It will be interesting to see if the National Guild of Master Craftsmen have made any representations to Minister Hogan regarding the Construction Industry Federation’s (CIF) private register of contractors CIRI. The Guild is a well-established membership organisation (7,500 members) with it’s own register of competent tradespersons and contractors.
The recently established CIF register CIRI is currently the subject of a complaint by the representative body for self-builders (IAOSB) to the european ombudsman (see post here). The IAOSB have complained that the register is a restrictive practice endorsed by government. The CIF own and operate CIRI. It is also the subject of an individual complaint by self-builder Amanda Gallagher to the Competition Authority. See post here. Homebond of course has also launched a competing register of contractors but is not endorsed by Government (Link here).
CIRI is the only contractor register endorsed by government and has been written into law in the Building Control (Amendment) Regulation (SI.9 of 2014). We believe from a recent CPD in DunLaoghaire that CIRI has had 450 applications by persons/companies to join to date. Two meetings of small building contractors have recently been organised in Co. Wicklow and Co. Kildare to protest the CIF register.
Link to CIRI: CIRI: construction industry register ireland
Quote from CIRI website: “This is the register which you may have heard the Minister for Environment, Community and Local Government Phil Hogan TD and other members of the Government refer to in recent months. CIRI will operate on a voluntary basis initially but the Government has said they will look to put it on a statutory footing next year. CIRI is being set up to try to distinguish legitimate construction companies/ sole traders from those who have given the industry a bad name. At the moment anyone can pass themselves off as a builder or construction operative. There is nothing to stop anyone, regardless of their skills or qualifications from looking to secure construction work. CIRI will provide a mechanism to the public to distinguish between the credentials of registered construction practitioners from those not on the register. It will highlight those who follow best practice. CIRI should not be confused with any other registers you may hear about. CIRI is the only construction register that is being supported by the Government.”
The National Guild of Master Craftsmen have a well-established register of master craftsmen. This organisation has 7,500 members. One would wonder as to the viability of this Guild when the government’s preferred register is the one owned and operated by the CIF. It will be interesting to see if the Guild will lodge their own complaint against the CIF, CIRI, the Minister and Department. It would seem remarkable that the Department and Minister would give competitive advantage, written into law to a CIF register recently established, at the expense of another organisation that would appear to have a proven track-record and a well-established/ respected register of competent tradesmen and contractors.
We believe the Guild’s registration fee is less than half that of CIRI at €295 per annum (year one), reducing to €195 for each year after.
Here is a link to the National Guild of Master Craftsmen: National Guild of Master Craftsmen
Extract off the Guild’s website:
The National Guild of Master Craftsmen is the largest organisation representing skilled and accredited tradesmen and builders. Its aims are to protect the skills and integrity of its members and clearly define the skilled from the non-skilled thus enabling the general public to choose a National Guild of Master Craftsmen member to facilitate the service they require. The National Guild of Master Craftsmen has over 7500 members nationwide. With this membership the Guild has the ability to negotiate bulk buying power on group discounts.
1) To assist all members, particularly the self-employed and to protect them against the growing menace and the devaluing and damaging activities of the unskilled, against bureaucratic discrimination, against penal taxation and adverse legislation. Equally, to protect the public by instilling among members a greater sense of responsibility, making members aware of the national importance of the services they render, monitoring these standards to ensure that the Guild’s high standards are being maintained, and by encouraging members always to strive for excellence.
(2) To encourage an interchange of views among members, to endeavour to unite these views and bring them to the attention of the Government and local authorities in order to safeguard the livelihood and welfare of the members and their dependants.
(3) To BRING TOGETHER ALL SKILLED PEOPLE engaged in a craft, art, trade profession or vocation in order to safeguard the interests of craftsmen and the public.
(4) To publicise these high standards through the national and local media, thus creating public awareness of the ideals and aims of the Guild and its members.
(5) To ensure that the minimum qualifications for membership preserve the high standards of the Guild by excluding the unskilled.
(6) To promote to the public the trading assets of the members, their honour, professional expertise and integrity, their high standards and the value for money which they offer.
(7) To constitute a pressure group to seek the support of one or more Members of Dail Eireann to make sure that someone speaks up for the interests of the Guild members where it matters most.
(8) To provide clear identification and recognition for members so as to enable the public to distinguish them from the unskilled who pass themselves off as craftsmen and so increasingly to attract and direct work to members of the Guild.
(9) To foster learning among the apprentices and students in order to perpetuate the survival and success of their particular craft.
(10) To promote sponsorship of the Guild by persons, firms and organisations whether by financial support, by endorsement of the activities of the Guild or by patronage.
(11) To promote research within the craft, trade, art, profession or vocation in which members are engaged, for their own benefit and that of the public
Maintenance of Standards:
One of the Guild’s principle objectives is to preserve high standards. For it is the quality of members’ work which achieves public recognition, and the consequent reputation for quality which attracts extra business for all members. The symbol of the Guild’s reputation for quality is the Guild logo.
Unsuitable applicants, identified by the Guild’s strict vetting procedures, are automatically denied membership. Existing members, who allow their standards to fall, resulting in verified complaints from their customers, are refused permission to continue membership. In this way the Guild plays its part in maintaining the quality standards which protect those who are genuinely working with skill and integrity. Membership of the Guild can be the most important asset in many businesses.
It would cost a considerable amount of money for any company to build a comparable reputation for quality with such a strong corporate identification. In the eyes of prospective customers, any new member is automatically identified with long-standing members who have already shown their determination to provide quality products and services. This gives reassurance to prospective customers deciding where to place their next order. It also places an obligation on the new member to live up to high standards. You will be helping yourself by helping us to maintain these high standards at all times
Services and Benefits:
- Insurance Services– Members are entitled to avail of the Tradesmen Insurance Group’s services, our inhouse insurance brokerage group dedicated to all members of the national guild.
- Private Health Care– Discounts on Private Health Care plans for members of the National Guild of Master Craftsmen, with V.H.I.
- Legal Advice Service– Free Legal advice available from the Guild’s list of appointed professionals.
- Mediation Service- The Guilds Mediation Services available to members can help to avoid costly legal proceedings.
- Debt Collection & Credit Vetting– In response to the demand from our members we have established Guild Money Recovery Services, our own in house debt recovery company, independently staffed with solicitors, door step callers and telephone personnel.
- Printing– Substantial Discounts are available to members from the appointed list of Guild’s printers.
- Safety Statements– A complete range of Professional Health & Safety Risk Management Services- Nationwide.
- Vehicle Fleet Discounts– Available to Guild Members on the purchase of Ford, Opel, Ssang Yong, Volkswagon and Toyota vehicles – conditions apply.
- Public Recognition– Membership of the National Guild of Master Craftsmen is recognition of Quality & Service and the Certificate is a valuable trading asset.
- Letter of Recommendation Service– The Guild provides a highly valuable service for its members by way of a letter of recommendation service to enable further business opportunities.
- The Guild Logo– The Guild Logo identifies to the public the quality and skills of the member.
- Register of Members– Computerised list of members to enable us to identify for the public and other members the quality of skills and services offered.
joining: For information on applying to the National Guild of Master Craftsmen, contact Kathleen Carroll, Lo-Call,1890 20 70 50 or email firstname.lastname@example.org with your contact details.