Success despite challenges

The Door and Hardware Federation (DHF) has hailed 2020 one of its most productive years, despite also being one of its most challenging.

The organisation took a business-as-usual approach and engaged with members throughout the year, despite increasing levels of uncertainty in the construction industry, and economy as a whole.

At the beginning of the first lockdown in March, DHF released guidance to door and gate companies, and operatives working on construction sites, outlining the key considerations regarding safety and social distancing on site. And by April, DHF had already launched online courses to serve its members wherever they are located.

Regarding training, DHF said it was essential to adapt to changing circumstances and the one-day, Level 2 Award courses in Automated Gate and Traffic Barrier Safety and Industrial and Garage Door Safety were filmed and edited to enable DHF to share knowledge with its learners.

By June 1, face-to-face learning had been re-instated at DHF’s Tamworth-based training academy, albeit, adhering to social distancing, with the organisation also announcing a series of new training initiatives. A distance learning programme was offered in the weeks that followed, delivered via Zoom by training and compliance officer Nick Perkins, and with examinations taken via the online facility.

In September, DHF held a two-hour Zoom-delivered seminar for members’ customers on the importance of safety – and legal responsibilities – for owners of automated products. This was followed by a further seminar on managing the maintenance of industrial doors. And a four-part series of webinars and accompanying briefing papers were produced for its membership in relation to UKCA marking and what they need to consider from January 1, 2021.

Head of commercial operations Patricia Sowsbery-Stevens said: “It is during times of tremendous challenge that we know what we are really capable of and DHF’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic has been first-class. We have been determined that our members flourish throughout 2020 and have kept them aware of the on-going restrictions, issues and challenges facing the wider industry.”