Industry News

BWF launches new weather testing guidance for windows

The British Woodworking Federation (BWF) has launched a new guide for window and door manufacturers explaining weather testing requirements and providing advice to help joineries to get their products tested.

The publication covers the relevant standards for weather tightness, how to determine what performance level is required as well as what needs to be considered before testing takes place. Weather performance testing is a means of assessing a product's ability to achieve specific requirements as set out in British Standards and/or European Standards. Windows and doors can be tested for Air Permeability, Watertightness and Resistance to Wind Load.

BWF produces a wide range of publications to support members and the joinery industry. On the BWF website, members can find a wealth of information, including the popular Machine Safety Cards, Heritage & Conservation Joinery Factsheets, and a range of employment guides all supported by the BWF member helplines.

The documents can be downloaded from www.bwf.org.uk/publications.

For more information, contact bwf@bwf.org.uk

 

[News URL: http://cti-timber.org/content/bwf-launches-new-weather-testing-guidance-windows]

BWF Joinery State of Trade Survey: Sales volume and Costs rise in Q2 2017

The British Woodworking Federation (BWF) has released the results of its Joinery State of Trade Survey Q2 2017.

The consultation shows that, although rising raw materials costs and labour availability are exerting pressure on joinery manufacturers, the industry is optimistic over sales figures and product investment opportunities.

In details, key points from the BWF Joinery State of Trade Survey Q2 2017 include:

- A balance of 42% of respondents reported an increase in sales volumes over the last quarter, with 52% reporting an increase over the last year. This corresponds with the 14% of respondents reporting a quarterly increase in the previous survey.

- Manufacturers felt that sales volumes would improve in the next quarter, with a balance of 61% predicting an increase for Q3 2017 and a balance of 60% predicting an increase over the next year.

- 42% of companies reported a current order book of future work extending beyond 3 months – up 13% from the previous quarter - with 41% saying that their order book extended from between 1 and 3 months.

- ‘Labour Availability’ was listed as the most likely constraint on output by 27% of respondents. ‘Demand’ and ‘Capacity’ came next, with 25% and 20% of respondents feeling that they were most likely to constrain output.

- 38% of respondents on balance reported increasing their labour force in the last year, with 50% of respondents anticipating an increased labour force over the next year.

- Raw material costs were noted as an inflationary factor for unit costs for 97% of respondents, with wages & salary increases pushing up unit costs for 76% of respondents on balance.

- Exchange rates were a factor in inflating unit costs for 63% of respondents.

- Over the previous year a balance of 64% of respondents had invested in improving their products with 60% investing in their plant/equipment.

- Investment in in product improvement was set for the highest capital investment over the next year, with a balance of 70% planning to invest and with 60% set to invest in plant/equipment.

BWF Policy and Communications Executive Matt Mahony commented: “With optimism over sales volumes and with order books holding up well, our survey paints a picture of an industry working hard to protect its margins against significant cost rises.

“It has been a theme of recent months that the joinery industry is having to think on its feet and diversify its offering. We know from the Q2 survey that investment in product improvement has been rising, and anecdotal evidence suggests that companies are taking on more of the burden of design and specification on account of knowledge gaps within the supply chain."

 

[News URL: http://cti-timber.org/content/bwf-joinery-state-trade-survey-sales-volume-and-costs-rise-q2-2017]

BWF appoints new Training Manager to focus on Skills & Education across Woodworking sector

The British Woodworking Federation (BWF) has appointed a new Training Manager to help ramp up work in the education, training and skills arena for the joinery and woodworking industry.

Tony Batchelor joins the BWF team following former Membership & Training Director Dave Campbell’s departure. Mr Batchelor will be responsible for delivering on the BWF’s three core training objectives: increasing recruitment into the sector; maintaining and developing high quality qualifications and delivery partners, and fostering a culture of continuous learning in the industry. 

The new role will focus exclusively on training and Mr Batchelor will also support the development of associated commercial products.

BWF Chief Executive Iain McIlwee commented on the new appointment: "Perhaps the biggest change the joinery sector currently faces is to the skills landscape. With CITB's role under review, changes to Apprenticeship Funding, and core qualifications being radically reformed, there are huge opportunities for BWF to help develop the training environment that the industry needs."

"We have a good training strategy, but to meet these challenges and opportunities head on we need a fully focussed and dedicated training post within BWF. Now for the first time we have a dedicated training manager role which isn’t split with other responsibilities."

With a wealth of experience on construction industry training matters through working at CITB, Mr Batchelor has previously engaged with construction industry representatives across the four home nations to develop National Occupational Standards, training and qualification solutions, and trailblazer apprenticeships for a wide range of occupational areas.

Having spent the early years of his working life in the public transport sector, Tony worked on training and skills projects for much of his subsequent career including a spell contracted to the British Council to deliver training on vocational and educational projects in Asia.

 

[News URL: http://cti-timber.org/content/bwf-appoints-new-training-manager-focus-skills-education-across-woodworking-sector]

BWF publishes new action plan to keep on growing Woodworking sector

The British Woodworking Federation (BWF) has published an action plan which spells out its priorities for 2017/18 and reviews the key achievements of the past 12 months.

Through the plan, the BWF aims to keep on growing the market for wood products, developing a well-equipped workforce, and influencing change in the new political environment.

In details, the Federation committed to help members meet the challenges of the new skills landscape and manage all accidents out of their businesses through the Health & Safety Hero Campaign.

Other priorities for the year ahead include driving new business to members and championing high standards for UK joinery through the BWF’s Code of Conduct and the schemes: the Wood Window Alliance, BWF Certifire Fire Door & Doorset Scheme and the BWF Stair Scheme.

Sean Parnaby, BWF President and Managing Director of West Port Timber Windows & Doors said: “We have seen a huge amount of change since the last plan was published, and I am delighted to see that many of the ambitious tasks set out there have been accomplished."

“There are plenty of reasons to be optimistic. We are seeing new competition emerging, reshaping the industry and driving us onwards. As the number one information point on woodworking matters, the BWF has never been more successful in providing clear guidance to members, designers, specifiers and increasingly to the general public, through initiatives such as Fire Door Safety Week and BWF Stair Scheme Manager Hannah Mansell’s recent appearance on the BBC’s Jeremy Vine show."

“The BWF is keeping its members ahead of the curve on emerging areas such as materials health and life cycle analysis with additional resources set to be launched over the next few months."


Mr Parnaby also mentioned the efforts undertaken by the BWF - alongside partner organisations such as the Timber Trade Federation, the Structural Timber Association and the Builders Merchants Federation - to grow the entire UK timber supply chain through the CTI. “The UK joinery industry has a stronger voice now than ever before, and BWF will be redoubling its efforts with the wider supply chain through the Confederation of Timber Industries to fight for the economy we need for our businesses to prosper.”

To read the full BWF Action Plan 2017/18, click here.

 

[News URL: http://cti-timber.org/content/bwf-publishes-new-action-plan-keep-growing-woodworking-sector]

BWF launches its 2017 Awards to showcase UK joinery excellence

The Brititish Woodworking Federation (BWF) has officially opened the call for entries for the BWF Awards 2017.

The Awards are designed to offer a showcase for the joinery and woodworking industry’s best projects, products, processes and people.

Joinery manufacturers, timber door, window and interiors companies, and woodworking experts across the UK are being encouraged to seek recognition through entering this year’s Awards. Entry is free and open to all, including non-members of the BWF so long as they are from the joinery and woodworking sector. The deadline for entries is 5pm on Friday 8th September 2017.

The winners will be announced at the BWF’s Annual Awards Dinner at Drapers’ Hall, London on Friday 24th November. All shortlisted entrants will receive a free place at the event and will have their achievements promoted through a high profile marketing and social media campaign.

Last year’s winning companies included Deacon & Sandys, Howdens Joinery & Norma Doors, Two Twenty Stairs, Kierson, Gowercroft and Law & Lewis. Entries for this year’s awards can be submitted at www.bwf.org.uk/choose-wood/awards.

BWF Chief Executive Iain McIlwee said: “The Awards have never been more important in raising the profile of British joinery - they give great projects, products and people the recognition they deserve, and help joinery businesses benchmark their progress against the very best of the industry.

“Many an experienced joiner would consider the carved and hand finished oak staircase that won last year’s Project of the Year to be something of a one-off, but it was simply the best of a number of breath-taking projects competing for the prize.

“The Awards extend further than showcase projects. Rising stars of the industry are celebrated, innovative product design rewarded and the Process Efficiency Award showcases where businesses have prospered from organisational change to become more profitable, sustainable and productive than ever.

“The joinery industry has never been a safer place to work, but the human cost of poor Health & Safety practice is as high as ever and the financial implications of getting it wrong can be eye-watering. This is why we have the Health & Safety Hero Award - to show how Health & Safety is more than a tick box-exercise.

“Have you worked on an amazing wood project? Does your joinery business have any rising stars within the workforce? We urge all UK woodworking businesses to spare a minute and think about what, or who, they might want to put forward as an entry.

“Shortlisted entries get a free ticket the Awards dinner, so hopefully we’ll be seeing you on 24th November at Drapers’ Hall when the winners are announced.”

 

The BWF Awards 2017 categories:

The Product Design in Wood category (sponsored by Teknos) recognises excellence in technical expertise, application and innovation in joinery product manufacture and design.

The highly prestigious Woodworking Project of the Year (sponsored by Accoya) recognises the very best in design, application or ability in joinery manufacture, and innovation in joinery projects. This award is given every year in memory of John Hedgecock, former technical director at the BWF.

Process Efficiency (sponsored by W18) – recognising lean processes which have improved business performance, including maximising value for money, quality and speed of delivery.

Health & Safety Hero (sponsored by Didac) – acknowledging an individual or collective effort which has made a notable difference to the health and safety practices and culture of a business. The award will be presented in memory of Michael Lee, former membership director at the BWF who passed away last year.

Apprentice of the Year (sponsored by CITB) - celebrating apprentices who have really stood out from the crowd, whether through fantastic feats in their work or extraordinary commitment that adds value to a business.

Trainee of the Year (sponsored by CITB) – also celebrating the work and commitment of those who have entered the joinery industry through alternative routes, including graduates, A-level students and in-house trainees.

 

[News URL: http://cti-timber.org/content/bwf-launches-its-2017-awards-showcase-joinery-excellence]

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