Season's greetings, end-of-year reflections and AMCA office hours

Published: 20 December 2018

As this is our last News Brief for 2018, we’d like to take this opportunity to thank all our members for their ongoing support—and to reflect on some of the activities and achievements the AMCA has pursued on behalf of members this year. 

Much of our focus has been aimed at helping members deal with the key findings of our Survive and Prosper Research Report, released at last year’s National Conference; namely—  

  • Pressures resulting from tightening margins;
  • Risks arising from the behaviours and practices of builders;
  • Concerns about the quality and supply of skills;
  • Challenges with the adoption and integration of new technologies; and
  • Members’ preparedness and capacity for change.

In May, we established a new Contracts Working Group to inform our policy and advocacy activities on subjects such as government procurement, standard form contacts and security of payment. It will also help to identify training and education needs to develop the capacity of members when negotiating outcomes with builders, and AMCA South Australia has already taken the lead in this area with their Contract Terms & Risk Management for Subcontractors course. 

In July, we secured re-accreditation as a Registered Training Organisation for a further seven years, validating the quality of our nationally accredited Project Management and Drafting qualifications and ensuring all our courses are delivered to the same high standard. 

Throughout the year we have been active participants in policy discussions regarding skill development. This includes our involvement on the Technical Advisory Groups responsible for the review and redevelopment of the Electrotechnology and Plumbing Training Packages, as well as engagement with policymakers at both the state and national level on issues relating to vocational education and training and skills more broadly.

In August, we hosted our ninth annual Construction Innovation Forum, giving our members unparalleled insight into the practices of global leaders in building and construction. The forum also provides an opportunity for us to share the progress being made by our BIM-MEPAUS initiative on standard development, ensuring AMCA members are at the forefront of BIM adoption in Australia.

Our role in creating awareness with government about the importance of digitally-enabled construction was confirmed with the release of the Queensland Government’s BIM Principles and the Victorian Government’s Digital Asset Strategy. The AMCA in both states met with policy makers over several years to lobby for such policy leadership, and we look forward to working with both governments as they move into the implementation phase. 

As always, we’ve tried to work with other industry groups to achieve shared goals. This year we were pleased to support AIRAH in the redevelopment of the DA19 HVAC Maintenance Manual, as well as Standards Australia as they begin the process of developing a commissioning standard. 

Improving our communication with members has also been a focus this year with the relaunch of our website in July and the ongoing role out of a new client relationship management system. These tools will help improve the member experience, streamline our communication activities, and will help facilitate delivery of a range of members’ only resources via the website in 2019.

Of course, many of the challenges and risks faced by AMCA members are systemic and beyond the control of individual businesses. For this reason, the AMCA continues to pursue a strong policy and advocacy agenda—underpinned by the release earlier this year of our National Policy Positions—to ensure the interests of members are represented at the highest levels of government. 

In August, the AMCA had the opportunity to speak directly with State and Commonwealth Ministers at the Building Ministers’ Forum, where we encouraged them to pursue all recommendations contained in the Review of Security of Payment Laws Report, and highlighted the impact that unfair contract and procurement arrangements can have on the quality and overall performance of buildings. 

Looking ahead, we will continue to revise and update our suite of services based on member feedback and are excited to tackle the challenges a new year presents. 

On behalf of the AMCA and all our staff across the country, we wish all members and their families a safe, happy and restful Christmas and New Year.

 

AMCA Office Hours

ACT:   Close Monday, 24 December; Re-open Monday, 7 January
NSW:   Close Friday, 21 December; Re-open Monday, 7 January
QLD:   Close Friday, 21 December; Re-open Monday, 7 January
SA:   Close Wednesday, 19  December; Re-open Monday, 14 January
TAS:   Close Friday, 21 December; Re-open Monday, 7 January
VIC:   Close Friday, 21 December; Re-open Monday, 7 January
WA:   Close Friday, 21 December; Re-open Monday, 7 January