Raising the Bar for Drylining and Fixing
FIS, the representative body for the UK's finishes and interior sector, has published new guidance on certifying professional competencies in drylining and ceiling fixing.
Informed by its involvement with the Grenfell Industry Response Group, and proposals for a a new competency framework from the organisation's Skills Board, FIS' new Career and Competency Pathway documents map qualifications and training that are currently available against the critical stages of a career in drylining or ceiling fixing. They additionally include information to help individuals and organisations to understand which steps to take and whether an individual is ready to progress through a better defined “gateway” to the next stage of their career. The pathway is aligning trained and assessed outcomes that support progression within the occupation, through to supervisory and management roles.
Commenting on the launch of the pathway, FIS Skills Board Chair, Paul Leach of Stortford Interiors, said: "The aim of this work is to provide a better-defined pathway built around clear job roles and the stages within a career in key occupations within our sector. It will remain fluid and we can adapt it as new competency standards, qualifications and guidance emerges, but we felt it important to make a start to both support companies in managing competencies and help to present careers within the sector. The publishing of these pathways is a vital and clear rally call to the sector as we seek to improve competence within the workforce and address any skills shortages."
FIS Skills and Training Lead, George Swann added: "Many are already well on this journey and undoubtedly there will be subtle differences within individual companies. But, by providing this standard pathway we can help all contractors and employers to understand what good looks like, benchmark where they are at and hopefully support a better culture of training and development through the sector. We often talk about skills and competency and default to a conversation about card colour, but a genuine focus on competency is much more than this and involves ongoing learning as well as effective supervision and management and providing support and encouragement for individuals. Having an organisational training plan supports social value requirements which are now prominent in contracts."
The pathways are designed to be adapted by individual companies in-line with roles within organisations. FIS is additionally working to provide more detailed, standardised job descriptions to further support a consistent approach to career management within the industry, and developing pathways to cover all the core occupational areas associated with the Finishes and Interiors sector.