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Why Product Traceability Matters

November 2021
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Heather Cameron

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        This month in our 4 Questions interview, we spoke to Adam Turk, CEO of Siderise, which provides innovative insulation solutions for fire, acoustic, and thermal applications internationally.

        With the surge of digitisation within the construction industry, we spoke to Adam about the company’s adoption of the new BSI Identify system – an innovation set to make a significant impact on the building materials’ sector.

        Adam has not only been involved in the development of the Code for Construction Product Information (CCPI) as the Chair of the CPA’s Marketing Integrity Group, Siderise has also been an early adopter of the innovative BSI Identify programme.

        After reading Adam’s interview, find out more about BSI Identify and the industry leaders who are spearheading the programme.

        As well as CEO of Siderise, you are also Chair of the CPA’s Marketing Integrity Group. How will the newly published Code for Construction Product Information ensure more clarity for buildings’ engineers?

        The new Code for Construction Product Information was designed to re-instill trust by those that use construction product information, that they could rely on it for the work that they’re doing.

        The Code has five acid tests that it seeks to meet: all construction product information should be clear, accurate, accessible, up to date and unambiguous. In so doing, if you’re using construction product information to design, in your engineering drawings, on site, if the company that you’re working with is code verified, that you can rely on that information, you can trust it and that you know it will be clear, accurate etc.

        I think it’s really important that we instill this confidence back into the supply chain that construction product manufacturers are providing trustworthy information.

        As an early adopter of the system, can you explain how BSI’s Identify will help to create a safer industry?
        When we first heard about the BSI Identify programme, we were really keen to get involved. Siderise is an innovator; we’re always an adopter of new technology.

        Quite often on site you have people who are working with products and they’re not sure what product they have in their hand: “Have I got the one that goes here, or is it the one that goes there?”. The idea of the BSI Identify programme is wherever you are with that product, you can take a snapshot of the QR code with your mobile device and it will immediately take you to the product technical data sheet. You can see exactly what product it is, you can answer any questions about it, you can see installation advice etc.

        It’s important we understand there is a lot of time designing buildings in nice, warm environments but somebody installing it is often in a cold environment on a building site and they just want to be certain what they’re using is exactly what it should be. BSI Identify gives you that certainty, you know exactly what product you’re holding and exactly where that product’s supposed to go. I think it’s a fantastic initiative and I think it will make a big difference to the safety of our buildings by ensuring they’re constructed correctly.

        I think the BSI Identify programme is so simple, it’s a shame we never thought about it years ago. It’s really good that BSI has taken this on because it’s a body that has a huge amount of respect in the industry, so it gives a lot of credibility to what’s being done. You’re not going to have the issue of the VHS vs Betamax argument – BSI are going to do it and that’s it. The whole principal of properly marking products in this way, using modern technology i.e the QR code, is a brilliant one.

        We were really excited when we heard BSI were doing it and we were delighted to get involved and be an early adopter. I’m excited to see how this is going to impact the industry alongside a number of other initiatives coming through, not least of which as you mentioned, the new Code for Construction Product Information. So get the QR code, know you can trust the information – great combination.

        How do you see BSI Identify impacting the construction industry? Are there any barriers to adoption?

        With BSI Identify, the main impact on the construction industry is the accessibility of information and I think it will ensure a much higher level of accuracy – we need to ensure that what was built is what was designed and BSI Identify really gives you that. It also gives you a lot of help later on in the project. If you’re doing maintenance work, if you’re coming to replace a product, again you can see exactly what product you’ve got there and you know exactly what you need to do with it. So for impacting the construction industry, it adds a lot more certainty to what you’re doing.

        For barriers to adoption, when we first started looking at putting QR codes on our products, I could see everyone in the room going “crikey, how are we going to do that?”. But when you break it down, it’s pretty straightforward, it just needs a bit of application. Once we did it, it was straightforward to do. The only barrier to adoption is people’s willingness to get on and do it and I’m positive the industry will adopt it very quickly.

        In your webinar next month, what will you be covering?

        One of the things we’ll be talking about with particular relevance to BSI Identify is the importance of traceability – the importance of being able to trace products all through the project at whatever point you are in the life of the project. If you’ve got the QR code on the product then at any point in time, you know the product, what’s being used and what’s been installed etc. So that importance of traceability, something the construction industry’s not been good at historically, will really come to the fore.

        We will be talking about different times in which the QR code can come into being. It even comes down to things like storage on site when someone questions “Can I store these inside or outside? Do they need to be in a warm environment? I’m not sure, I’ll click the QR code on my phone and it tells me it’s ok stored outside,” it’s that kind of thing.

        This whole importance of traceability and understanding the product will come to the fore and I’m really looking forward to the debate in the webinar. We’ve got a really good panel and we’ll have some really good conversations. There’s myself, I know Dagan Herculson of Berkeley Homes is on the panel and I know Dagan quite well. I don’t know the other people but it’s a nice mix, so we’ll have some good conversations there.

        Why Product Traceability Matters Webinar, 2nd Dec 2021, 11am

        To find out more about the BSI Identify initiative, how it works and how it will impact the construction industry, register for the upcoming webinar.

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        About the author

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        Heather Cameron

        Client Success Marketing Executive at Barbour ABI

        Heather has worked for Barbour ABI since March 2020. She joined the Marketing Team to fulfil a new role within the business as Client Success Marketing Executive. Heather focuses on enhancing and developing communication with Barbour ABI clients and has introduced several strategies that utilise varying media.

        In addition to her main role, Heather also helps manage the internal communication with Barbour ABI staff, as well as being one of the Data Protection Managers.

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          This individual would like to be kept up to date with the latest information about Barbour ABI and other related products and services
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