Ai Group's Standards and Regulatory Services (SRS) team manages four key areas: 

  • Standards engagement: Technical engagement, on behalf of members, with Standards Australia (we have approximately 260 members participating on 400 committees) to create the opportunity for our members to influence standards development; 
  • Regulatory advocacy: Advocacy to regulators and policy makers on the building, plumbing and electrical products sector (we have seats on the ABCB Plumbing Code Committee and Building Code Committee);
  • Non-conforming product: The non-conforming building products project (we chair and provide a joint secretariat for the Construction Product Alliance);
  • Managed forums  - the team also provides technical support for our Managed Forums including the Grates and Access Covers Alliance; Australian Filtration & Water Treatment Forum; Australian Water Heating Forum; and Modular Building Industry Forum. 

Standards 

Ai Group is recognised as a leading contributor and supporter to the standards ecosystem through its formal involvement and collaboration with Standards Australia. Ai Group has staff and members involved with Standards Australia at many levels including the Board, Council and technical committees. 

Ai Group holds over 700 positions on more than 400 Standards Australia technical committees involving over 270 nominees. In addition to industry representation, the technical committees also include representatives from Government, regulators, academia, unions, consumers and other stakeholders. Positions on main technical committees are held by nominating organisations to ensure that a broad base of stakeholders are represented. 

Ai Group's Standards Services team has developed an Ai Group Standards Committee Representative Handbook. This document covers a range of relevant matters including policy on standards development, requirements for representatives, selection process, requirements for Project Proposals, issues escalation and other relevant information. We encourage our committee representatives to be familiar with it – the document can be downloaded here. 

If you wish to be involved in a standards committee or wish further information please contact Ai Group by emailing info@aigroup.com.au or contact James Thomson, our Senior Adviser, Standards and Regulation

Regulation 

Ai Group provides advocacy to Government and regulators on a number of key regulations including: 

  • Electrical Equipment Safety System (EESS), 
  • Greenhouse Emissions Minimum Standards (GEMS) system, 
  • Water Efficiency Labelling Scheme (WELS), 
  • Water Mark Certification Scheme (WMCS) and the 
  • National Construction Code (NCC). 

Non-conforming Product 

Non-conforming product is an issue facing many manufactures and importers.  These companies that conform to relevant standards and regulations can be at a competitive disadvantage when the price at which a competing product is sold reflects lower levels of attention to the quality that is required under Australia's conformance framework. 

In order to address this situation Ai Group has taken a number of actions on behalf of members: 

  • 2016 – working with member sub-sectors on specific NCP initiatives
  • 2016 – submission to the Senior Officials Group (BMF SOG) through the Alliance
  • 2015 – appeared before the Building Ministers Forum
  • 2015 – appeared before the Senate Enquiry into non-conforming building product
  • 2014 – formed the Construction Product Alliance to engage with industry
  • 2014 – hosted an industry wide workshop to examine the issue
  • 2013 – released the report "The quest for a level playing field: the non-conforming products dilemma"

To stay abreast of industry action on non-conforming product please see here. Note that Ai Group holds the Chair and Joint Chair positions of the Construction Product Alliance. 

Links to Technical Infrastructure Organisations 

Standards Australia 

Standards Australia is the nation's peak non-government Standards organisation. It is charged by the Commonwealth Government to meet Australia's need for contemporary, internationally aligned Standards and related services. The work of Standards Australia enhances the nation's economic efficiency, international competitiveness and contributes to community demand for a safe and sustainable environment. It leads and promotes a respected and unbiased Standards development process ensuring all competing interests are heard, their points of view considered and consensus reached. 

ISO 

ISO (International Organization for Standardization) is the world's largest developer of voluntary International Standards. International Standards give state of the art specifications for products, services and good practice, helping to make industry more efficient and effective. Developed through global consensus, they help to break down barriers to international trade. 

IEC 

Founded in 1906, the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) is the world's leading organization for the preparation and publication of International Standards for all electrical, electronic and related technologies. These are known collectively as "electrotechnology". 

JASANZ 

JAS-ANZ is the government-appointed accreditation body for Australia and New Zealand responsible for providing accreditation of conformity assessment bodies (CABs) in the fields of certification and inspection. Accreditation by JAS-ANZ demonstrates the competence and independence of these CABs. 

NATA 

NATA is the authority that provides independent assurance of technical competence through a proven network of best practice industry experts for customers who require confidence in the delivery of their products and services. NATA provides assessment, accreditation and training services to laboratories and technical facilities throughout Australia and internationally. 

James Thomson
James is a Senior Adviser – Standards and Regulation with Ai Group. He currently manages the secretariat of the Construction Products Alliance responsible for the Non-Conforming Products project. His previous role was as a National Sector Manager at Standards Australia. He holds a degree in Electrical Engineering and a Masters in Professional Accounting.

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