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NZ Tilers Forum Do We Need A Tiling Association?

Discussion in 'NZ Tilers Forum' started by Bob Neary, Oct 5, 2012.

  1. Frank

    Frank New Contributor

    The first thing you need to work out is what are the Association's objectives.

    If the main objective is to create an Association where only the top tier tilers can join, then you need to figure out how to vet applicants objectively. I think you'll find this will be the hardest thing to do. The risk you run with this sort of organisation is that it can very quickly become an "Old Boys Club", where existing members say: "Sorry you're not good enough." and potential members can look at it and say: "Who are you to tell me if I'm good enough?" and don't bother even applying. The other downside is that to do ongoing audits of members could be prohibitively expensive.

    My personal opinion is that an Industry Association set up for that purpose is fundamentally flawed and it will probably only ever attract a small number of members.

    Option number 2 is that the Association's main objective is to improve the industry by developing training programs and developing best practice guidelines. In this case, membership needs to be open to anyone who is working in the industry. What you can do then is to put an "Accreditation System" in place, which separates Members from "Accredited Members".

    There are a number of ways you can do this and we are currently working with TAFE schools and adhesive and product manufacturers on the best way to set this up and facilitate the training. Incidentally, the support from TAFE has been incredibly good. The national body looking after building industry training packages has also been very supportive of this system.

    I hate to say it, but I think the Americans have it pretty much nailed it and the AMTA is looking into setting up a similar system.

    The Americans have set up a Ceramic Tile Education Foundation and using funding from that, the NTCA and the TCNA have set up a Certified Tile Installer program. Testing includes a 155 question Technical Proficiency Exam and also a hands on test to gain initial certification. From what I hear, more than 500 tilers have already done this training.
  2. Bob Neary

    Bob Neary Tiling Forum Moderator Staff Member

    I don't think it should ever be a matter of other tilers telling other tilers that they are not good enough to join. But let the industry itself choose who deserves registered membership. After all it should never be some sort of club as you mentioned.
    You say education is the key. I agree that the industry needs to be tidied up and if it means educating or reeducating for some then so be it. The industry must have a means of upholding and maintaining a specific level of competence among its tradesmen. I say if you don't want to be a part of that then don't cry because you can't get a badge to wear saying you do. If you don't want to improve yourself then I say let the industry determine whether you should have the privilege of continuing as a professional tradesman.
    If you want to be a lawyer but don't pass the relevant requirements, I'd like to see what happens when you open up a solicitors firm in Queen st.
    Our fine trade should be no different. We are still taking thousands of hard earned cash from Joe and Flo. We are still responsible if our failure costs them 4x in damages to their dream home. Can't see the difference really.
    Education is the key In my opinion.
    As far as checking members level of competence. It shouldn't have to be that difficult and like anything you want, you won't get it if you sit on your hands and do nothing. I'm sure that some of you are smart enough to figure it out. But let every objection prove to be nothing more than an opportunity to improve not give up.
    AOS Tiling and Phil Hobson like this.
  3. Phil Hobson

    Phil Hobson Serious Contributor

    I could not agree more Bob, I have just had a long conversation this evening with Bob Howard from TTA UK and I still can't understand why anyone would not want to be a part of a governing body that promotes improving the skills required in our industry.

    We have plenty of semi/unskilled tilers. Time to stand up and be counted imho.
    Bob Neary and AOS Tiling like this.
  4. Bob Neary

    Bob Neary Tiling Forum Moderator Staff Member

    Was going to post a poll but I'd like to get more info from you guys.
    The question needs to be asked, would you join a NZ Tilers Association? If no please explain. The reason I ask why you wouldn't is so these issues can be dealt with in order to make membership more attractive and beneficial to you.
    This question is for the Kiwis but if you have anything to add to the mix please do so.
    To the Kiwis, please think seriously about this. If you don't feel upto posting a message then just a simple yes or no will be appreciated.
    This is not for my benefit but for yours. If there's enough support from you guys it can only benefit the industry and give you a voice when your local authorities demand of you certain requirements to carry out your trade. Registration with local government is already here and The building industry is going to get even more restrictive in terms of training and qualifications.

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