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February 2018 Edition

 

CEO Report: In Full Swing

In Conversation with Boris Iskra

It’s Coming! The New and Improved standards.org.au

2018 Standards Awards Nominations Now Open

Submit Your Proposal Today

Standards Australia Nationwide Seminars Continue

The Future of ASEAN and Australian Digital Trade

Managing ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 Certification

 

New edition of SG-006, Rules for the Structure and Drafting of Australian Standards

Announcing 2 New Learning Programs in the Academy

Format Changes for Publications and Working Drafts

International Update

Sector Updates

Drafts Open for Comment

Growth in Double Certification

CEO Report: In Full Swing


 
With February almost at an end there is no doubt that 2018 is pushing along with vim and vigour.

At the time of writing we are halfway through our nationwide stakeholder seminars which are running in each capital city.

It's been great that so many contributors have been able to join us for the seminars. For us, understanding our contributors’ challenges and opportunities is as important as being able to share what we’re doing to build an even stronger and better Standards Australia.

Our new website will launch by the end of February representing months of work from our team, and from many of you who have worked with us to bring it together. We think you will be as delighted as we are with the website we launch in this first phase. And we are even more excited that this initial launch site will become a platform to build on as we continue our digital journey.

Our Technical Governance Review is also coming to the end of phase one and Cameron Ralph Khoury, the independent governance experts, gave our Board a briefing on the preliminary findings last week. A final report is being prepared and will be released in the coming weeks. For us, the release of the report is not the end of the work.

There will be a further round of consultations on the implementation plan of the findings; a top priority for us this year.

One of our most anticipated digital projects, the contributor portal, has now commenced. This is our first phase “hub replacement” initiative that will help us in making the contributor experience more intuitive and simpler. The first phase will deliver a new dashboard, with subsequent releases expected over the year, delivering on many of the functionalities you have told us are needed. In order to ensure the success of this project, we will be working very closely with a group of committee members as the design and development work progresses.

These initiatives complement the work being done in the “engine rooms” of Standards Australia, our committees, who are back in full swing after the holiday season.

You’ll see below that the 2018 Standards Awards are now open and we look forward to your submissions in the coming weeks. I look forward to the Standards Awards each year because it reaffirms what a committed and engaged community we have working with us in the national interest.

Thank you all and please head to our website next week. I am confident you will find it fresh and easy to use.

—Dr Bronwyn Evans, CEO

In Conversation with Boris Iskra


 
Boris Iskra has over 25 years of direct involvement with the Australian forest and wood products sector. As the National Manager – Codes & Standards at Forest & Wood Products Australia Ltd (FWPA), his role is to coordinate the development and review of Australian timber standards (and associated building standards and codes). Boris is the FWPA representative on Standards Australia’s timber committees and related building committees.

Standards Australia: What role do standards play in the timber sector?
Boris Iskra: Standards play a crucial role in the timber sector: from certifying sustainable forest management practices to grading timber products; from producing engineered wood products through to the design and construction of timber buildings. Standards are used throughout the supply and construction chains.

SA: Tell us about the relationship between the timber sector, standards and the National Construction Code. How is this relationship changing?
BI: There are a number of timber standards that are primary referenced documents within the National Construction Code (NCC) which are key for the timber sector. These relate to aspects such as building domestic housing through to designing exposed timber elements for fire effects using natural charring properties. AS 1720.1, Timber structures – Design methods, enables the design of taller timber buildings up to 8 storeys in height as now permitted as a deemed-to-satisfy solution by the NCC, for certain classes of buildings.

SA: What challenges is your sector facing?
BI: As with most sectors, having the personnel and technical capacity to maintain and develop existing, as well as new standards, is a major challenge. The lack of available human and financial resources is placing ever increasing pressure on limited resources. Standards Australia’s Young Leaders Program is a great way to attract and support new ‘entrants’ into the development of standards.

SA: What do you think is in the future of standards development?
BI: FWPA actively supports and participates in the development of international timber standards via ISO as we believe we cannot work in isolation. We are part of the global market and we must think globally.

It’s Coming! The New and Improved standards.org.au


 
We are very excited to announce the launch of our new website next week.

With a modern content management system (CMS), the website will be simpler to navigate, faster to find relevant information and provide for a better user experience for our members, the public and Standards Australia staff.

Once the website goes live, we would appreciate your feedback to help us provide the best user experience possible.

2018 Standards Awards Nominations Now Open


Nominations close: Thursday 22 March 2018 5:00pm AEDT

 
The 2018 Standards Awards are now open for entry. Nominations will be accepted for individuals and committees of Standards Australia and accredited standards development organisations.

This year, in addition to our well established categories:

W.R. Hebblewhite Medal;
Meritorious Contribution Award – National;
Meritorious Contribution Award – International;
Emerging Leader Award; and
Outstanding Committee Award,

We are pleased to announce the creation of a new award category to recognise those who have championed innovation in standards:

Innovation Award

More information about the Standards Awards, including the nomination form and details on the award categories, can be found on our website.

Submit Your Proposal Today


We are accepting project proposals for new or revised standards until 5pm Wednesday 7 March 2018.

Detailed information can be found on our website:
Proposing a Project: http://bit.ly/Proposing-a-project
Project Proposal form: http://bit.ly/SA-project-proposal (Word Doc).
Please ensure you use version 4.1, issued on 28 March 2017
Guide to Net Benefit: http://bit.ly/SA-Net-Benefit
Prioritisation and selection of projects: http://bit.ly/SA-Prioritisation

If you have questions we encourage you to contact a Stakeholder Engagement Manager.

Standards Australia Nationwide Seminars Continue


Our Stakeholder Engagement Managers are traveling across the country providing an overview of Standards Australia and our strategic vision, insights on how standards are developed and how you can get involved, international standards development activity, and standards development organisation accreditation pathways. Thank you to everyone that has attended. We still have two more cities to visit so we hope to see you there! Questions can be emailed to sem@standards.org.au

Upcoming seminars
Perth, 28 February
Register →
Adelaide, 7 March
Register →

The Future of ASEAN and Australian Digital Trade


 
Members of the public are being encouraged to shape the future of Australia’s digital trade efforts by providing comment through the ASEAN-Australia Digital Trade Survey. Results of the survey will contribute to a Digital Trade Discussion Paper, a Digital Trade Standards Workshop and a final recommendations paper being provided to the Australian Government.

Open the survey (closes Monday 26 March 2018).
Learn more in our media release (PDF).

Managing ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 Certification


The Joint Accreditation System of Australia and New Zealand (JAS-ANZ) has recently issued an update to provide clarity around the management of ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015 certification.

The use of the ‘process approach’ to develop a quality management system is now a mandatory requirement in ISO 9001:2015 and one of the most important aspects when developing and certifying a quality management system (QMS). JAS-ANZ’s guidance outlines the importance of determining, developing and implementing a process-based QMS that supports specific operational requirements, rather than focusing on a clause by clause assessment.

Contributor Corner

New edition of SG-006, Rules for the Structure and Drafting of Australian Standards


The revisions to SG-006, Rules for the Structure and Drafting of Australian Standards, are now published following four weeks of public consultation and extensive internal review. The key changes for Australian Standards include:

Clear separation of normative and informative references: A general reference clause or appendix containing a mixture of references will no longer be permitted.
Use of modified Australian Standards: When adopting an International Standard, any relevant normative references shall refer to modified Australian adoptions.
A helpful checklist for drafting can be found in Appendix A.

Standards Australia’s Publishing Services team will work with committees to apply these changes. The changes will be applied to all Australian Standards and Joint Australian/New Zealand Standards which have not been through Public Comment by February 2018.

SG-006 is available on our website (PDF). Standards Australia thanks the committees and drafting leaders who participated in the pilot program.

Announcing 2 New Learning Programs in the Academy


How to prepare an Australian Standard for reference in the National Construction Code (NCC)

 
Watch the preview
 
Watch the preview
Are you a member of a committee developing Australian Standards for NCC consideration? Complete this learning program, developed in collaboration with the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB), to understand where Australian Standards fit with the NCC, the referenced document processes involved, as well as making sure the standard is suitable for reference in the NCC.

Understanding standards writing, conformance and conformity assessment

You’ve set the benchmarks in your standard, but are you worried about how well they will be implemented and how users can demonstrate that they have conformed with the standard? This learning program was developed to deliver tailored learning about when, where and how conformity assessment requirements can be placed when writing standards. This makes it easier for you and your committee to navigate the drafting rules for Australian Standards, ensuring your published standard is suitable for use.

Want to get started?

Make sure you have your Hub log-in details ready, and click here to enter the Academy. Click on the Learning Programs tile on the right hand side, where you can browse all of our learning programs available. We are interested in your feedback, so please email us at academy@standards.org.au

Format Changes for Publications and Working Drafts


Australian Standards and other documents published in PDF by Standards Australia are gaining a new layout. The layout is based on International Standards and includes accessibility features for those with vision impairments.

Last year we launched a simplified drafting template for new documents. This tool will now be used for revisions and amendments as well.

Your Project Manager will introduce the template in your next kick-off meeting if your committee has not used it previously. FAQs and further training are available where needed.

The template allows committees to focus on the content. All of the formatting is now handled by our XML-based publishing tools, meaning the layout of the draft does not reflect the final appearance.

Drafts released for public comment also have new covers and clearer instructions for users.

Updates

International Update


Standards Australia represents Australia on the two major international standards development bodies, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Our activities are reported on our International Updates page.

Highlights from January 2018 (PDF):

Australia initiates WTO complaint targeting Canadian restrictions on sale of wine
Fresh changes in the pipeline – Standards for water supply and wastewater systems
IEC IEEE KATS Challenge – Future Challenges in Standardisation

Sector Updates

Read about the latest standards development news in your industry sector on our Sector Updates page.

Drafts Open for Comment

The public comment process provides an opportunity for stakeholders and members of the public to make valuable contributions. View draft standards currently open for comment.

SDO News: reports from other developers of Australian Standards

Growth in Double Certification


There has been a further increase in double certified forest area in absolute terms, according to PEFC and FSC, the two global forest certification systems.

While the total global certified area grew between December 2016 and June 2017 by 3.7 million ha, the double certified area increased by almost 1 million ha, or 25% of the growth.

In total, 431.4 million ha of forests were certified to either PEFC or FSC standards in mid-2017 (2016: 427.7) of which 71.1 million ha, or 16.5%, was double certified (2016: 70.1 million/16.5%).

“This is at odds with our common objective to expand sustainable forest management,” says Ben Gunneberg, CEO of PEFC International.

“Every single hectare of double-certified forest area is a hectare too much,” he said.

“One cause of double certification is market access, and here companies have a role to play: by accepting both PEFC and FSC, they remove the pressure on forest owners to double certify.

“In turn, this will help precious financial resources to be focused on expanding certification to forests that are not yet certified to either system.”