‘CAB Backs ‘Specification’ Winner at Cheltenham’

Date: 4 November 2013
Source: Council for Aluminium in Building
The last quarter of 2013 kicked off in style for CAB with a well attended Members’ Regional Breakfast meeting held at the prestigious Cheltenham Racecourse that considered the ‘Future of Specification’ and was followed by a social media workshop.

The event afforded members the opportunity to hear some of the latest research into the topic and also to learn about a key International study on ‘Aluminium and Durability’.To facilitate wider engagement, Su Butcher of Just Practising provided a ‘live blog’ of the event which created considerable engagement across a number of continents.

After regular marketing and technical updates from CAB’s Chief Executive and Technical Director, the first speaker Chris Ashworth of Competitive Advantage presented some detailed research undertaken into the future of specification. Chris highlighted the crucial role that BIM would play in the future of UK Construction as routes to specification were rapidly changing. By 2016 it was forecast that the value of work BIM is used for would be 14 times greater than today. He emphasised just how important it was for manufacturers to have their data easily available for use by specifiers in a clear and concise manner and predicted that in the future the marketplace would see continued earlier manufacturer involvement, greater levels of (free) input from the supply chain, greater recognition of value and finally less specification switching.

Professor Michael Stacey of Michael Stacey Architects, offered an overview of our forgotten ‘aluminium’ installations which has now been pulled into a larger research project headed up by the International Aluminium Institute (IAI) aptly named ‘Towards Sustainable Cities’. The first part of the project aims to visit and undertake non-invasive research into various completed projects where aluminium has been used extensively as the cladding and frame glazing material for the envelope. The results of this study into aluminium and durability should give the wider industry a good insight into aluminium and to improvement in design to achieve better sustainability whilst allowing current structures to be evaluated for possible remedial work to lengthen their life expectancy.

There was excellent engagement with the live blog which can be seen at http://storify.com/subutcher/cabaluspec and the twitter reach was over 134,000 accounts. This was an apt example of the opportunities afforded by social media that was the theme of an afternoon workshop presented by Su Butcher, which also looked in detail at strategies to use across LinkedIn and Twitter. Su identified how social media, when used correctly could generate enquiries from specifiers and the importance of peer recommendations.

CAB offers a high level of expert technical support, marketing promotion and market insights which helps its membership add value to their businesses. If you would like to learn more about membership in 2014 please contact us on 01453 828851 or email julie.harley@c-a-b.org.uk

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