Electrical Contracting News (ECN) November 2016 - Page 41

HOME AUTOMATION & INTELLIGENT BUILDINGS SPECIAL FEATURE KEEPING UP WITH STANDARDS Matt Nimmons of CEDIA discusses everything electrical contractors need to know about industry standards and the importance of staying up to date with industry developments. W e all understand the importance of reputation. Facilities managers, contractors, and most of all, homeowners, are all sceptical of the ‘cowboy electrician’ – and rightly so. We’ve all heard the story of badly insulated wiring, light fixtures that don’t fit and wrong gauges installed. This is why knowledge and possession of codes of practice, accreditations and standards is paramount. certified in compliance with the appropriate technical rules and standards. The specifications and procedures outlined within these standards are designed to maximise the quality of electrical work, to ensure those carrying out electrical work are qualified and proficient and to safeguard consumer safety. These standards ban traders in all sectors from using unfair commercial practices towards consumers. Those who comply are provided with a trust mark, quality mark or equivalent to display and assure customers they are a trusted and reliable tradesman. What are industry standards? What happens if you fail to Industry standards are published follow industry standards? documents, established by the sector’s experts, associations and trade bodies to protect the interests of employees and end users through a clear and structured regulatory system. This allows electrical works to be carried out, tested and Failing to follow industry standards can result in serious consequences, such as penalty charges, losing the right to continue work within this trade and even the liquidation of a business. Other ‘The smart home market in the UK is expected to show a revenue growth of 57.4 per cent in 2016.’ side effects of failing to follow industry standards include: • Compromised employee safety – the risk to life and limb can be significant when working with electrical systems and equipment. Most regulations will state employers are responsible for ensuring and maintaining a safe environment for employees and technicians. • Damage to equipment – electrical systems require care and attention to ensure safe, optimal performance. Complying with industry regulations keep equipment operating at or near its designed conditions so that it will efficiently deliver the performance required when needed. Rising technology means rising standards In the last two years, the smart home industry has grown exponentially. In fact, recent findings from Statista, the statistics portal, has found the smart November 2016 | 41 41-42 HA&IB – CEDIA.indd 41 13/10/2016 15:19