15 July, 2024

Working for the industry

01 February, 2019

By Vanda Jones, executive director, BCAS.

In this period of transition, as the Brexit debate draws to an uncertain conclusion, the role of the trade association is vital in delivering practical and impartial advice to UK industry.

Working hard in support of the sector it represents, a trade association will seek to improve standards, raise safety, provide training and encourage research as well as acting as a counterpoint to evolving government policies.

Here, we provide a brief overview of the role of the British Compressed Air Society (BCAS) and how it works to support its members – from distributors, to manufacturers through to end users.

The role of BCAS

BCAS is the UK’s sole trade association representing the interests of the vacuum and pressure industry.

The society has been in existence since 1930 and has an enormous amount of strength; and this strength lies in the sum of its parts. There is a dynamic board of Directors - all senior people from leading businesses who give generously of their time to support the industry in numerous ways. From attending board meetings, to chairing committees, to working alongside our partners at Pneurop to providing technical and business support to our members.

For example, in the absence of a regulatory code for businesses to adhere to, BCAS operates a code of conduct that all of its members sign up to on an annual basis. This can form part of an end user’s supplier audit and act as a minimum standard that the organisation is expected to meet.

Most trade associations work on improvements in quality, health, safety, environmental practices and help set common technical standards for products or for methodologies of working. This can result in the publication of guidelines, information notes, codes of practice, and providing education and training for the industry They also provide a point of reference for their members and act as an important information source; information which is often exclusive to their membership.

Why should I use a trade association member?

First and foremost, a trade association logo on any company documentation is a sign of a reputable and trustworthy organisation. Membership of an association is a commercial decision for the business and a sign that the supplier is serious about providing good value and reputable service alongside other like-minded organisations.

It provides guarantees that the supplier will be working to an adopted and managed standard, helping to provide assurances to the end-user.

It also means that there is somewhere to go for advice and help if things go wrong. A complaints process can help resolve the problem effectively, with the trade body acting as a mediator between the customer and the member organisation if necessary.

In conclusion

To realise new growth potential through the Brexit process, industry needs certainty and continuity, particularly in relation to regulations and standards. This will help organisations to continue trading, innovating and growing and is where BCAS continues to play a key role.

BCAS is key member of the EURIS Taskforce, an advisory body that examines the potential impacts of the changing relationship between the UK and EU for the UK Government, manufacturers and the media.

When you consider that compressed air is such a vital component in modern industry, it clearly pays to use a BCAS member to deliver the reliable service and support required.

The BCAS website includes a dedicated ‘Find a member’ area where customers can search for a BCAS member by region, by product or by services provided. Visit www.bcas.org.uk to search for a BCAS member.

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