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Latest Guest Column Update

Don’t panic, do get technical
20 June, 2018
The General Data Protection Regulation and a backlash against business social media use should not trigger a wholesale rethink on marketing strategy, but the Grenfell disaster should prompt a focus on precision of product performance claims, writes Liz Male of Liz Male Consulting.
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Construction class action
Wednesday, June 20, 2018 The Design Engineer Construct! programme enables construction and associated businesses to really engage in attracting badly needed new young talent to their industry, says Alison Watson MBE of Class of Your Own
Is face-to-face customer service dead?
Tuesday, May 22, 2018 There’s a price to pay for ditching long-standing core retail values in favour of faceless online trading and it could lead to a loss of expertise on the shop floor, argues Rupert Scott, membership manager, TRADA
Why we mustn’t ignore red oak
Tuesday, May 22, 2018 It’s the most prolific US hardwood and consumers like it, so isn’t it time European buyers gave red oak another look, asks American Hardwood Export Council European director David Venables
Timber trades count down to the GDPR
Wednesday, April 18, 2018 The General Data Protection Regulation has major implications for business, says Matthew Mahony, British Woodworking Federation policy and communications executive
The wood awards – where skill intersects sustainability
Wednesday, April 18, 2018 The Wood Awards not only celebrates latest advances and new design directions in the use of timber in construction and manufacture, it’s also an valuable interface between the design and specifier sectors and the timber trade, writes David Miles, chief executive officer of Gold Sponsor Mears plc
Government backing British
Wednesday, March 21, 2018 With increasing support in the highest places, Grown in Britain’s momentum can only grow, says chief executive Dougal Driver
Bold Brexit pledge benefits trade
Wednesday, March 21, 2018 James Latham Group environmental manager Ewa Bazydlo welcomes the government’s pledge to stay at the EU table on timber legality regulation and assurance post Brexit
Communicating FLEGT is key
Monday, February 26, 2018 Indonesian FLEGT-licensed timber has been available for over a year, but still more has to be done to communicate what lies behind the licence, writes TTF head of sustainability Mike Worrell.
Wood - but not as we know it
Monday, February 26, 2018 Species, specification and application – all need to be rethought to ensure timber fulfill its promise as the material of the future, writes Dan Ridley-Ellis, head of the Centre for Wood Science and Technology
Panels sector clears one Brexit hurdle
Wednesday, January 31, 2018 Ingenuity, compromise and industry pressure have dealt with the risk of British companies, including wood panel producers, losing 2018 EU Emissions Trading Scheme allowances as a consequence of Brexit. Combined with promising trade trends, this could make for a happy new year for the sector, says Wood Panel Industries Federation director-general Alastair Kerr
Building trust bolsters the brand
Wednesday, January 31, 2018 A key focus of Keith Fryer’s just-ended term as Timber Trade Federation president has been increasing market faith in timber in terms of legality, sustainability and performance. In its Trusted Timber campaign, he writes, TTF members now have a great opportunity to further enhance popular perceptions of wood
Collaboration and Creativity are keys to training
Friday, December 29, 2017 To recruit and retain new personnel, the timber industry must move training from the tried and tested, and refocus on ways to fully realise the potential of its employees. Donaldson Timber Engineering business development director and 2017 TTJ Career Development Award winner Luke Roberts writes
The Timber Trade needs diversity
Friday, December 29, 2017 Charles Taylor, a timber merchant with 20 years’ experience and sales director of wood plastic specialist Composite Prime, discusses the rise of composite materials and why the timber trade should embrace change to remain relevant in the market
The International Softwood Conference: A View from the Outside
Friday, October 20, 2017 This year’s International Softwood Conference, held in Hamburg in early October, highlighted growing softwood output, but also rising demand in key markets worldwide, reports Charles Hopping, chairman of Hoppings Softwood Products and ISC speaker
Positivity not passivity for tropical timber
Friday, October 20, 2017 The STTC Conference underlined an energy and breadth of ideas for promoting sustainable tropical timber and forest management, writes Mark van Benthem of independent sustainable forest products and services institute Probos
Scholars and Skills Builders
Wednesday, September 20, 2017 Never before has training, knowledge and skills building been more critical for the future of the timber industry, says Glennon Brothers joint managing director Mike Glennon
Geared up and ready to go
Wednesday, September 20, 2017 Structural Timber Association chief executive Andrew Carpenter says the combination of market conditions, political will and housing need mean the potential for timber-based construction in the UK has rarely been better
Finding answers to Certification Challenges
Tuesday, June 20, 2017 To continue to increase the volume of verified sustainable timber on the market, the industry cannot settle for the certification status quo, says James Latham plc chairman Peter Latham
The transformative power of technology
Tuesday, June 20, 2017 Investing in the latest IT is no longer a business option, it’s a must. But the benefits can be significant, writes Anagram Systems marketing manager Nick Hardy.

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