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Partners in compliance seminar – one day certification awareness seminar

County Hall, Wellington Square, Ayr on Thursday, 11th December 2014.

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The purpose of the Seminar is to raise awareness of certification and promote the compliance of building standards in Scotland through joint working between Local Authority Verifiers and the Certifiers. This seminar aims to provide a better insight into the actual schemes and the benefits to the compliance agenda. It will also give speakers and delegates the opportunity of sharing past and present experiences of the schemes.

All presentations will be delivered by key speakers from Local Authority Building Standards Scotland (LABSS), Building Standards Division (BSD) and our “Partners in Compliance” Scotland’s Certification Scheme Providers from, SER, SELECT, NICEIC, RIAS, SNIPEF and BRE.

Attendance at the Seminar is open to all those involved in Building Standards system in Scotland, be they designers, certifiers, verifiers, builders and Building Warrant service users.

To reserve a place at Ayr on 11th December 2014, please download and complete the booking form attached to the flyer & programme and return via email to: wightonj@stirling.gov.uk

Booking forms are also available from:

James Whiteford,
LABSS Administration Convener
Tel: 01835 826736
Email: jwhiteford@scotborders.gov.uk

National customer survey launched

We are pleased to confirm that the National Customer Survey has now been launched.

The Building Standards Division at the Scottish Government have commissioned a company called Pye Tait to undertake a customer satisfaction survey of all those who have used local authority building standards since 1 April 2013.

All service users, both as applicants and their agents, will contacted initially to determine if they wish to participate or would prefer to opt out.

The introductory guidance notes at the start of the survey will identify Pye Tait as the main point of contact in the event customers have any queries.

LABSS / LABC framework agreement

National building standards organisations announce formal link

LABSS (Local Authority Building Standards Scotland) and LABC (Local Authority Building Control in England and Wales) have made a formal agreement to join together on key activities.

Both LABSS and LABC pledge to work together to promote and provide:

  1. independent, public sector regulatory standards and practices that are used to ensure safe, efficient, sustainable, healthy and accessible buildings;
  2. research on best practice, technical development and support for innovation within the building industry and positive support of regulatory policy;
  3. practical help to customers - building professionals, manufacturers, developers, contractors, trades, communities and property owners.

By working together across these areas both organisations aim to influence policy at government level in Scotland, England and Wales and strengthen the case for public service ethos in building standards.

LABSS and LABC will also align and jointly deliver some services, to develop customer support, improve efficiency and consistency. To achieve this both organisations will create working groups to develop research, policies, technical guidance and improve customer relationship management. This cooperation will start with specific schemes and actions and be allowed to develop as additional activities or value added services are found to be relevant. Future developments will seek to include collaboration and sharing of resources between local authorities and improve technical functions by supporting “smarter working” to drive up local authority efficiency.

Welcoming the new agreement, LABC’s Chief Executive Paul Everall said: “We have an enormous amount in common, not just technical matters, but also through providing excellent services to our communities and to the construction industry. By working together we will have a larger research base and be able to share the development of new approaches to our work and to improving performance.”

Muir Somerville, Chair of LABSS, added: “It is a fact that we share customers and that major developers and house builders work across our national borders. This agreement to share information and to work together will give customers and industry a more efficient and streamlined service. Whilst the legislative and administrative mechanisms of our systems are different, the underlying technical standards and design requirements are similar. By pooling our resources and working together we can deliver better value. In the final analysis we are all committed to building safe, environmentally sound and high performing buildings.”

A number of specific initiatives are being worked on. The alignment of LABSS’s Scottish Type Approval Scheme and LABC’s Registered Details schemes is a top priority so that building designers, specifiers and manufacturers can acquire more pre-approval of solutions and designs. Other areas include: adding further customer services; extending product assessment; sharing accessible, centrally held, cross-border registrations and partnerships; joint research on technical policy, service outcomes and customer opinion will also be shared.

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