NATFEN Digital Feb 19

㈀ ㄀㤀 䜀儀䄀 䌀匀䌀匀  I S S U E 7 | ㈀ ㄀㤀 䜀儀䄀 䌀匀䌀匀  儀뫶䌀䄀刀䐀  匀䌀䠀䔀䴀䔀  刀唀䰀䔀匀 䄀一䐀  刀䔀儀唀䤀刀䔀䴀䔀一吀匀 儀뫶䌀䄀刀䐀  匀䌀䠀䔀䴀䔀  刀唀䰀䔀匀 䄀一䐀  刀䔀儀唀䤀刀䔀䴀䔀一吀匀 M A R C H 2 0 1 8

圀伀刀䬀䤀一䜀 䤀一 䄀匀匀伀䌀䤀䄀吀䤀伀一 圀䤀吀䠀  䌀伀一匀吀刀唀䌀吀䤀伀一 匀䬀䤀䰀䰀匀 䌀䔀刀吀䤀䘀䤀䌀䄀吀䤀伀一 匀䌀䠀䔀䴀䔀

 ㄀㄀㐀 ㈀㜀㈀   ㌀㌀     簀     挀猀挀猀䀀最焀愀焀甀愀氀椀昀椀挀愀琀椀漀渀猀⸀挀漀洀 唀渀椀琀 ㄀Ⰰ ㄀㈀ 伀ᤠ䌀氀漀挀欀 䌀漀甀爀琀Ⰰ 䄀琀琀攀爀挀氀椀昀昀攀 刀漀愀搀Ⰰ 匀栀攀昀昀椀攀氀搀 匀㐀 㜀圀圀 SEVEN NEW CATEGORIES

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CLIPPINGS AND MUSINGS – FEBRUARY 2019 - HELEN DUVAL A nother excellent exhibition season looms on the horizon and already the FIT show is talking about important topics of the moment for the glazing sector. Industry leaders are looking at the event as a positive way to The needs of the consumer and the energy conscious developer will be a focus so it will be interesting to discover the latest trends and the views of the speakers as they focus on the materials, practices and thinking which could shape our future living.

generate leads and inspire investment regarding new and improved solutions for the market that will be pivotal for everyone in the sector moving forward. Undoubtedly it will be a great show and well worth a visit to the NEC in May this year. Put the dates in your diary! Earlier in the year there will also be some excellent opportunities to sample the best the industry has to offer with Vision 2019, Futurebuild 2019 and the Home Renovation Show promising great things to make life easier for builders and installers in relation to product design. It is hoped, commercial and domestic sectors will be energised by positive developments due to be introduced that will spark de-bate as the industry continues to evolve.

Smart buildings and associated technologies that operate without human intervention continue to be a topic that cause much discussion. LET’S TALK LABOUR Sadly, the skills shortage continues to hamper growth across the sector and it still appears to be driv-ing up wages throughout the construction industry to far above the national average. This situation could potentially put more of the government’s biggest housing and infrastructure programmes at risk, with a considerable amount of construction professionals still citing labour shortages as a significant growth barrier. Bricklayers and quantity surveyors remain in short supply according to recent news.

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HOT TOPICS There are some extremely thought provoking issues raised on DGB at the moment and they do make you sit and think about the massive shifts that could occur within the sector, depending on adherence to industry legislation, Brexit, quality standards and naturally, that all important end user. Irrespective of our position on Brexit, which seems to offer new scares and options in relation to business on almost a daily basis, surely what we should be geared towards is a new, better and brighter perspective for the country as we move forward? Economically, there is huge uncertainty that leaves people questioning direction, but the sector as a whole remains driven to succeed, particularly when its back is against the wall. Looking back to 2008 when a recession hit hard, there were some very focused individuals who surfaced like phoenix and began to reshape the industry as it struggled to cope and these people today continue to set bench-marks. STAY FOCUSED Marketing helped to drive things forward, embracing new technologies that could help steer the sector and this is still the case now. A slick strategy helps everyone gain ground. So what are the best routes these days? Naturally, websites, social media and blogs help here,… they are fast and very effective. Likewise, well designed POS material that simply and easily sells the merits of a range in a way that is most useful to the installer has to be a great method of bringing things into focus for inves-tors. Knowing how your customer works is pivotal - we are at a crux when it comes to generational business development. Grasping a new way to work is not always easy, yet that is something this industry can relate to with the tenacity of its motivators and leaders as well as its ability to innovate and reinvigorate enthusiasm about an ever changing market.

GETTING THE MESSAGE OUT THERE

Obviously I’m in favour of online news portals for many reasons. Online media, news and shopping is now leading the way when it comes to news, information and developing industrial arenas. It changes our lives on almost a daily basis and mostly for the better. Tighter legislation is bringing into check fraudulent and abusive behaviour, so to get the word out there has never been such a beneficial tool. Online publishing and promotion is more ecologically friendly, which just has to be a superb benefit to the planet. Personally, I would far rather have 100 emails cluttering up my inbox daily, than one unwanted piece of a paperchain through my letterbox that has caused the felling of a tree. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good read and a well tailored bro-chure because I remember it….but millennials are growing tired of this route to promote a business and they are the next generation of business leaders. ‘Our printing press is the internet. Our coffee houses are now Social Media.’ I have quoted journalist Heather Brookes before, but she is so right. From a publishing point of view, it does make me smile when people criticise the online news forums and publishing houses – particularly when it seems to be the first route they choose to fire off angry messages or even promotions about the benefits in their opinion, of not using it. Hilarious, …but I suspect people are grasping that! Online technology has the ability to change thought processes in a nanosecond. No matter how peo-ple struggle against it, the internet and its associated technology is here. It is not going anywhere. It is growing and it is adapting to the needs of the user in business and private lives on a daily basis, and mostly for the better.

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APP CREATION CAN IMPROVE YOUR PROFIT MARGIN

A pps are a superb invention giving been easier to interact and gain the attention of potential new customers and all via the convenience of simple app innovation. For this sector being able to provide quotes, designs and technical specifications while out on-site is invaluable. This type of technology is not just a small addition for a business, as it can really simplify connectivity with customers making it an excellent marketing tool. The simplicity to adopt them into a business makes apps an attractive addition to marketing campaigns as they are a fast and simple method of staying up to date in a world that increasingly demands we combine aesthetics, quality and technology. Whether it’s mobile showrooms as created by Infinity or construction management apps such as PlanGrid - business life is becoming so much easier through this type of technology. By using and adapting smartphone technology, mobile apps give great added value as online support to a business, giving those who use them a richer experience of the companies who develop companies excellent access to a bigger audience reach. Never before has it

them. It’s a fast and simple additional customer service. Checking out the competition is always a wise idea so that any apps created do not replicate something that may already be on the market. Keeping things unique is essential in this sector with many new marketing apps created daily. Discussions with customers about the purpose and usefulness of a new app may be helpful in the concept stage, to ensure that it has the right purpose as it is developed. Consolidating data and evaluating the market will be important before budget is set aside to create the new ’sales tool’ Getting expert advice on coding and development will be vital once the decision has been made to progress with new app technology. With many online guides, YouTube tutorials or even short courses, it may be possible to create a shiny new app inhouse. If the thought of coding is a terrifying prospect, there are freelance sites such as Upwork, PeoplePerHour.com or toptal.com who can help companies tailor ideas and create a completely individual new app.

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Once all things have been checked, and double checked, it will be necessary to try things out. For those with an established business then this is probably best done with existing customers, to see how well it is received and how much of a benefit it will be to their business too. Most people today use digital technology to simplify many areas of business, so asking a few trusted customers for feedback prior to main launch might be a good idea. Once any potential issues have been ironed out the marketing to support the launch of the app can then be rolled out to the wider customer base and potential target market. Promotion for apps can be achieved effectively via all main social media channels and online support avenues, such as publishers and promotional online portals. People can quickly pick up on adverts and this can all tie into corporate websites and branding programmes. App promotion does not have to cost vast amounts money with boost options available on most of the well known social feeds to help promote the launch. If selling products or services to the consumer market then it is probably best to get rid of any potential technical glitches or bugs before going all out on an app marketing campaign. Once the app has been tried, tested and achieved the standard required, a launch programme should take place in all relevant trade sectors. Here it may be worth tying into online publishing options who can help to promote things for quicker awareness and faster uptake. Keep on creating a buzz about the new technology and ensure that the app is regularly checked by the original developers in order to optimise its benefits for customers. Customer feedback and applying any suggestions given will help to keep a company ahead of its competition.

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MAKE YOUR MARKETING VIDEOS PAY F or many businesses the use of videos has been something created to help give a company a personal touch via sound and

Voice-overs, interviews and good photography including drone video if relevant, will help to demonstrate differences to the competition. A website with a video can house all that is great about a business and its team, which will inspire the best people to want to join it and will help to show why a company is better than others in the same field. This type of video can also inspire people to invest in a company or group. Building on that theme, companies can also create product videos for specific customer investment. Highlighting qualities or new developments on a regular basis will extend the vision of a company and show a forward thinking approach to market developments. Stronger, faster, better quality, whatever advantages are offered, making life better is what this type of video is all about. Apps are a topic of this month’s discussions but they are such a technological revolution! For businesses an app video can explain a lot in a really short space of time. They give a clear and concise message exceedingly quickly and are very easy to create. These can focus on key features and drive viewers to explore more about a company they can be a light, fun and highly visual tool that will quickly engage users.

vision. It’s a voice that is a welcoming tool that can help improve both short and longer term business strategies. After being convinced to spend a few thousand pounds, videos are then parked on websites and corporate youtube channels. Once the initial flurry of excitement and interest regarding the latest custom video has been achieved what happens then? It depends on why you commissioned it in the first place. Customised corporate videos are an excellent marketing tool that can help to drive traffic to a website or inform customers about the latest updates on products or services. Via online portals they are a great way to spread a modern message to potential new customers who prefer to be tech savvy and watch moving pictures. Yet what types of videos are right for a particular business? Corporate messages that give an up to date view of the strength behind a company’s brand are an engaging way to communicate and there are many types out there that reinforce corporate qualities.

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YouTube is now a mighty device to drive people to invest in a company. Stars have been born here and companies created that would have foundered were they not able to demonstrate their merits via a YouTube video. It can demonstrate changes, explain how to use a new product or it can give access to corporate events in a way that has never before been achievable on screen. Whether you love them or hate them short online commercials before, during and after virtually every video on the global channel mean it’s a go-to arena for marketers. Capturing interest is vital here if people are going to stay watching a corporate video for more than 30 seconds. 10 Seconds in, if interest has not been captured here then forget it. Fun and exciting - two key attributes that every YouTube video should include to keep an audience focused. Streamlining videos captures a moment there and then. People like this - it is an honest way to speak to an audience but content is absolutely key here. Company marketers wanting to expand or market their business potential have a wealth of choice when it comes to video content. There are plenty out there looking to help highlight the advantages of any company videos are extremely versatile, but knowing which type of video to produce and the audience it will reach is critical to its success.

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㈀ ㄀㤀 䜀儀䄀 䌀匀䌀匀 

儀뫶䌀䄀刀䐀  匀䌀䠀䔀䴀䔀  刀唀䰀䔀匀 䄀一䐀  刀䔀儀唀䤀刀䔀䴀䔀一吀匀

圀伀刀䬀䤀一䜀 䤀一 䄀匀匀伀䌀䤀䄀吀䤀伀一 圀䤀吀䠀  䌀伀一匀吀刀唀䌀吀䤀伀一 匀䬀䤀䰀䰀匀 䌀䔀刀吀䤀䘀䤀䌀䄀吀䤀伀一 匀䌀䠀䔀䴀䔀

 ㄀㄀㐀 ㈀㜀㈀   ㌀㌀     簀     挀猀挀猀䀀最焀愀焀甀愀氀椀昀椀挀愀琀椀漀渀猀⸀挀漀洀 唀渀椀琀 ㄀Ⰰ ㄀㈀ 伀ᤠ䌀氀漀挀欀 䌀漀甀爀琀Ⰰ 䄀琀琀攀爀挀氀椀昀昀攀 刀漀愀搀Ⰰ 匀栀攀昀昀椀攀氀搀 匀㐀 㜀圀圀

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IS WEARABLE TECHNOLOGY MAKING WORK LIFE EASIER?

With smartwatches, Fitbits and VR becoming as much much a part of our wardrobes as shirts, shoes and coats it is taking no time at all for wearable technology to be adapted into our lives to make them a lot more simple. It would seem that opportunities abound for the business sector too as increasingly companies are evaluating and introducing new ways to improve services and working methods via inventive smart technology. Headsets, smart tokens and the good old VR headsets all being evaluated and adapted to create a better service for customers or patients. Looking at Apple, as a company we have seen revolution and evolution turn into a meteoric rise as regards to innovation, that most of us cannot live without today in our every day lives. We can now dash through train stations and airports with tickets and boarding passes on our phones or for more an even simpler life, on our wrists! The battery charge on an electric BMW can be checked and charged with a quick tap on

a screen. Daily fitness nudges and our heartbeats can be included in our technological diaries with subtle buzzes pushing us as reminders that we need to move away from our desks in order to stay in peak physical fitness or to ensure our blood circulates regularly. For those with disabilities Apple has been working hard to create gadgets and apps that will simplify life, helping people to maintain independence. Those with sight and hearing difficulties can still be part of the evolving digital world. For example, communication is everything for those with sight or hearing impairment with digital technology that has been designed to communicate specifically at the touch of a screen as it helps people to be part of the digital revolution. Take a look at Molly Watt such an inspiring woman who has worked with Apple on just this type of technological development. The team is so inspired by her that we will be supporting The Molly Watt Trust as one

of our Champion Charities. www.molly-watt-trust.org

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It is not just Apple that has been progressing technologically as Android Wear has provided superb alternative options for those who use Samsung, Sony or LG smartwatches that offer similar technical features. Google Wear also is keeping pace by offering up solutions to keep us in touch with the ever fluctuating communications cloud. For our personal lives we can track our pulses, plan our diets, schedule meetings, protect our homes and organise health regimes with a quick scan of our wrists. One thing that flickers through my mind is the guarantees regarding security with software now so readily available and open to attack, do we have more cyber vulnerabilities? Linking that into business it would seem that there is huge scope for growth with VR, headsets and smart tokens being incorporated into everyday business life. Email messages, meeting notifications and regular message updates that are sent directly to a gadget on your wrist will save a substantial amount of time wasting during office hours. This type of investment would appear to be extremely attractive in relation to business and business expenses with everything becoming traceable at the touch of a button. Being completely confident with online and offline security will become so important, particularly given the cyber attacks that have occurred during the last 18th months. Can information be safely stored for individuals? How much protection is provided by encryption and passwords? Is all our highly personal and sensitive data easily accessible to hackers? Yet wearable technology is exciting and there are numerous business sectors already that can benefit from wearable technology investment which will be a joy to explore in future editions.

Hands-free headsets with associated display technology could be perfect for emergency crews, search-and-rescue teams or surgeons with VR headsets. Those in the field could access locations, carry out life-saving procedures, or even inspect terrain without having to actually carry a device. Looking closer to home at the architectural and construction industries, this type of technology is all ready beginning to revolutionise these sectors. Creating rooms with a view is just part of the service being offered by some estate agents for example, with VR platforms being introduced to allow potential buyers the opportunity to view properties from their own homes. This takes 360 degree tours to a whole new level with the possibility of being able to walk through a house using VR headsets - an idea that has the potential to eliminate first time viewing. www.jeffreyross.co.uk/jrvr It is obvious that there are many advantages to explore through wearable technology and by adopting this into our everyday lives it will make us all so much more productive. For example Tesco has used wearable technology since 2004 to track movements of staff and adapted some of its procedures accordingly. In the future, wearable technology will become a huge factor in business development undoubtedly it is a successful product in the making; one that provides security, health benefits and statistics that will combine well with Industry 4.0, even if that does leave a slight chill under the skin. At the moment we can all sleep safe in our beds certain that wearable technology is a prompt for you or your body to wake or move according to your own schedule for now. It can also tell the time.

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£500,000 FOR A NEW HOUSE, CYLINDERS THAT CAN BE SNAPPED IN SECONDS

M ost of us know the importance of owner. Doesn’t matter if it’s a £500 door or a £2000 door. There are enough options out there to provide at the very least anti-snap cylinders. Obviously the higher rated and more anti- everything the better. That’s the retro-fit market. But what about areas like new build homes? What about new commercial buildings or offices? How much thought has been given to these areas? £500K HOUSE, FEW QUID CYLINDER I am in the process of buying a new house at the moment. When I mean new, I mean new-build, so literally out of the ground brand new. Naturally, when we began this process we looked at a variety of builders at a variety of sites being built close to where we wanted to live. The houses were nice of course, show homes always are. There are varying qualities of builder out there. Some more budget, some higher end, some really higher end. We chose our builder and site and we’re looking forward to completing and moving in. providing a high quality cylinder with any new door purchase to a home

However, on every single site I said I would do one thing no matter what we bought and that is we would change the cylinders in the doors. Without fail every single one was fitted with a bog standard Europrofile door cylinder. With such a focus on security now with products like Ring, smart door locks, security lights etc, door cylinders to new-build homes is an area that has clearly been overlooked to me. Consider it this way. Someone could be buying a £500,000 new home, or even more, and they’re getting a cylinder worth a couple of quid and could be snapped in a matter of seconds. Does that not sound ludicrous to you? For the sake of a few pounds more per house, builders could easily up the spec of their doors to include a high quality door cylinder as standard. It would hardly eat into their profit margins and would be yet another USP for their new customers to ponder over. All that money spent on a new home, just to be left vulnerable by one of the smallest yet most important components of their new house.

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What it means is that these new-build estates are a burglars dream right now. They know the police don’t have the resources to go after them. They know that most doors on new homes are likely to be fitted with a cylinder that can fail. They could easily hit a number of houses very quickly in a single night. Unfortunately, I know that’s what has been happening as I was told some shocking figures from a friend of mine earlier on today which is what drove me to write this post. TIME TO CHANGE THE RULES Why is it that house builders can get away with putting cylinders in that can be bypassed by burglars? Because they can. We know that Doc Q was updated in 2015, but the reality is a lot of cylinders out there can still be attacked in various ways and be forced to fail. How do I know? Because we have tested a whole bunch of them at our place in a dummy door where we physically go at them and try to make them fail. The sad fact is that we’re able to bypass many far quicker than we should. So, even if a new-build house has a Kitemark on it which has allowed it to be installed in the door, that doesn’t actually mean it will keep a burglar out.

To that end, the rules need to be updated to reflect this reality and demand that only cylinders that achieve the highest ratings possible be fitted. If we’re going to build new homes for families, we might as well do it right from the outset. And lets be honest, this won’t be a huge cost to the builders. They buy all their materials in bulk and can command big discounts from suppliers. So for them to go to the market and buy thousands of Sold Secure Diamond rates cylinders isn’t going to dent their margins. But, rather than change the rules and force builders to do it, the better thing would be for builders to recognise the scale of the problem and act now to change their specifications. They won’t need to be educated as to the levels of burglary right now, it’s been very high both before and after Christmas and is unlikely to drop off any time soon. Would this not be a positive step both in terms of home quality as well as public reputation? Home owners wouldn’t have to go change their locks for the purposes of security if they can move into a home with the best cylinders already installed. I know that when we move in we shall be upgrading the door cylinders. Though when we’re going to be paying what we are, it seems baffling as to why we have to.

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2019 HAS TO BE THE YEAR WE REALLY GET BEHIND RECYCLING

2 018 was easily the year where we saw the antiplastic movement take hold. Bars and restaurants ditched plastic straws for paper ones. Sky News really plugged their Ocean Rescue campaign. People swam gargantuan lengths in the sea to highlight the issues of plastic pollution. There is no doubt that single-use plastics are doing immense harm. So much of it is not disposed of properly, and ends up in the ecosystems that humanity and the planet relies on. From a fenestration industry perspective, the PVCu part of our market is right in the cross hairs of the anti-plastic. Of all the major issues our industry faces right now, this has to be near the top of the list. BIG RECYCLING BOOST No matter where in the supply chain you are, recycling has to be one of your big changes to make this year. As in, do a lot more of it! Due to the mob power of social media, I see a possibility that PVCu could see a growing movement against

it’s use as a building material. That would be wrong. But before I explain why PVCu definitely should not be shunned, it’s our use of any and all fenestration materials that should also be our focus. I’ll use our own business as an example. Last year we went from using a private skip hire company to a council skip. The big pull for us was the fact that everything that went in the skip was sent to be recycled. Prior to changing our skip supplier, we already recycled our PVCu, timber and aluminium post consumer frames. We had done for a while. But plenty of other things did end up in the skip and we wanted to find out who could help us do more. Turns out our council did exactly what we wanted. If we used their skips, everything that went in there was sent off to a major recycling plant in Selby where it would all be recycled and turned into something else. We were told that it would mean nothing would go to landfill. We were happy with that, and the big bonus is that it was just under half the cost of normal skips from our private providor. So a win-win.

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The odd thing about it however was they admitted that they didn’t advertise the service as they didn’t want to become inundated by attracting too many companies as they wouldn’t be able to cope and that they would risk putting smaller private firms out of business. So they didn’t want to go heavy on it. I suspect that they will struggle to keep this under wraps for too long as more and more companies will actively look for services like this. As an industry, this is one way that we can do more to make our sector more sustainable. I don’t know if every council area will provide a service like this. I guess we are lucky where we are to have it. But, if I were a company in this industry I would be seriously looking at council services to see if they could help boost recycling output and even save some money! I am happy to say that (providing the council does what they promise) our installations business Not that I ever think PVCu would ever be truly dumped by the construction sector, but facts have to prevail over sentiment when it comes to any building material. Remember there is a whole industry supporting tens of thousands of jobs based on the material. The average lifespan of PVCu windows and doors is around 30 years if looked after. It has been shown that PVCu can be recycled ten times and remade into windows and doors again, which gives the material a potential 300 year span. Not bad. I would like to think that in 300 years time we will have thought of a way to break down PVCu when it reaches the very end in a way that is safe to the environment. A lot can happen in 300 years. PVCu achieves some of the best energy efficiency ratings and is a clear leader in that field. When we’re all trying to make homes warmer, it makes sense to keep using the material that is best at it. sends nothing to landfill. DON’T DITCH PVCU

Remember too that PVCu has undergone some immense change over the past decade, with some companies genuinely offering products that can rival their timber or aluminium alternatives. Think also of the damage to the industry should PVCu begin to be ditched as a material of choice. Jobs would be lost. Companies would go under. The largest residential part of our market would be under threat. The chances of this happening in the real world are slim, but we live in uncertain times and I don’t think any of us can rule out things going one way or another right now. THE YEAR TO RECYCLE The very best way we can show that our industry is listening and trying to improve is for every single one of us to look at how we dispose of our post-consumer waste now and see how we can improve on it. It doesn’t matter whether you’re an installer, fabricator, systems company or anything else in between. We all have to do it. We cannot rely on some of the biggest companies to take up the slack for us either. Companies like Eurocell and VEKA are already doing some great work in this field, but they cannot do it on their own. The advantages are clear. Less of our industry’s waste goes into the ground or into the oceans, and that’s a win for everyone. As an industry we are seen to be proactive and that helps with reputational improvement. We consume less virgin material, which is a win for sustainability. We create a whole new industry within our own sector. That’s a win for job creation, business and opportunity. Fail to do so and I’m not sure we can continue to wander on with our heads in the sand and not expect some kind of sustained social media criticism.

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24 NFA DIGITAL FEBRUARY 2019

GENERAL

· 70mm sash and 80mm frame · Double rebated for extreme weather · Discreet external seal · Fully foiled for authenticity · Welded or mechanically jointed

A new generation of flush sash windows…

01332 883900 sales@liniar.co.uk www.liniar.co.uk/resurgence

FEBRUARY 2019 NFA DIGITAL 25

GENERAL

ADVERTISING OPTIONS AVAILABLE ON DGB L ets be up front, your company is probably looking at increasing digital marketing in 2019, and I have a large number of • racking / storage solutions • glass systems company

advertising slots available on DGB to allow you to do that. Prices are the most competitive in the industry, and what you get for your money is far more comprehensive than anything else in the industry. So, below are the slots that are available right now:

• weekly DGB email adverts • lead generator

• recruitment agency • reinforcement supplier

Unlike other media sites and publications, it’s one company per niche. So it’s first come first served. Once a position is filled it will only become available again if the existing client decides not to continue. DGB had some incredible stats in 2018, in which I will go into more detail in my full site review coming up in the next couple of weeks. But for now, these were the major metrics for 2018 that matter:

• machinery company

• aluminium systems company

• ancillaries/trims/trade counter

• transport solutions

• arching company

• page views: 314,459

• timber fabricator

• visitors: 243,107

• steel fabricator

• unique visitors: 169,446

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GENERAL

DGB had major double-digit growth in 2018 compared to the year previous, which means those who chose to advertise on the site were seen by even more people than the year before. This year I am hoping to break the 350k page view mark for the first time. I will set out in my targets properly for 2019 in a post in the coming days. Whilst page views alone are great, it’s where else your content gets published which is important too. All pieces of PR published are automatically circulated on my three social media channels on Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin. All of which now have significant followings, especially Twitter and Linkedin. All published articles are also automatically included on my weekly DGB newsletter which goes out every Wednesday morning. This is approaching 2000 subscribers strong now.

But the key factor with my newsletter is that all those people are industry related and have chosen to subscribe by choice. The open rate and reading rate is far higher than the industry average because I’m not using a generic database. It means those who advertise with me have their content read by a significantly higher percentage. You can find out more about what full advertising packages entail by clicking here. I have some great plans ahead for DGB, not just this year, but in the years to come, and I am looking to promote some of the best companies and brands out there with it. So if you see a slot available above that suits your company and you’re looking to boost your digital advertising, please get in touch with me via my email address: info@doubleglazingblogger.com.

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GENERAL

FLOOD-RESISTANT DOORS ARE FAILING I n 2015 floods in Cumbria from Storm Desmond wreaked havoc on hundreds of homes. In response, the Government made available millions of pounds in order that home owners could claim grants of up to £5000 to help towards installing new defences for their properties. This included flood-resistant doors. Another company is also in the processing of rectifying problems with flood doors.

Snapped cylinders, locking mechanism problems, doors that are stiff. To me these are issues with the quality of the materials of the doors installed. One or two doors you can forgive, we live in the real world where nothing is perfect. But these are problems that seem to have affected many more people than that. At that point you have to question the quality of the materials being used in these doors. The other factor here is the quality of the installation. You can have the best door on earth but if you don’t have the right people fitting it then it’s just as good as the worst door on earth. As is mentioned in the report, the fact that home owners are having to put this right and even fit additional measures after what they thought was a job done properly only serves to frustrate those people further. Another incident that does nothing to help the reputation of our industry.

On February 11th a story was published on the BBC News website which reported that a proportion of these doors were failing. Given what is going on elsewhere in politics right now this story seems to have gone under the radar. But for the people of Cumbria this is a serious issue and has to be addressed. “BREAKING” According to the BBC report, more than 60 people have said they have had problems with their doors, including locks snapping, issues with locking mechanisms and doors being very stiff. Residents have reported the doors as “breaking”. Apparently one of the sub-contracted companies fitting the doors has gone into liquidation, whilst another company has picked up the responsibility of putting right the jobs that have been left to sort out by the liquidated company.

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CODE OF PRACTICE In the last line of the BBC report it said that the Government was developing a code of practice to improve standards of flood defence products. You would expect a response like this, it’s from the textbook. But I’m not sure that pursuing just this line is going to solve the problem. I see installation and product quality issues in this report. Again, going back to my earlier point, you can have the best guidelines backed up with the best products, but if they’re not installed properly then chances are they are going to fail anyway. The only way a code of practice is going to be effective is if they legally bind companies into using products of a certain quality, installed by people who are qualified to install such products. However that won’t be the case. This will be a code of practice to guide companies and that’s a far as it will go.

Flood defence, for those who live in flood-prone areas, is perhaps the single most important issue for home owners. Their home insurance will be higher than average. Considerations will be given on a day to day basis dependent on the weather. Just ask the people who live by the river in York. When it floods there is floods bad. There is a pub that has stopped putting carpet down because there’s no point anymore. So when it comes to products like flood-proof doors and windows it really does matter. For many it’s the first line of defence in making sure water doesn’t get into their home. Quality matters in flood defence. A flood-proof product that fails is no different to a standard product. The industry is looking deeply at security at the moment, perhaps this is a good time to address another serious area in flood defence windows and doors and make sure that this doesn’t become a problem any bigger than it needs to be.

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GENERAL

LOCK LOCK SECURES A GOOD DESIGN AWARD

T he Lock Lock security handle that is part of the Sweet range of door furniture from Brisant Secure has just won an internationally acclaimed GOOD DESIGN® Award for 2018 in the category of Safety and Security. The GOOD DESIGN® awards are one of the world’s oldest design awards programme which is organised by The Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design in cooperation with the European Centre for Architecture, Art, Design and Urban Studies. It was founded in 1950 by architects Eero Saarinen, Charles and Ray Eames and Edgar Kaufmann, Jr. There were other notable winners from 47 different countries worldwide including the likes of Apple, Kohler, Samsung and Smeg with just 12 winners representing the safety and security sector. Lock Lock is the only security door handle that carries Sold Secure and is increasingly being sold as a cylinder free option for non-final exit doors. It’s also part of Sweet, a revolutionary door furniture suite that swhares the same registered curved shape throughout and that has successfully achieved over 8,000 hours in a salt spray chamber. Nick Dutton, CEO of Brisant Secure commented: ‘We are very much a business with a global outlook in everything that we do. To sit alongside so many household brands and product innovators is testament to our Lock Lock handle and the way in which we design super secure products for our markets. It’s now become a must sell on all entrance door sales.’ For further information on Brisant Secure and the entire product range visit www.brisant-secure.com, e-mail sales@brisant-secure.com or call 01924 410200. For further information on the award winning Lock Lock handle visit www.lock-lock.co.uk. You can also follow them on Twitter @BrisantSecure and @LockLockSecure.

30 NFA DIGITAL FEBRUARY 2019

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TRACEY JACKSON APPOINTED AS FIRST CHAMPION SUPPORTER FOR BUILDING OUR SKILLS W ith a shared passion and drive to help youngsters choose Fenestration as a career of choice, Tracey Jackson, Business Development Manager for Howells Patent Glazing Limited has become Building Our Skills campaign’s first official Champion Supporter. Tracey has been working with local colleges and enterprises in the West Midlands for the last couple of years, tirelessly campaigning to gain a better awareness of Fenestration in local schools and colleges. “Howells is a family run business, set up my father in 1973,” comments Tracey, “we employ about 38 staff, and have a massive enthuses on firstly, ensuring our staff are well trained to meet the demands of our customers and secondly, working hard to engage with local communities and develop a program which enables local youngsters to understand the industry. Tracey, recently spoke at the Building Our Skills conference in November 2018, addressing over 30 delegates. She shared the company’s adventure of how they have proactively engaged with youngsters to help capture their imagination towards manufacturing, told how with perseverance and regular interaction they have been able to develop close ties with the schools and colleges and have a greater influence with how students look at the Fenestration industry. Stephanie Tague, Head of Building Our Skills said; “Tracey’s presentation gave others a real overview of what can be achieved within a SME business. Coupling this with her passion for enthusing others by encouraging them to embrace the concept to engage with local schools, colleges and youngsters, it makes her a fabulous candidate to become a Champion Supporter for Building Our Skills.”

For more information regarding BOS visit www.buildingourskills.co.uk or contact Stephanie direct on sayhello@buildingourskills.co.uk

FEBRUARY 2019 NFA DIGITAL 31

MAIN EVENT SPONSORS glass technology

RapidLam Shape: More Scope To Shape The Future.

Shape Cutting of Laminated Glass as a Compact Unit More possibilities to cut shapes and free forms on laminated glass. Can be integrated into an existing line, or as stand-alone machine. This compact machine uses synchronised turning cutting heads, providing precise results that match the cutting plan. • Automatic cutting of free forms in laminated glass • Can be used as part of a cutting line or as stand-alone machine • Laser foil separation can be installed at a later date

32 NFA DIGITAL FEBRUARY 20198 HEGLA Machinery (UK) Ltd. •Buckinghamshire•MK8 0AJ•E-mail: info@hegla.co.uk

www.hegla.co.uk

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NEW Slimline SL16 integral blinds

Ideal for composite doors and vertical sliding windows Slider or cord controlled options Available in white, beige or silver ONLY fromMorley Glass & Glazing ORDER TODAY

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FEBURARY 2019 NFA DIGITAL 33

MAIN EVENT SPONSORS

EIFFEL TOWER IN TOP SHAPE FOR 130TH BIRTHDAY THANKS TO EDGETECH’S TRISEAL

I t’s one of the world’s most famous structures and an instantly recognisable symbol not just of Paris, but France itself. This year, the Eiffel Tower will mark its 130th birthday – and state-of-the-art Edgetech innovation is helping ensure it’ll still be delighting visitors for decades to come. When esteemed architects Moatti & Rivière produced highly complex designs for renovating the Tower’s 57.6m viewing platform, their plans called for glass units that excelled on all fronts. They envisaged a 130-square foot glass floor, offering spectacular views of the Champs de Mars below, fringed with a 2.5m glass balustrade, and, most ambitiously of all, a double-kinked glass façade, 8m high and 20m wide. Both concave and convex in parts, the façade was far too intricate to be manufactured in one piece and was therefore made from a mosaic of cylindrically bent rectangular panels, all incorporating Edgetech’s Super Spacer Triseal Premium Plus.

With its unique triple-seal design, Triseal offers extreme durability and the structural strength to excel in even the most demanding architectural conditions. It’s been used in some of the world’s most striking and iconic new buildings, including Zaha Hadid’s The Opus tower in Dubai. “It’s immensely gratifying to see Edgetech technology used in one of history’s most famous buildings,” comments Managing Director Chris Alderson. “Most people on the planet can recognise the Eiffel Tower, and it’s the most visited pay-to-enter monument in the world, attracting over seven million tourists every year. “For us, having our products chosen to help safeguard the Tower for the future is a huge honour – and a testament to the incredible strength and versatility Super Spacer Triseal can offer.”

For more information please visit www.edgetechig.co.uk

34 NFA DIGITAL FEBRUARY 20198

MAIN EVENT SPONSORS

DGB | 2019

WWW.DOUBLEGLAZINGBLOGGER.COM

DYNAMIC, SHARP, AND ENGAGING

WITH OVER 3600 PUBLISHED ARTICLES, 6150 COMMENTS AND WELL OVER A MILLION PAGE VIEWS, THE GLAZING INDUSTRY'S FRESHEST, SHARPEST AND RELEVANT OPINION AND DISCUSSION IS ON DGB. During 2019 DGB is set to be read by over 250,000 people, with over 170,000 of those unique. They will generate over 350,000 page views this year alone. DGB continues to grow and expand, covering even more of the diverse sector that is UK fenestration. Join the industry's best conversation: www.doubleglazingblogger.com

FEBURARY 2019 NFA DIGITAL 35

MAIN EVENT SPONSORS

GQA QUALIFICATIONS SOLE PROVIDER OF CSCS CARDS FOR THE FENESTRATION AND GLAZING SECTORS

G QA is the sole provider of CSCS cards for the fenestration and glazing sectors following lengthy discussions with the Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS). It is a major development for GQA, the fenestration industry’s qualifications writing and awarding body and is recognition of the relevance of the qualifications they issue to industry. The arrangement comes following the Construction Leadership Council’s requirement of ensuring nationally recognised qualifications are in place for all construction related occupations. Speaking for GQA, CEO Mick Clayton commented it was a lengthy process with CSCS to ensure – jointly – that we had everything in place to enable a smooth transition for the issuing of these most important skills certification cards.

“The number of contractors and employers who will allow a person on site without proof of competence is virtually nil. When you consider that the basis of getting a CSCS card is a formal industry related qualification based on National Occupational Standards, then it gives the whole scheme a real quality base”. “GQA qualifications are all wholly industry relevant and that is why we are so delighted to have reached this agreement with CSCS. It demonstrates the industry’s belief that the qualifications we have are entirely relevant to those who want to work on sites surveying or installing fenestration products, and it will help us to make the industry even more aware of how it can deliver even better quality to its customers through qualifications”.

36 NFA DIGITAL FEBRUARY 20198

MAIN EVENT SPONSORS

Temporary cards are issued to experienced workers on proof that they have registered to undertake a relevant GQA qualification and completion of either the GQA Health and Safety test, or the CITB touch-screen test. The applicant has 12 months to complete their qualification. A full card can be requested on completion of the GQA qualification and is then valid for 5 years. For those already holding a relevant GQA qualification it is a simple transition to the new card design. For apprentices or new entrants to the industry, the same requirements apply but the card is valid for 2 years to enable the achievement of qualifications. The new cards cost £30, and assessment and Health and Safety testing can be discussed with our UK-wide network of centres. The new GQA CSCS Q-Card covers all fenestration and glazing related occupations

“Our team are already incredibly busy issuing new GQA Q-Cards, including the CSCS logo to those who need them, and explaining to new applicants what they need to do to achieve one”. GQA has been writing industry qualifications for over 25 years and this new partnership with CSCS is a major step in GQAs push to provide the fenestration and related industries with real quality learning and assessment opportunities. “Achieving this partnership with CSCS has been a great case study in how a collaborative approach, to achieving Quality through Qualifications can deliver benefits for all parties”. GQA’s existing Q-Card is now a partner card to CSCS with the only change being the addition of the CSCS logo. The Q-Card contains all the qualifications held by the card holder and is updated electronically when they achieve something else. In terms of CSCS, GQA will issue temporary, trainee or full cards dependent on the status of the qualification held by the individual applicant.

All new applications should be applied for by calling GQA on 0114 2720033 www.gqaqualifications.com

FEBURARY 2019 NFA DIGITAL 37

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