 30 member organisations - a highlight was a panel session with our leaders facilitated by Louise McGrath, AIG's Head of Industry Development and Policy.
I enjoyed some great discussions on important topics such as our distribution and business programs - the members recognise the challenges our organisation faces and appreciated the openness and transparency, just as we appreciate their support, guidance and counsel.
We also announced the winners of the Standards Awards, which annually recognise and reward excellence in standardisation. The Awards are testament to the winners’ commitment and contribution to standards and the community, and this year's recipients represent a broad array of industries, from artificial intelligence and concrete structures to electrical safety.
The value of face-to-face events like these cannot be understated - there is no better way to update our members on our efforts to deliver greater value while also having genuine dialogue on critical issues, and I am looking forward to the next one.
Standards Awards 2023
Standards Australia has announced the winners for the 2023 Standards Awards.
The Awards recognise members of the Australian standards development community and reward those who make a positive impact and further the development of standards within Australia and internationally.
Webinar: revised gas installation standard
Join our webinar "What You Need to Know About the Revised Gas Installation Standard: Major Changes to AS/NZS 5601.1 2022 Gas Installations, Part 1: General Installations." This online event will provide professionals in the gas installation industry with important information on changes to the standard, which is a major revision of the 2013 edition.Led by Enzo Alfonsetti, Chair of Standards Australia's AG-006 committee, and the Gas Technical Regulators Committee, the webinar will cover important topics such as multi-layer piping, pipe sizing, commercial catering equipment, kitchen rangehood installation, gas installations in high-rise buildings, and new definitions contained in the standard. Register now for this webinar to get a better understanding of how to comply with safety requirements for the design, installation and commissioning of your gas installation projects.
Alternative standards development models - summary of feedback
Following on from the stakeholder consultation period, at its meeting on 04 May 2023, the Standards Development & Accreditation Committee (SDAC) endorsed the proposed changes in the Standardisation Guides which will take effect on 15 June 2023. For more information on webinars being held, click here.
Metaverse risks & consumer safety highlighted in new whitepaper
Standards Australia has launched its Metaverse and Standards Whitepaper, produced in collaboration with the Responsible Metaverse Alliance (RMA) which explores the opportunities and risks stemming from this new technology, and its potential impact on society and the economy.
Industry-first partnership delivers engineers better access to standards
Standards Australia and Australian engineering and structural design software, ClearCalcs, are partnering to make it easier for engineers to better access, understand and use relevant engineering standards in real-time.
NEXTgen Program 2023
Get ready to boost your career with Standards Australia's NEXTgen program!Nextgen is a free 10-month professional development experience that can upskill your CV, ignite your standards knowledge, and forge invaluable industry connections. Formal applications will open on the 13th June. Click here to register your interest for the 2023-24 intakeIf you have approximately 5 to 7 years industry experience, NEXTgen might be the program for you.
In Conversation with Michael Hanna
Michael Hanna is the chair of BD-092 (temporary edge protection) and an active member of BD-036 (scaffolding) and BD-043 (formwork) committees. With solid experience in all temporary works applications across the region's key projects, Michael has become a fellow member of Engineers Australia and a registered professional engineer in NSW, Victoria and Queensland. Michael is the Head of Engineering for PERI, the world's largest manufacturer of formwork and scaffolding equipment.
When did you first become involved in standards development?
I joined BD-036 in 2018, which focuses on scaffolding regulations. At that time, I was relatively new to the world of standards and had great support from all the committee members. My standards knowledge quickly developed, and I joined BD-092, focused on temporary edge protection and BD-043, which focuses on formwork.
The world of temporary works is fascinating and certainly challenges many aspects of engineering compared to permanent works. From the flexibility of the systems to the temporary nature, the design concepts often differ from what is typically taught in most engineering courses.
I often tell my team that we aim to speed up construction, but our ultimate goal is to ensure every person involved returns home safely to their family. This idea is key to ensuring everyone involved in temporary works understands the importance of following appropriate standards. This idea is also crucial to developing standards that everyone in the industry can easily understand and follow.
How do standards impact and interact with your industry?
There is a significant influence from standards on how the market operates. This statement is true for all the standards which have been recently updated to meet the current industry trends and demands. Nevertheless, some outdated standards have forced the market to introduce other documents (e.g. handbooks, minimum requirements, etc.) to use as an alternative to the outdated documents.
This is why our involvement and proactivity to update the standards is paramount to keep our documents current and ensure everything is clear within the industry.
Why is access to standards important?
In major construction activities throughout Australia, we see a strong reliance on skilled migration and many foreign construction companies working on Australian projects. These factors mean that we must ensure our standards are updated as necessary and can be accessible by everyone within the industry. Ease of access can be achieved by creating appropriate subscription models, commentary documents, handbooks and workshops to ensure everyone involved understands the requirements. Here I congratulate Standards Australia for the enormous work required to facilitate this.
What is the future of standardisation in your area of work?
Standardisation is crucial in the area of temporary works and we are striving to increase the industry's engagement by ensuring all related standards are updated to meet the industry's demands.
Some documents are yet to be updated (e.g., formwork and shoring) but, overall, I am confident we have the support and resources to correct these quickly and regain the industry's engagement with the standard.
IEC Young Professionals Program
The International Electrotechnical Commission is now accepting applications for the IEC Young Professionals (YP) Programme for 2023.
The IEC YP Programme is an opportunity for emerging leaders in energy and electrotechnology to further develop their skills on an international stage.
Participants will have the opportunity to meet technical experts from all over the world and see the IEC in action by attending the IEC YP Annual Workshop which will take place from 22nd October in Cairo, Egypt – alongside the IEC General Meeting.
Click here for more information on how to apply.
Standards Australia represents Australia on the two major international standards development bodies, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Our activities are reported on our International Updates page.
Click here to view our highlights from May (PDF):
• Specialty metals and minerals: new field of technical activity
• Integrated pest management (IPM) for crops: new field of technical activity
• Protecting privacy and security in JPEG image content and metadata
Drafts Open for Comment
Australian Standards for FRP bars
Standards Australia has drafted AS 5204, a proposed new standard for fibre-reinforced polymer (FRP) composite bars for public comment. AS 5204 has been developed to help ensure structural quality and meet design requirements.
The draft standard outlines criteria for acceptable materials and sets minimum physical, mechanical, and durability properties for FRP bars used for internal and non-prestressed reinforcing concrete in structures exposed to harsh environments. By incorporating data and best practices from Australia and abroad, the standard aims to enable responsible adoption of this alternative reinforcing material in Australia, particularly for safeguarding critical concrete structures in industries like marine and construction.
The public comment process provides an opportunity for stakeholders and members of the public to make valuable contributions. With the launch of our new public comment platform, draft standards currently open for comment are now available via Connect.