In addition, from April 1st 2013, the NICEIC and ELECSA will be operated by a brand new organisation called Certsure for the good of its customers, giving the industry a stronger voice to government and major stakeholders on relevant issues.
The partnership will bring many benefits to NICEIC and ELECSA registrants. The first is the creation of the register, which will be the definitive searchable database of NICEIC and ELECSA registered contractors, as well as ECA members, promoted to hundreds of thousands of specifiers by the trade association and the charity.
“This partnership marks a new beginning for the electrical contracting industry.” explained Paul McNaughton, president of the ECA. “There is strength in unity and this alliance unites the key electrical industry players – the sector trade association, the electrical consumer charity and the leading certification body, while providing clarity to the consumer and a consolidated voice to government on common issues.”
Speaking at a launch event held in London to herald the new partnership, the ECA’s Steve Bratt commented, “Last year saw the launch of the 2021 Vision, and that presented us with a number of challenges and opportunities. We spent a lot of time talking about how the industry should get together and deal with the issues we face. So I’m delighted to be able to announce a partnership which we believe will have a very positive long term effect on our industry.
“Today is one of the defining and historic moments for the industry as the Electrical Safety Register will help strengthen the industry and give positive support to the electrical safety agenda and assist the ESC in taking its messages forward to the public.” – Phil Buckle, director general, ESC
“The ECA and the ESC have got together to create the Electrical Safety Register, which will be a searchable database of quality electrical contractors and will also include ECA members. But more than that we’re also creating a partnership and from April next year the NICEIC and ELECSA will be operated by a new joint venture company which will be owned by the ECA and ESC. That company will be called Certsure and it will be an equally owned and equally governed company that will take onboard the operations of those businesses and run them in a joined-up and focused way. We believe that this will provide unity for the sector and simplicity for our clients and consumers, and we also believe it will provide benefits for the contractors.
“These actions show that we have listened. We’ve listened to government who want industry to solve its own issues, we’ve listened to consumers who want one place to go to find competent electricians, and we’ve listened to our customers – we’re united in their interests and we intend to influence the development of our industry for their benefit.
The ESC’s director general Phil Buckle added, “Today is one of the defining and historic moments for the industry as the Electrical Safety Register will help strengthen the industry and give positive support to the electrical safety agenda and assist the ESC in taking its messages forward to the public. The formation of the register sees 80% of electrical contractors in one place. That’s always a challenge for the ESC in terms of how we get the public to use a properly registered and qualified electrician. Now, we can help the public by pointing them to this one place, which is well promoted, well supported and captures our ethos and values in terms of qualification and ongoing assessment.
“Funding is also a challenge for the ESC in these days of economic turmoil – we tend to rely heavily on our trading organisation, Ascertiva, but now, with the joint venture partnership, we will see over the medium term, funding to the ESC increase. This will give us more opportunity to support vulnerable people, through grants schemes such as our Fire Safety Scheme and our Home Safety Scheme. Over the last three years, through the support that Ascertiva have provided, we’ve managed to give out over £600,000 to other agencies to support the public, fire and rescue services and trading standards organisations, so this represents an opportunity to do even more for the community that we will live in.
“By joining together with the ECA in this partnership, the charity can make the Electrical Safety Register the definitive place to find an electrician and that will help our electrical safety agenda because we can get out there and truly help the public make sure they get a properly qualified electrician and not use somebody who could leave them in an unsafe situation.
The main goal of the new partnership is to provide benefits to the customer, as Certsure’s CEO Emma Clancy explained, “This is a proud moment for all the team that has worked on this partnership. Everybody across all of the organisations involved has pulled together and has been motivated by the vision and opportunity that it represents.
“The spirit of collaboration for the good of the customer has been fantastic. It is the customer that was at the start of this process and it’s they who are at the heart of the partnership we are building. The good news is that they don’t have to do anything. To enjoy the same services tomorrow as they do today, they need do nothing so in that sense there has been no changes – we want to make this as easy as possible.
“This is a proud moment for all the team that has worked on this partnership. Everybody across all of the organisations involved has pulled together and has been motivated by the vision and opportunity that it represents.” – Emma Clancy, CEO, Certsure
“However, while it is the same in that sense, it’s also going to be a lot better. We have ideas and a programme of benefits that we will be drip-feeding to our customers over the forthcoming months and years, as this is a stable and permanent partnership with long term commitment. From the outset Certsure is going to be making a number of promises. The first one is around promotion – we believe in the work of our customers and we will promote them to their customers in a number of ways, therefore helping them to get business and prove that they’re the best in class.
“We’re also going to deliver excellent customer service by listening and being fair in everything that we do. And we’re going to help them technically and raise standards across the organisation with our partners and within the framework operated by the ESC and ECA – we know that is something that’s very important to our customers and something that they very much value. We will also be providing simple, cost effective and relevant solutions to them to help them grow their business.
“There will be a number of benefits to being a customer of Certsure. The first one of which is inclusion on the register which we will work hard to promote in a number of ways. We’re also going to harmonise fees downwards for those that would otherwise have ended up paying more. Lastly, certainly in the early days, we’re going to offer a free training course in a new area so that our customers can diversify their businesses in the way that we’re also growing ours.
“This is just the beginning, and perhaps with a nod to the research that was launched last year, we’re going to become the building services certification business of choice. We’re going to help our customers grow their business into new areas whatever they may be. We’re going to be there for them to offer that help and support as we grow Certsure accordingly.”