MESSAGE FROM THE CEO

It seems that my column of two weeks ago about negative media coverage with issues surrounding our profession sparked quite a bit of interest. Make no mistake that we will continue to give this a positive push wherever and whenever we can and equally, bring the issue up with relevant Ministers and others at a senior level.

Just on this note, if you have a positive story to tell from your business and about how you are perhaps making ‘a positive change’, we would love to hear from you and potentially give some coverage to.

In other news, we recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with both the University of Pretoria as well as The South African Council for the Project and Construction Management Professions (SACPCMP). As we (AIB) continue to explore new opportunities around the globe, we see these two signings as creating stronger ties with not only our neighbours in South Africa but also as the organisation broadens its reach globally. It is hoped that in this vein, we will continue to explore new opportunities for potential accreditation of appropriate teaching institutions (universities) of construction management programs.

Have a great weekend everyone,
Greg Hughes

MESSAGE FROM THE CEO

If nothing else, for many it has been an angst filled year with the myriad of issues plaguing the industry at the moment. What we need to do is stop and reflect on some of the positive actions that are taking place post the issues at hand.

As an example, remediation work through recladding has been underway for quite some time on the Lacrosse building in Victoria. Through L.U. Simon, significant and often either unreported or misinterpreted actions by the media has cast what the AIB believes to be an unnecessary shadow over many parts of the industry and specifically, construction businesses themselves.

In another example, Icon’s work on the Opal Tower in Sydney has undertaken many initiatives that are often not reported. These include, but not limited to:

  • There are 392 apartments in the complex
  • 350 apartments were occupied at the time of the incident (late December 2018)
  • Over 370 apartments now available for reoccupation
  • The remaining apartments are subject to investigative works which are required for Icon’s owner Kajima to fulfill their previously committed 20 year structural warranty
  • Structural remediation works were completed 17th July 2019 (10 weeks post approval) and have been overseen by two engineers, a concrete technologist and the Owners Corporation appointed Project Manager. Final inspection of the completed works has also been inspected by the Department of Planning and Government Engineers
  • To date, Icon has spent $29m including dealing with residents and undertaking works
  • Despite constant negative publicity, Icon has remained focussed on the remediation and the resident’s welfare.

I would suggest that the media overall has taken a dim and quite negative view of the issues, without appropriate research etc. It’s time for some positive stories to start emerging. Stories that are both factual and appropriately researched can lead to improvements across the profession. Isn’t it time this starts happening now?

Have a great weekend ahead everyone.
Greg Hughes

MESSAGE FROM THE CEO

Firstly this week, a sincere thank you to those supporters of Constructing Our World 2019. The feedback we received was very positive across many stakeholder groups as a conference that addressed (in some cases head on) the real issues affecting the industry at the moment.

My thanks to the many speakers who gave freely of their time as well as to our sponsors including Meriton Group, Bluebeam and Infrabuild who contributed to the event.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also want to make a special mention of our Conference Chair, Dr Robyn Hardy. Robyn devoted countless hours into making the event what it was. Her passion and sheer determination to pull this together was without a doubt a herculean effort and wraps this up with our utmost heartfelt thanks. Photos from the conference can viewed here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sincere congratulations must also go to our winners from the National Awards which were held in between the conference. It was a great night, recognising some of the country’s outstanding talent in the building and construction industry. The full list of winner can be found here. The photos from the Awards night can be viewed here.

Have a great weekend ahead everyone.
Greg Hughes

BUILDERS PARTNER AUSTRALIAN INSTITUTE ON CONSTRUCTION INNOVATIONS

To improve practice, the Nigerian Institute of Building (NIOB) and its counterpart, Australian Institute of Building (AIB) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding, which would further develop the methodology and technology of building construction.

The pact, which is aimed at making the two bodies have a shared commitment to becoming a stronger professional educator within the construction industry, was signed in Sydney during an event, ‘Constructing Our World’, jointly organised by the New-Zealand Institute of Building, Australian Institute of Building and Singapore Institute of Building.

According to the Australian Institute of Building President, Mr. David Burnell the professionals would work together to raise the level of professionalism in the Nigerian and Australia building industry.

Speaking on the initiative, NIOB President, Mr. Kunle Awobodu explained that the collaboration among members of the two institutes would promote research in the field of construction and also encourage greater participation of members in jointly organised construction events for valuable Continuing Professional Development (CPD).

Mr. kunle Awobodu said there were ongoing discussions on collaboration with the New-Zealand Institute of Building and Singapore Institute of Building to create multilateralism for greater collective drive to technologically shaped construction products.

The two parties have also agreed to exchange information relevant to the development of the building construction management profession in Australia and Nigeria to facilitate an understanding of each other’s work.

In his goodwill message to the forum, the High Commissioner of Nigeria in Australia, Ambassador Bello Kazaure Husseini hoped that the bilateral relationship would advance construction innovations in Nigeria.

Recounting his experience after a tour of building construction sites in Australia, the Vice Chairman of the Council of Registered Builders of Nigeria (CORBON), Dr. Samson Opaluwah commended the level of compliance with standards, which, of course, CORBON would not relent at promoting in Nigeria.

NIOB former General Secretary, Mr. Fadil Elegbede expressed satisfaction on the new value the Sydney event has contributed to the construction knowledge of Nigerian professionals despite the cultural differences.

Source: guardian.ng

2019 NATIONAL PROFESSIONAL EXCELLENCE IN BUILDING AWARDS RESULTS

The 2019 National Professional Excellence in Building Awards were held last Thursday 19 September at the Four Season Hotel in Sydney.

The night was packed with great entertainment by Walangari and Let’s Groove Tonight’s Chris and Emma in addition to lots of networking and celebrating the best in the industry.

A special mention to the 2019 Building Professional’s of the Year:

 

Michael Kilcar from Watpac Construction for his ANSTO M099 Nuclear Medicine Facility project

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clayton McDowell from Team UOW fro his Desert Rose House Project

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • The full list of National winners can be found here.
  • The National Magazine can be read here.

(Photos will be uploaded to our Facebook Page in the coming week).

Congratulations again to all the National Winners!

NATIONAL PRESIDENT’S UPDATE

The busy schedule for institute activities has now seen the conclusion of our Chapter rounds for the Professional Excellence Awards presentations. We have completed the July events with award presentations in Melbourne and Sydney, and our PE winners across all events have now been grouped for the National Judging that commenced on 29th July following the NSW Chapter dinner.

The last month has seen the passing of two senior AIB Life Fellows. The first was the passing of Don “Billy” Cockram MBE LFAIB a VIC Chapter member, MBAV President and past AIB National President on Tuesday 18 June at the age of 94. I was not available to attend the service due to travel commitments away from Melbourne, but a number of AIB members including Don Sarah a past AIB National President who travelled from Adelaide. Don had remained a close friend of “Bill” from the commencement of their respective building careers. Our thoughts and prayers are especially with his wife Caroline, and their three daughters Lulu, Licky and Alex and the extended Cockram family at this time of condolence.

It was also sad news that our esteemed member from the WA Chapter, John Doust AM LFAIB passed away on Monday 22 July at the age of 87. John had recently attended the WA Chapter dinner, to present the John L Doust Annual Honorary Award for 2019 to Fraser Hudson for the Best Dissertation by a final year Curtin University Student of the Bachelor of Applied Science (Construction Management) Course. Our thoughts and prayers are especially with Benson (son) and Carina (daughter), as well as the extended family at this sad time of condolence.

Insurance Issues for industry

This week we have been invited to contribute to an industry round table to address the Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII) challenges currently facing the certifier / building surveyor sector. This important consultation process supports the working group in NSW led by John Tansey. States and Territories are finalising an options paper, led by NSW and Queensland, that will form the basis of the options for consultation.

The BMF has tasked Senior Officials with reporting back to the BMF on the outcomes of consultation on the options in September. This invitation comes directly off the recent BMF attendance by the AIB and I am looking forward to again work with Darren Pavic of BRIC on this important consultation as Indemnity Insurance changes are impacting many areas of our industry.

So, the AIB are clearly involved advocating for our membership as this unfolds.

Presidential duties in the last period has included:

  • Informal committee meeting with Gerry Keating the incoming QLD Chapter President and Sean Kelly the retiring QLD Chapter President to update on institute activities around the country;
  • Attending the QLD Chapter Awards dinner in Brisbane;
  • Attending the HK Chapter ACM, and industry group meetings in Hong Kong;
  • Attending Professional Interviews for members and fellow upgrades in both the HK Chapter and Macau Branch in Hong Kong and Macau;
  • Attending an informal update meeting with two SIBL board members in Singapore including briefing and promotion of the COW International Building conference in Sydney;
  • Attending a catch-up meeting with John Gelavis – Executive Director MBA WA and Greg Hughes;
  • Attending the WA Chapter awards presentations in Perth;
  • Attending a regulator introduction with meeting with Kevin Anderson and staff in Sydney;
  • Attending the NSW Chapter ACM in Sydney;
  • Attending a Building Ministers Forum meeting in Sydney;
  • Attending the VIC / TAS Chapter awards in Melbourne;
  • Attending the NSW Chapter awards in Sydney;
  • planning and teleconference meetings for the Institute as part of National Council governance;
  • meeting prospective partners to discuss initiative around AIB promotion;
  • Attending the funeral service for John Doust in Perth on behalf of the National Council.

Finally, the culmination of our Professional Excellence Awards program is just over 5 weeks away. The program this year sits in the middle of our international building conference Constructing our World in Sydney. We have this week listed two special offerings to allow you to capitalise on both the awards celebrations and the CPD opportunities within the conference.

These last-minute packages just released yesterday include a single Day + Dinner discount pass that gives you the choice to attend either Day 1 + Dinner or Dinner + Day 2. For busy builders who can’t take 4 days from a work week to enjoy the full program and site tour packages.

The second package is a corporate ticket to allow a business to share conference sessions among a group of individuals from the same company over the two-day program. A company with two tickets could effectively have 10 different individuals involved across the conference and dinner activities so no-one takes more than 4 hours out of their work week. All session materials and follow up information collected by attendees can also be distributed across the entire company after the conference.

Conference program details and bookings are made on-line using our secure platform provided by ConLog click here to go to the Constructing our World website.

Our program will cover the themes of People, Performance and Politics. Come on Day 1 to get some of the latest thinking that is transforming our building methodology around CPD – staying on top of your game, educating a workforce in South Africa, mental health in the workplace and strategic people planning that grows a business. Then the after-lunch program highlights process and innovation topic with a number of case studies and live examples of how the challenges in construction are being overcome by building smarter.

Day 2 opens with Politics and Finance information that includes the Financial Outlook in our Asia Pacific region presentation by James Kirby – Finance Journalist and Analyst. The New Zealand challenges, future of codes and standards and issues with government regulation as well as a panel discussion on the state of our industry and current regulation issues as impediments to building. The final session after lunch gathers the next generation of builders to offer their perspective from within our industry as recent entrants. Young Builders from Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Singapore will each share on the legacy they are receiving and why they accept or reject current practices in favour of being leaders in the next wave of successful building professionals.

This conference should not be missed, as it satisfies the majority of our annual CPD requirements in one place at one time. (an important yardstick for our regulators is active CPD on current industry and practice) We will also include updates on regulations and early advice we have received, through our work as advocates and contributors on behalf of the Building Industry in all building jurisdictions around Australia.

We are communicating regularly with those outside our professional network that an AIB member is a Chartered Building Professional who understands the need to deliver a consistent, professional service to both the building industry, and the end consumer.

This month, before the tickets are sold out, I would encourage busy builders to book and attend both the National Award Dinner, and at least one day of the International Constructing Our World Conference held in Sydney next month.

I am in Auckland next week with our CEO – Greg Hughes for our annual AIB and NZIOB planning and information meetings while attending the NZIOB Building Awards.

I look forward to seeing you soon at an AIB event!

David Burnell FAIB
National President, Australian Institute of Building

2019 NSW PROFESSIONAL EXCELLENCE IN BUILDING AWARDS RESULTS

The New South Wales Chapter held their Professional Excellence in Building Awards last Friday 26 July at Dockside Darling Harbour.

The night was packed with great entertainment, networking and celebrating the best in the industry. Check out the photos from the night here.

A special mention to the 2019 New South Wales Building Professional of the Year –  Michael Kilcar from Watpac Construction for ANSTO MO99 Nuclear Medicine Facility project.

 

 

 

 

The full list of NSW winners can be found here

2019 VIC PROFESSIONAL EXCELLENCE IN BUILDING AWARDS RESULTS

The Victorian Chapter held their Professional Excellence in Building Awards Friday 19 July at the RACV City Club.

The night was packed with great entertainment, networking and celebrating the best in the industry. Check out the photos from the night here.

A special mention to the 2019 Victorian Building Professional of the Year –  Edward Roydhouse from Lendlease for his One Melbourne Quarter project.

The full list of VIC winners can be found here

NATIONAL PRESIDENT’S UPDATE – BMF JULY

The AIB was invited to participate this week within a smaller group of Industry associations attending the Building Ministers Forum (BMF) in Sydney along with 11 other industry and employer groups as a follow up to the last meeting held in February 2019.

We had a short agenda which included presentations and discussions around Professional Indemnity insurance and Professional Standards. The second agenda item was to receive an update and report back on the Building Confidence Report Implementation.

I am happy to report that the meeting commenced with opening remarks from the Chair, The Hon Minister Karen Andrews MP, confirming a breakthrough with agreement on the eve of the meeting that included all states and territories committing to a high level of support for a national approach to implementation of the Building Confidence report.

Key points of agreement involve:

  • The Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) getting support to roll out the implementation of Shergold-Weir recommendations;
  • Ministers confirmed commitment to a national approach;
  • Recognition that States will continue to work in local jurisdictions in parallel to address and progress the paths to remediation already identified as issues needing attention now;
  • The new work plan for the ABCB is comprehensive and Industry Representation will be required to support the work of the Building Codes Board.

Other significant presentations around Professional Standards confirmed the requirement for better outcomes which involve industry associations having individuals who are committed to professional practice. The meeting encouraged all associations to stop an inward focus on members and grow an outward focused consumer outlook.

Industry Associations will only be part of the solution if they have features that strengthen the skills and support of members. There will be a need for professional standards being linked to registration of individuals. Monitored supervision and discipline mechanisms within associations will be needed to understand their member activity and gather data on the types of services being offered to the consumer.

Association governance and reliable data will play a part in the risks between clients, and consumers. This can then better inform the market around insurance matters, liability exposure and this conceptual change to focus on customers that will bring insurance premiums and excess levels into an area that allows better assessment by insurance providers.

The public is looking for businesses and individuals to have standards and ethics backed by data that produce improved standards of construction.

Professional Indemnity (PI) Insurance discussions involved the recognition that the reality for insurance providers currently is that every dollar collected in premiums when called on to respond to a problem pays out three times the premium collected. Insurance providers have therefore taken a view that the industry is unstable around confidence and this has led to the premium increases which reflect the recent claims history.

For PI insurance to remain viable the insurers and underwriters need real data and improved outcomes from industry. Insurance is provided to the market for specialist practitioners, building constructors and home owners on a prudential basis and the lack of data feeds into the market deterioration.

The Insurance Council representatives welcomed the news of a National Implementation around Building Confidence. A positive step is the news that state and territory action is occurring in parallel on rectification commencements in a climate that includes carved out for cladding exclusions. This improvement and action that de-risks any current installation will be a factor that encourages insurers to reassess and reduce premium and excess values for PI cover in the future that will be offered to practitioners.

I am encouraged that the discussions reflected the outline points offered by the AIB in February 2019 around the need for the BMF to tackle:

  • State and Federal ministers who work cooperatively as the lead regulators;
  • Universal adoption and use of NCC volumes 1-3 across all jurisdictions;
  • National Licencing for all building practitioners;
  • Adopting an industry wide approach to continuing professional development as a requirement for all licence holders.

The AIB looks forward to playing a continuing role in the new work of the ABCB implementation team and updating our earlier discussions with both Ministers and departments through their Senior Officers Group (SOG) and the Building Regulators Forum (BRF).

Finally, I have attached the communique from the federal government that highlights the work that is earmarked to be worked up with the Australia Building Codes Board (ABCB) over the coming months and beyond.

Also attached is the Australian Construction Industry Forum (ACIF) media release which was distributed today regarding events over the last couple of days. The AIB is not only a member of ACIF but significantly contributes to its public comment. ACIF is regularly picked up by both Australian and international media and is a strong voice for the profession.

I wish you a pleasant weekend,

National President
David Burnell FAIB 

NATIONAL PRESIDENT’S UPDATE

This has been a busy time for institute activities, the last three weeks have included attending the QLD Chapter – Professional Excellence Award dinner at the Pullman Hotel in Brisbane. I then travelled to Hong Kong for a 6 day stopover meeting up with the OS Chapter President – Norman Faifer and the CEO Greg Hughes. We completed a series of professional interviews over one and a half days in HK and the Macau Branch of the OS Chapter. We participated in the Annual Chapter Meeting to hear the Chapter year reports and see a new 2019 / 2020 committee installed, followed by a CPD presentation for the members. We hosted the 2nd Annual HK Chapter Awards which included both PEA projects and local education and student awards. As this was my first visit to the HK Chapter I was encouraged by the enthusiasm of our HK Chapter members. We also took the opportunity to catch up with kindred associations the HKICM and the HKICoW to discuss topics of closer association and event collaboration and we encouraged all building related connections to register for the Constructing our World Conference in Sydney.

I then travelled to Singapore for a 4 day stopover which allowed informal meetings with some of the SIBL board members who were available during this school holiday time in Singapore. Peter Chua and Henry Tee met with me to discuss the upcoming CoW program for Sydney. I provided supplementary materials and flyers for distribution by the Institute, and we discussed the forward planning timing for conference 3 of the CoW series scheduled in Singapore as part of our tri-partite conference agreement in 2021.

I then travelled to Perth for a 5 day stopover where Greg Hughes joined me to continue our industry representation discussions with the MBAWA Executive Director – John Gelavis. We also attended the WA Chapter Professional Excellence Awards dinner at the Westin in the Perth CBD. The change of venue, a full program and a great band at the end of official proceedings ensured that all attendees enjoyed a great night of celebration. (Photos of the night can be found here).

Insurance Issues for industry

We have now passed the 2nd July 2019 deadline on insurance and the reduction in cover and restrictions on Professional Indemnity [PI] insurance policies across the industry are a new reality for many members. Businesses and practitioners alike are still receiving a range of responses and unclear direction from all jurisdictions and the regulators responsible for the built environment.

NSW response to Shergold Weir Report

A NSW Chapter representative was able to attend the 2 July meeting at short notice to hear about the ‘Building Stronger Foundations’ discussion paper tabled recently by Kevin Anderson MP – Minister for Better Regulation and Innovation. The paper invites submissions from industry and community as part of the consultation process and the AIB will be providing a response with some input from the NSW Chapter by the closing date of 24 July 2019.

VBA has a new permit system

The Victorian Building Authority (VBA) has been preparing industry for important changes to Victoria’s building permit and levy laws, which commenced on 1 July 2019. These changes include the development of a new online platform for building permit number (BPN) applications, known as the Building Activity Management System (BAMS). So Building Practitioners and Owners have had just over a week of the new system in operation.

Advice from the VBA notes these Key Messages about the change:

  1. The VBA must issue a BPN before a relevant building surveyor (RBS) can issue a building permit.
  2. Building surveyors must provide all required information to the VBA, and the building permit levy must be paid, before the VBA will issue a BPN.
  3. Applicants are responsible for paying the levy; however, an RBS (or another nominated person) can pay the levy on an applicant’s behalf.
  4. Once a building permit is issued, the owner/applicant must monitor the cost of works and advise the VBA of the final cost of works.

We will update how this affects our Victorian members in coming eNews bulletins.

Advocate activities

We are scheduled to attend two important meetings in the next week:

  • The first is with Kevin Anderson MP – NSW Minister for Better Regulation and Innovation. The AIB will have two NSW Chapter representatives plus our CEO – Greg Hughes and myself.
  • The second is an invitation to the next Building Ministers Forum round table meeting. Topics include Professional Indemnity Insurance and an update of Building Confidence implementation progress.

So the AIB will clearly continue to advocate for our membership to help resolve the issue of Building Industry Confidence, Standards and Professional Practice, Insurance for Professionals and the pathway to bring these matters into a workable and sustainable system. Industry input is clearly needed part of the solution, and the AIB does have a unique and wide focus given the range of our members experience and expertise includes construction management, planning and project management, costs and quality management and tertiary level educators.

Presidential duties in the last period has included:

  • Attendance with QLD Chapter committee members to update on activities and programs around the country;
  • Attending the QLD Chapter Awards in Brisbane with a great event hosted at the Pullman Ballroom that increased the opportunity for industry networking;
  • Meeting with the HK Chapter members and attending professional interviews for prospective members;
  • Attendance at annual chapter meeting and CPD event to finalise the incoming Chapter committee;
  • Attendance and presentation of the HK Chapter Awards at a cocktail function event;
  • Formal meetings with HKICM and HKICoW committee members to advance discussions around CoW Conference and future collaborative opportunities;
  • Meeting with the Macau Branch members and attending professional interviews for prospective members;
  • Attending an informal meeting and CoW presentation during a short stop in Singapore to discuss the SIBL input and support for our upcoming International Building Conference scheduled in Sydney this September;
  • Attendance with the CEO for a meeting with MBAWA to update on WA building activities and programs of shared interest / benefit;
  • Attending the WA Chapter Awards in Perth with 200 guests enjoying both the education and professional excellence awards presentations and finishing the night with live band ‘Beautiful Noise’ a great event hosted at the a new venue this year that continued the opportunity for industry networking

We are actively committed to communicating with ministers, regulators and kindred building associations about the important distinction of our Institute. Our professional network of AIB members include many Chartered Building Professionals. The AIB is committed to individuals who hold professional standing, continuing CPD and ongoing education as key components that allow our members to deliver a consistent professional service to both the building industry and the end consumer.

This month I would encourage you to book to attend your local Chapter award dinner and start planning for the International Conference in Sydney this September. Conference program details and bookings can be found here.

So I look forward to seeing you soon at an AIB event soon with our Professional Excellence Awards presentations this month in VIC and NSW Chapters.

David Burnell FAIB
National President, Australian Institute of Building

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Photo Credit: David Broadway Photography by Julius Pang)