Contacting CIAT

Following UK Government guidelines, Central Office is closed and all staff are working remotely.

If you have an enquiry, please email the most relevant staff member in the first instance (click here for details and click the arrows to show email addresses). If you do not know who to contact you can still email info@ciat.org.uk or call us on + 44 (0)20 7278 2206.

We currently have no access to incoming post and apologise if you have not received a reply or acknowledgement. If your matter requires urgent attention, please email info@ciat.org.uk or call +44 (0)20 7278 2206


Meetings at/with the Institute

These will be moved to a video/conference call or rescheduled to a later date.


Qualifying as a Chartered Architectural Technologist MCIAT remotely

If you are an AT professional and looking to utilise your time during lockdown, then you can qualify as a Chartered Architectural Technologist and the process will be carried out remotely. Your Professional Assessment Interview will be held via Zoom and the current turnaround is quicker than usual.

Steps to qualify remotely:

  1. Complete the MCIAT Professional Assessment and reference supporting evidence to prove suitability. It must be supported by a Referee (MCIAT, ARB, MRICS, MCIOB, MCABE etc.). You must be an active Associate member or profile candidate to apply.

  2. Submit the MCIAT PA application with evidence via Dropbox, WeTransfer, Google Drive (or alike) to membership@ciat.org.uk and pay the £350 assessment fee.

  3. The Member Panel will review the MCIAT PA application and determine a result (pass/defer/refer). If we defer and ask for further evidence, we will provide guidance on what is required.

  4. Once awarded a pass, we will arrange your Professional Assessment Interview via Zoom.

A selection of completed exemplers, PA form to complete, Professional Standards Framework and candidate guidance notes can be found here.

For any queries or assistance required, please do not hesitate to contact the Membership Department:
James Banks, Membership Director – james@ciat.org.uk
Dorota Fitzpatrick, Assistant Membership Director – dorota@ciat.org.uk
Megan Brown, Membership Administrator – megan@ciat.org.uk


Web conferencing software

Members may benefit from using web conferencing software. Click here to learn about different options available.


Checklist for Architectural Technologists

CIAT encourages its members to consider the ramifications of the current and evolving situation as daily life is disrupted for themselves and their businesses. Remember to keep up to date with official advice and guidance. Key considerations include:

For Practice Leaders

Protect your staff

  • Enable your staff to work from home if they are able to do so. ACAS (the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) have guidance on supporting employees who are working remotely due to the pandemic.
  • Develop your policies and plans for supporting flexible working arrangements, particularly in light of school closures and childcare disruption.
  • If your workplace is open, to make it safe, employers must encourage staff to work from home, wherever possible; have completed a 'risk assessment', and taken reasonable steps to prevent harm in the workplace; and follow the government guidelines on safer working on GOV.UK.
  • Put in place mental wellbeing support for remote working staff.
  • Ensure that your core staff support systems, including those for payroll and staff sickness reporting are robust and resilient.
  • Look into furlough options if appropriate. The CIPD have provided a useful guide on this. Click here to access it.

Review your insurances and contracts

  • If your PI insurance policy is due for renewal within the next three months make early contact with your broker.
  • Review all your insurance policies, including any business interruption insurance provisions.
  • Review all professional services and construction contracts for force majeure provisions.

Make contact with your local regulators

  • Contact your local planning authority and building control authority/approved inspectors to understand their plans for development control and building control processes during this period.

For salaried Architectural Technologists and staff

Employment rights
The UK Government has been clear that employers should support their staff’s welfare, especially during an extended response. It is important employees understand their employment rights, not just at times like these. 

ACAS (the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) has published advice for employers and employees. Click here to view it.

There is also new guidance on homeworking. See more here.

The Money Advice Service has a guide that looks at your sick pay rights, changes to claiming your benefits and what it means for travel. Click here to read it.

Personal finance
Review your personal finances and keep up to date with any announcements that may help your circumstances. New measures are being brought in to support individuals durings these challenging times.

Advice on sick pay, mortgages, rent and a warning about Coronavirus scams has been issued by MoneySavingExpert. Click here to view this. (Please note CIAT is not responsible for this external content.)

Homeworking
Everyone is urged to work from home during this disruption, if it is possible to do so. When working from home, ensure you have clear understanding about expectations on you for delivery, and maintain regular contact with your line manager.

For students

Your university
Make sure you have read all guidance that will have been provided by your university. Contact your tutors to understand how they intend to keep in touch with you, and maintain continuity of teaching over the coming weeks and months.

Managing your time 
In normal circumstances, the end of the academic year can be a stressful time but it is important to continue to produce your best work. Make sure you are clear when any assignments have to be submitted – make a detailed plan of what you have to do and for when.

Try to maintain your usual pattern of working, and follow best practice with respect to time management – create a timetable and and set yourself regular and reasonable goals with your work.

Keeping in touch
If you are currently in a different country/time zone, consider how this may affect your tutorials and teaching interactions – make sure everyone is aware of your current location and any impacts this may have. 

Keep in touch with family and friends, and maintain the conversations you have with your university peer group. Look for creative ways to share support, knowledge and information.

Your health and wellbeing
If you are feeling anxious or have concerns, there is lots of advice available. Remember to speak to your family, friends and tutors. The Architects' Benevolent Society (ABS) have many resources available in response to this unprecedented situation. Click here to read their statement on COVID-19 and access their resources.

 

Updates from The Construction Leadership Council (CLC)

Construction Roadmap to Recovery (1 June 2020)
The Construction Leadership Council's Covid-19 Taskforce has laid out proposals to secure the future of construction businesses nationwide, while setting the industry on a sustainable path towards recovery. The Roadmap to Recovery can be downloaded here.
 

Contractual best practice guidance (7 May 2020)
Advice on contractual best practice has been produced by the CLC via its Covid-19 Industry Task Force. View it here.
 

The Construction Leadership Council (CLC) has written to the Prime Minister (1 April 2020). In summary, the letter asks the Government to enact the following measures:

  1. In addition to the Job Retention Scheme, suspending PAYE and CIS tax due to HMRC in April and May for construction and consultancy firms and workers, with no financial penalty. This will relieve some immediate cashflow challenges, and give companies time to secure the support of measures that the Government has established;

  2. Deferring/cancelling Apprenticeship/Levy payments due for the duration of the crisis. Whilst firms in the sector are committed to retaining apprentices, and in the longer term increasing the number of these, whilst the current restrictions are in place it is not possible for firms to train apprentices. This would further reduce cash flow pressure, but without affecting the longer-term provision of funding for apprenticeships;

  3. Welcoming the guidance on flexibities in public procurement rules provided by Policy Procurement Notice 02/20: Supplier relief due to COVID-19, but urging Ministers to continue to encourage all public sector clients, regulated utilities and firms in the private sector working on public infrastructure to expedite cashflow through the supply chain, by making use of these;

  4. Support for the Directors of micro-businesses. There are many directors of small building firms and consultancies who pay themselves a small salary, and top this up through dividend payments. These currently fall between the support provided by the Job Retention Scheme and through the assistance for the self-employed. This is a problem for other sectors too, and it would be welcome if the Government could ensure these Directors would be able to access support from one of these schemes;

  5. Retention release – it is estimated that throughout the industry there is £4.5bn held by clients and firms in the supply chain in the form of cash retentions, which is a routine withholding of between 1% to 5% of each regular payment to be released upon successful completion of the works without defects. There will, no doubt, be some strong opinions over this, but were the Government to direct all Government bodies to release all retention monies held this would inject cash at all levels of the construction supply chain,

  6. Extend the £25k SME business continuity grants scheme to the construction sector.


CLC guidance note: Employment Schemes (31 March 2020)
This gudiance note gives up-to-date employment advice and includes a comprehensive FAQs list on construction specific queries. Please click here to view this.


Construction Leadership Council (CLC) statement (23 March 2020)
We are in exceptional circumstances, and are doing our utmost to keep construction sites operational wherever it is practical and safe to do so. Whilst the guidance from Public Health England may change in the future, for the time being construction sites of any size that are operating during the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic need to ensure they are protecting their workforce and minimising the risk of spread of infection.

To implement the Government's social distancing recommendation the Construction Leadership Council has now published Site Operating Procedures. I would strongly recommend that these procedures are implemented by every operational construction site, with the aim of us having a standard approach across the industry that all firms and workers can adopt.

It is also vital that the health and safety requirements of any construction activity must not be compromised at this time. If an activity cannot be undertaken safely due to a lack of suitably qualified personnel being available, or social distancing being implemented, it should not take place. We are aware that emergency services are also under great pressure and may not be in a position to respond as quickly as usual. 

Update: Site Operating Procedures v4 has now been published and replaces Site Operating Procedures v3 which has now been withdrawn. Click here to download the latest document.

Andy Mitchell
Co-Chair, Construction Leadership Council

 

Site operating procedures during COVID-19

COVID-19 Site safety checklists and forms from CITB (14 May 2020)
The below resources will ensure that those who are permitted and able to return to work have a clear understanding of how they can apply the CLC's COVID-19 Site Operating Procedures guidance (Version 3) in practice. Guidance on issues such as close working, cleaning and what employees should do if they become unwell is included.

[Please note: these have been designed to apply to the v3 site operating procedures that have since been superseded and withdrawn]

CCO1: COVID-19 – Site Operating Procedures compliance checklist
An interactive checklist, designed to be used to ensure compliance with current guidance on protecting your workforce on site during the COVID-19 pandemic. The checklist can be amended with additional comments to ensure it aligns with specific site policies. The checklist will help organisations to establish whether crucial health and safety principles are embedded in their day-to-day operations during the pandemic.

CC02: COVID-19 – Health, safety and environmental risk assessment template
A guide offering example control measures for those required to undertake risk assessment of the workplace and specific activities on site. An interactive risk assessment template is also included to facilitate this process.

CC03: COVID-19 – A toolbox talk for construction workers
Designed to be delivered to construction workers by their manager or supervisor. Good communication is essential for health and safety management on construction sites. It is vitally important that contractors, managers and supervisors engage and consult with workers, as it is an effective way of identifying hazards and controlling risks.

CC04: COVID-19 –Weekly Site Operating Procedures checklist
An interactive checklist, designed to ensure on-going compliance with both established and additional procedures. 

Updated Site Operating Procedures 
The Government has confirmed that construction sites should continue to operate during the current Coronavirus pandemic. Alok Sharma MP, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, confirmed that the Site Operating Procedures published by the CLC are aligned with Public Health England (PHE) guidance that must be implemented in the workplace.

Update: Site Operating Procedures v5 has now been published and replaces Site Operating Procedures v3. The new document reflects the latest Government guidance following the easing of lockdown measures in England from Saturday 4 July 2020. 

Update from Graham Watts, Chief Executive of CIC on construction sites (30 March 2020)
The formal government position with regard to construction sites being open is that construction work should continue. This was reiterated over the weekend of 28/29 March 2020 by Alok Sharma MP, the BEIS Secretary of State. Read the Secretary of State's open letter to the construction industry here.

This remains the formal line of the Construction Leadership Council (CLC) with the codicil that sites operate in accordance with Public Health England instructions; without compromising health and safety; and in accordance with the Site Operating Procedures issued last week (23 March 2020) by the CLC. These are currently in the process of being revised to include more information on PPE but these are the current procedures in operation.

The CLC has prepared this template that firms can adopt and adapt to issue to their workforces regarding travel to work. 

If sites are to be temporarily closed, the CLC has published guidance on how sites should be closed. Read it here.
 

Guidance for on-site construction sites

Langley, supported by the Construction Industry Council (CIC), has produced a short video that demonstrates safe and responsible guidance for workers on construction sites operating during the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, to ensure the protection of the workforce and minimise the risk of the spread of infection.
 

Safe working during the COVID-19 pandemic – general guidelines for organisations

A guidance document from BSI with practical examples for different types of organisations to help determine the actions the organisation can take to make the workplace safer.


Restarting building work

The Federation of Master Builders has issued guidance for its members on restarting building work. To view the guide visit fmb.org.uk.


The Construction Industry Coronavirus (CICV) Forum

The CICV Forum was set up with the aim of bringing together the main construction trade and professional bodies to gather intelligence, share advice and speak directly with the Scottish Government on issues affecting members in the current crisis.

An article about the work of the Forum appears in the June/July 2020 edition of CABLEtalk, the SELECT stakeholder magazine. View it here.

The CICV Forum has developed detailed guidance on health and safety and this can be viewed here


Contractual issues caused by Coronavirus

The Cabinet Office has issued guidance on responsible contract behaviour. Access this here.

CIAT has produced an article on assessing risks on site and the impact on contracts which can be viewed here

Contractual impacts of Covid-19 flowchart from CIAT.

New guidance on contractual issues caused by coronavirus has been published by Build UK and law firm Wedlake Bell, setting out key general considerations as well as implications for JCT and NEC contracts. Read it here.


Planning application issues (updated 30 April 2020)

Following enquiries by some members experiencing difficulty in progressing planning applications, CIAT has been in contact with Planning Portal, and they have offered the following information.  We hope that this will assist: 

The majority of Local Planning Authorities (LPAs) have been able to work remotely, but there have been issues with someaccessing the Council IT network, which has taken time to implement.  There are also issues with accessing and processing paper-based correspondence and applications along with any cheque payments that have been received, as Council employees will be working remotely.

In light of this, Planning Portal has recommended that all applications, payments and correspondence are sent electronically.  Several LPAs have also lost planning staff due to their redeployment to priority front-line services to help their communities tackle COVID-19.  Planning Portal has advised that this number varies from LPA to LPA.  The Planning Advisory Services has issued a set of FAQs to LPAs about working during these times, and the link to access these FAQs is here

Despite this, LPAs are endeavouring to ensure that their services are available and decisions are made as quickly as possible.  With regards to the downturn in application submissions, another update has been published which can be found here. (Please note that this was last updated on 7 April 2020.)


Planning Market Insight Report from the Planning Portal

Planning Portal have released a report about the impact of COVID-19 on planning applications. Read May's Insight Report here.

Read the June Insight Report here.


Information and guidance from Health and Safety Executive (HSE)

Review Coronavirus information provided by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) - click here to view it.

Regulating occupational health and safety during the coronavirus outbreak.
Guidance for employers to keep lone workers healthy and safe.
Advice for duty holders on additional precautions to help reduce the risk of transmission of coronavirus when meeting legal requirements for thorough examination and testing (TE&T).
Downloadable stress talking toolkit which has ideas you can adapt to suit your current working arrangements.
Protecting homeworkers
HSE stakeholder bulletin 30 April
HSE stakeholder bulletin 15 May
HSE stakeholder bulletin 28 May
HSE stakeholder bulletin 12 June
HSE stakeholder bulletin 19 June
HSE stakeholder bulletin 26 June


Furlough scheme risks for directors and professionals

An article from insurance risk and commercial law firm BLM on risks for directors and professionals in relation to payments received from HMRC under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.


Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme FAQs

The ACE has produced some FAQs about the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Read them here.


Guide to furlough from CIPD

This guide from CIPD outlines the key facts (that have been announced so far) about designating employees as furloughed workers and gives advice on implementing this new type of leave. Read the guide here.


FAQs from NHBC

The National House Building Council (NHBC) has published a list of frequently asked questions and answers for builders and developers, housing associations, homeowners, conveyancers and suppliers. Click here to read them


Hays Thrive free online training

Hays Thrive is a free online training portal designed to help employers and their teams grow the skills they need to function effectively and evolve in the face of the Coronavirus crisis. Current courses focus on remote working, wellbeing and health and safety. New courses are added monthly. Find out more and sign up here.


Mental health guidance and resources

NHS – Mental wellbeing while staying at home
Mind – Coronavirus and your wellbeing
Mental Health Foundation – Looking after your mental health during the coronavirus outbreak
Acas – Supporting mental health in the workplace
Blogs from AcasManagers have feelings too: managing mental health during the coronavirus pandemic; Coronavirus: coping with the new normal
Architects Mental Wellbeing Forum (AMWF) have provided a useful collection of resources and tips on how to stay positive, resilient, and in touch with others during the current crisis with this toolkit


Accommodation for workers working away from home

To help anyone in construction working away from home find local accommodation, Build UK has temporarily repurposed its Open Doors website. The CLC has teamed up with trade body UK Hospitality, which has confirmed that during the lockdown its members are able to provide accommodation for workers unable to return home. Anyone looking for a bed for the night can now use the Open Doors website to find accommodation providers who have space for construction workers.


PPE support for the NHS

The Construction Leadership Council (CLC) is in touch with NHS London Hospitals Trust regarding the assistance of the construction industry to help the NHS with urgently needed PPE.

The Trust has provided a spreadsheet to ask what might be available across the spectrum of equipment provided. A summary of the equipment is as follows:

  • FFP3 respirator masks
  • Protective full-face visors (disposable or reusable, these must be transparent and without any holes or eye slits)
  • Full-face visors (reusable)
  • Safety goggles/glasses (that must cover the eyes)
  • Hand sanitiser or gel (at least 60% plus)
  • Full body (hazardous material) suits.

They are also asking for logistic/transport support.

If you, or your employer, are able to provide some of these essential pieces of equipment, please respond in the first instance to Graham Watts, Chief Executive of the CIC – gwatts@cic.org.uk. This is an important initiative and we encourage anyone who is able to help to do so.


If you require any further information or advice please do not hesitate to contact us at info@ciat.org.uk - we will continue to do all we can to support our Members in this period.