Minutes of the FIA Council Meeting
held on Tuesday 10th May 2005
at The Saracens Head Hotel, Towcester at 10.00 a.m.
Mike Phillips – ChairmanMike Gilmore – TreasurerPeter LythgoeJohn ColtonLee FunnellDr. Nick Channon 1. Apologies
Minutes of the previous meeting held on 9th March 2005
The minutes of the previous meeting held on 9th March 2005 were taken as read and agreed and weresigned by the Chairman.
FIA Qualification (JC & LF)
Mr. Gilmore has started work on the documentation, web site etc. for the launch of the scheme.
However, he has some queries relating to inconsistencies in the awards themselves (levels and namesof the actual qualifications differ in the variety of presentations made) and awaits input from Messrs.
Colton and Funnell. These issues have now been addressed and Mr. Gilmore has been emailed thecorrect information.
It was agreed that the level names were as follows: Level II ‘Technician’, Level III ‘Specialist’, Level IV‘Engineer’ and Level V ‘Expert’.
Once the web site information is confirmed the hyperlinks will be created using the text alreadyprepared by Messrs. Colton and Funnell. Simple information sheets detailing the scheme (‘Learners’,Training Providers’ and ‘Trainers’) will now be written. Basic scheme information should be includedtogether with ‘why’ and ‘how’ information.
Then, as per the agreement at the previous meeting, a mailing to members providing training servicescan be completed (Friday 13th May). Those FIA members with the Training Approval will be allowed toregister as ‘Training Providers’ of the scheme, without fee, but registration forms must be completed.
All other FIA members who list ‘Training’ as either their principal or secondary activity will also beinvited to apply to the scheme.
The ‘Training Providers’, once registered, can then register their ‘Trainers’ who once the relevant feehas been paid can be recorded as ‘Certified Trainers’.
Mr. Colton to write the text for the covering letter. Attached to this will be the relevant forms detailedabove.
FIA Council meeting minutes – 10th May 2005 At a later stage Mr. Colton will also provide details of companies who provide Training but are notcurrently FIA members. These can then also be sent details of the scheme.
As previously agreed, those people currently listed on the SkillsMatch database will be sent a letteradvising them of the new scheme and providing them with the opportunity to register as a ‘Learner’ freeof charge as long as they have the relevant Health & Safety skills. Mr. Funnell to advise Mr. Gilmore ofthe exact details of acceptable H&S qualifications.
A special ‘FIA Qualification Newsletter’ will be written from the text on the web site detailing the schemeand explaining it to members.
Mr. Funnell said that NCN had asked for an article from the FIA on why any company should join atrade association and he felt that this article could be a vehicle to include details of the FIA qualification.
Mr. Gilmore stated that NCN only required 250 words and perhaps this was not a suitable place for adetailed announcement of the scheme. It was agreed that Messrs. Phillips and Funnell would worktogether on text for this article focussing on the good technical information/documents available for FIAmembers and detailing the qualification scheme. It was noted that trade associations only succeed ifthey provide benefits that members want.
A press release/launch for the scheme was discussed and it was agreed that Mr. Phillips, in theabsence of Mr. Thompsett, should ask Nigel May for his advice on promoting the scheme. His input onthe mechanics that he thinks may work, the chances, costs and likely success rate of promotion.
It was noted that the Training & Qualification guide on the web site would not be altered at this stage.
Mr. Colton will take overall responsibility for the scheme and will answer any questions from membersor non-members that arise from the mailing and web site information.
Reports & Actions Arising
a) Mike Phillips
UKCPO is not currently very active. Support has been forthcoming for the FIA qualification scheme.
Mr. Phillips will advise the group that the scheme is about to be launched and will ask for theirexpressions of support.
b) Secretariat report – see attached.
Membership numbers: Currently 198. Mr. Gilmore said that although there had been a number of
resignations he saw the problem was a result of a slow down in new members being accepted.
Mr. Phillips said that the FIA must make the most out of the launch of the FIA qualification scheme, asthis should attract some new members. It was noted that the main reason for most members joiningwas either access to the technical documents or the FIA badge on their letterheads etc. Afterdiscussion it was agreed that at the next meeting the matter of attracting new members will be FIA Council meeting minutes – 10th May 2005 addressed. A brain-storming session will be added to the agenda and all Council were asked to thinkabout this matter ready for discussion at the next meeting.
The Secretary asked if the low take up could be due to the lack of FIA press releases issued in recentmonths.
Mr. Gilmore will contact QMs and TDs of the system suppliers and ask they are willing to push FIAmembership to their approved installers.
FIA Newsletter: Content for issue 79 will be finalised in June/July.
FIA AIS: It was noted that three member companies have recently enquired about the AIS. The
finalisation of the updated scheme should now be a priority.
c) Mike Gilmore – see report attached
Web site: Due to problems with Mr. Gilmore’s site he has had time constraints in finalising the last
actions regarding the new FIA web site. These will now be addressed in the next couple of weeks.
Financial: The accounts for March show a profit of £5,213 with liquidity of £21,336. Despite the fall in
membership Mr. Gilmore expects a small profit at year-end although expenditure must be carefully
Technical report: Mr. Gilmore will report back to Council regarding his meeting with Mr. Gorman of
RAF Henlow later that day.
The FIA Polarity Maintenance document will be included in the European installation standardEN50174-1.
PSP: Mr. Gilmore explained that the project was progressing. Although not yet ready to be sold to FIA
members as a proven product Mr. Gilmore said that the FIA had chosen a good project which was now
being supported by international standardisation.
Standards Activity: The list of Standards meetings was noted.
d) Peter Thompsett – Commercial Director – PR
It was noted that at the previous meeting FIA Council members had been asked to define exactly whatthey want to achieve with PR and identify the target of PR. Council had been asked to write down themagazines, paper format or electronic, that they think the FIA should target and how many can beinfluenced by direct contact. These should have been sent direct to Mr. Thompsett.
Mr. Phillips has spoken briefly to Mr. Thompsett and it appears that he has not received any input todate.
e) Peter Lythgoe – Installation
Mr. Lythgoe said that he had made no progress on the proposal since the December meeting when hewas disappointed that only a very small time slot had been allowed for discussion on the matter.
FIA Council meeting minutes – 10th May 2005 He now required assistance to progress the proposal and asked for a decent time slot on the nextmeeting agenda for this purpose. This was agreed.
Discussion relating to the templates available via the TCP product followed. Mr. Gilmore said that theFIA could either include FIA templates in the TCP software or the FIA could take the TCP templatesand use them for the scheme. He added that his intention was not to offer any software that competedwith any FIA scheme but to provide detailed templates in accordance with BS 6701.
The possibility of enhancing the scheme by bundling the basic TCP software with it was discussed butno decision was reached.
Mr. Lythgoe said that he required assistance in selling the approval, budgeting and raising the schemevisibility to specifiers and consultants. He wondered if a part-time person should be employed toadvance the scheme.
It was agreed that the AIS needs to be attractive and give members a differential. It requires FIApolicing to make it a success.
Mr. Phillips said that a business plan needs to be defined to include how the scheme is devised, thepossible revenue that may be achieved and then there may be the possibility to hire someonespecifically to go out and sell the product.
Mr. Lythgoe agreed to list the remaining tasks for the entire scheme and email to Council asking forcomments. He will arrange a meeting with Mr. Gilmore between now and the July meeting to discussthe matter further.
f) Paul Bateson – non attendee / Nick Channon – Test & Measurement
Dr. Channon informed the meeting that although his intention after the March meeting was to meet upand discuss the portfolio further with Mr. Bateson, this has not been achieved.
He further informed the meeting that he will no longer work for Megger after 13th May and therefore willcease to qualify for a position on Council. His resignation was accepted. The Secretary will arrangeresignation of Director forms with Companies House.
He felt it was unlikely that his new employers would be interested in membership of FIA, as they did notdo much work in the fibre area. He added that he had hoped to be able to contribute to Council workbut it was unfortunate that his employment with Megger had ceased.
g) Sydney Hogg – Passive Components
Any Other Business
a) Lucid – on-line assessment with C&G: Mr. Colton advised the meeting that he was experiencing
some problems with C&G relating to his companies assessment.
b) NCN – possible article ‘copper cheaper than fibre’ – not the case: Mr. Funnell suggested that
an article should be submitted to NCN on this subject. Mr. Gilmore said that Tyco had prepared a
presentation on this very subject. Mr. Funnell felt strongly that an FIA article should be written on this
although he had not been given approval from his company to do so. Mr. Gilmore suggested a white
paper on the subject for the FIA web site.
FIA Council meeting minutes – 10th May 2005 After discussion it was agreed that Mr. Gilmore would meet with Mr. Funnell on 23rd May to discuss thismatter further and set out logical arguments to back up any article. Mr. Phillips will discuss the matterwith Mr. May also to obtain an estimate of costs to sustain articles and feedback.
c) Mr. Phillips stated that it his intention to stand down from Council at the AGM in December.
Confirmation of next meeting dates
The next meeting will be Tuesday 12th July.
Thereafter Tuesday 11th October and Thursday 8th December - + AGM FIAMINS10050510th May 2005emailed to MG 10/05/05approved MG – 10/05/05emailed MP – 11/05/05approved MP – 16/05/05distributed – 16/05/05 FIA Council meeting minutes – 10th May 2005


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