Australian Plumbing June 2016

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your industry magazine

the Business issue


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Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine 15/306 Albert Street Brunswick VIC 3056 T (03) 9329 9622 F (03) 9329 5060 E The Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine (Industry and Member editions and occasional supplements including the MPMSAA Group Training News, are official journals produced by the Master Plumbers’ and Mechanical Services Association of Australia (MPMSAA) ABN: 56 296 473 997 Print Post number: 100019076 ISSN: 1325-6289

Master Plumbers Association Locations Head Office 15/306 Albert Street Brunswick VIC 3056 T (03) 9329 9622 F (03) 9329 5060

Our feature article this issue highlights women in plumbing.

Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre

Welcome to the June issue of Australian Plumbing. Can you believe we’re already half way through the year?

6/306 Albert Street Brunswick VIC 3056 T (03) 9356 8902 F (03) 9356 8929

Contacts Publisher

A successful business is one that has exceptional customer service, is well organised, adaptable and open to new opportunities. But the reality is that running a business can be challenging at times, and takes a huge investment of time, effort and money. Along with the daily pressures, annual events like end of financial year can also make things even more stressful! Our business issue is full of clever tips, simple suggestions and some new ideas to help you run, grow and develop an efficient and profitable plumbing business. We’ve got you covered with helpful information on everything from marketing and publicity, to quotes, estimating and insurance. Are you spending your marketing dollars wisely? Check out our essential guide to marketing to find out. Feeling the pressure as EOFY approaches? Carolyn Dorrian shares some simple tips to help you prepare for this busy time of year, while Eve John looks at some of the costly mistakes some plumbers make when quoting jobs.

Matt Reynolds shows how the power of one simple metric can help you track your progress and stay on top of your business. And Katherine Hawes takes a closer look at the legal side of two important areas of business: debt collection and social media. Our feature article this issue highlights women plumbing. They come from a diverse range of backgrounds and have all worked in other fields and they bring a wide range of skills and knowledge that they now apply to our industry. While they may not be on the tools, the women profiled in this piece are nevertheless proving instrumental in shaping the future of the plumbing. We’ve also go all our regular news and features, including information on workplace relations, product news and some great photos from recent Master Plumbers events. Happy reading!

Melissa Chrys Editor Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine

4 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | June 2016

The Master Plumbers’ and Mechanical Services Association of Australia (MPMSAA)

Editor Melissa Chrys T (03) 9321 0703 E

Advertising Elaine Mathews T (03) 9321 0798 E

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39 Welcome / 8 A message from our CEO and the Association’s President

Member news / 10 All the latest news from the Master Plumbers

Industry news / 21 Women in plumbing: shaping our industry / 30 Meet some of the women who are helping to shape the plumbing industry

News from Cbus / 36


Are you spending your marketing dollars wisely? page 46


From the trenches: the power of one / 40

Master manipulators: the workplace psychopath / 48

Matt Reynolds shows how the power of one simple metric can help you track your progress and stay on top of your business

The importance of personal accident and illness insurance / 50

Business basics / 42

Keeping your pipes healthy / 52

Katherine Hawes looks at the legal side of two important areas of business

Mastering Workplace Relations: Discrimination / 54

Construction industry update / 44 Mark Hoppe provides an update on insolvency risk within the Australian construction sector

The calm before the storm / 38

The essential guide to marketing / 46

Preparing for the end of the financial year

Are you spending your marketing dollars wisely?

Costly quotes / 56 Product news / 59

Disclaimer Statements and information appearing in this publication must not be interpreted as having the endorsement of being the opinion of the publisher, which takes no responsibility for the correctness of the statements made. It is a condition of purchase or acceptance of this publication that the publisher does not assume any responsibility or liability for any loss or damage which may result from any inaccuracy or omission in the publication, or from the use of information contained herein and the publisher makes no warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to any of the material contained herein. The publisher shall not be liable for any failure to publish any advertisement where such failure results from circumstances beyond their control. If advertising material is not supplied in accordance with deadlines, the publisher reserves the right to repeat any material previously provided by the advertiser. The publisher reserves the right to refuse and edit material. All prices and specifications are subject to change without notice. Copyright Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without permission in writing from the publisher.

In terms of plumbing, the critical issue is the retention of specialised skills and regulated work


from the President and CEO

125 years as industry leader

It’s an election year…

I’m pleased to announce that in 2016 we celebrate 125 years of the Master Plumbers Association.

As we move to publish this issue, a Federal election has been called for July 2016. This comes at a time where our country seems to be struggling with the impacts of globalisation and the need for technological change.

To celebrate this milestone anniversary we will be holding a gala dinner in August – it will be a fantastic opportunity for members both old and new to get together and celebrate our wonderful Association. Stay tuned for all the details! Earlier in the year the Association called for nominations for several positions on the National Council, which is a key component of the Association’s governance structure. By having frequent and regular elections, we hope to provide a greater range of members with an opportunity to get involved, contribute and help steer the direction of the Association in the future. The Association’s Board is elected form the National Council, which is made up from members across the membership categories. You can find out more about our Board and National Councillors on page 16 of this issue. Remember, your National Councillors are here to represent you when government or regulatory bodies decide to make changes that will affect our industry and your business. It’s our job to represent you and address your issues and concerns. So if you do have something you’d like to discuss, I urge you to contact one of your National Councillors – they are always happy to hear from you. You can contact your National Councillors or Board members by calling 03 9329 9622 or via email at This issue of Australian Plumbing is the business issue, so it’s a great time to remind you that Master Plumbers has lots of great ways to help you with your business. We’ve got you covered whenever you need assistance with workplace health and safety or advice and information on employment. As a member you can access discounts on a comprehensive range of training courses on offer at PICAC, as well as great offers on purchasing cars, equipment and insurance. Members also get access to our range of events and networking opportunities, including our regular (and very popular) Business Breakfast events. To find out how you can get more from your membership, contact our Membership Services team on 03 9329 9622.

Many voters see the effects of these changes as impacting negatively on their incomes, their work choices and their futures. There is a trend towards dissatisfaction with governments which leads to instability and short term solutions rather than structural reforms that are required. In terms of plumbing, the critical issue is the retention of specialised skills and regulated work. This is essential to continue to provide the level of community health and service that Australian consumers have experienced over the past decades. There is also a need to invest in the upgrading of plumbing skills in order to remain current with new technologies; both products and appliances that need to be installed and serviced. In Victoria, your Association and its industry partners at the Plumbing Industry Climate Action Centre, continue to invest heavily in training and skill development for these reasons. Our efforts have been boosted recently with a grant from the Victorian Government of $5 million to help in the development of further training facilities at Geelong and Narre Warren. These new centres will complement the existing world-class facility located in Brunswick. This commitment from both Government and industry is not only recognition of the fundamental importance of plumbing to our community’s health and safety, but will also equip the plumbers of Victoria to help meet our emerging environmental challenges. The maintenance of skills is critical and I encourage all members to take advantage of the training offered. To find out more visit

Ken Gardner CEO, Master Plumbers Scott Dowsett President, Master Plumbers

8 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | June 2016

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member news Milestone members Master Plumbers has numerous long standing members, many with proud family histories. This year 27 of our member companies achieved milestone status and ten of those members were present at the Annual General Meeting on 14 April 2016 to receive their Milestone Certificates. 125 Years

95 Years

75 Years


Cook & Lees

Worboys Plumbing Pty Ltd

The company was started in 1889 by Fred Atherton who had emigrated from England in 1867. Fred had worked as a plumber for John Danks and then started his own business, Fred Atherton – Plumber and Coppersmith.

Cook & Lees was started in 1920 by Norman Lees and Stan Cook after returning from World War 1. Norman had served at Gallipoli where he was one of a handful of the 8th Light Horsemen who survived the battle at The Neck.

Fred’s son Alfred Earnest Atherton expanded and incorporated the business in the 1920’s and transitioned the company into heating and ventilating contracting.

In those days, plumbing transport was either by walking, bicycle, horse and cart, or if you were doing really well, by truck. Early customers tell the story of the green Cook & Lees horse cart with a lovely chestnut horse named “Ginger Megs” who proudly hauled the cart around. So proudly and briskly did he perform this task that one day he was unable to stop coming down the Princess Street hill and hurtled through the intersection, coming to a halt with his head through the side entrance of one of Melbourne’s old green trams!

Worboys Plumbing Pty Ltd was established by George. M. Worboys in 1921. George built his business through his World War 1 service connections including Sir Gilbert Dyett and John Wren. For many years Worboys had a registered trade mark logo on the company letter head of two soldiers carrying riffles, and George Worboys would only indenture apprentices (legatees, sons of fallen soldiers) through Melbourne Legacy.

Alfred’s sons Alan, Fred, Kel, Ken and Ron continued the business through the 1940’s to early 1980’s era and expanded into air conditioning and stainless steel fabrication of hospital sterilizers and commercial kitchens. Stephen and Michael Atherton, sons of Kel Atherton, ensured the fourth generation of family were involved from the late 1980’s into the 21st century. Stephen and his son Tom, a fifth generation plumber, have carried on the family tradition and transformed the company in the last 10-15 years introducing manufacturing, installation and servicing of a wide range of sophisticated infection control products for use in the medical health and science laboratory industries. Atherton is the last remaining Australian manufacturer of these products. Whilst somewhat remote from the original plumbing business, the installation of these products requires an intimate knowledge of Australian Standard 3600 and steam pipe work, therefore still retaining a connection with the plumbing world.

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Stan Cook passed away in 1950 leaving Norman to run the business by himself. Norman was then joined in 1953 by his second son Ian. In 1967 now retired, Norman passed away, and in 2001 Ian’s eldest son Max then joined him to continue the family tradition. Ian retired in 2006 and Max bought the business from him. The company now occupies premises in Kew and continues to offer the same traditional and personalised service that it built its reputation on.

Following the death of George Worboys in 1945, employees Albert Tresidder and Harry Pearson took over the business, mortgaging their homes to keep the business running. Albert was one of George’s first employees and his sons George and Stan also worked for the company, followed later by his grandson Geoff, who today is part owner of the business. Norm Rhodes worked at the company for over 54 years and became Managing Director in 1978 after both Albert and Harry died in the same year. For the first 50 years or so the business ran a maintenance shop and new works shop at separate locations. The company is now primarily in the maintenance area, doing tenancy fit out works and smaller refurbishments with a lot of programmed maintenance service contracts in high rise buildings.

75 years

65 Years

65 Years

Nott & Drew Pty Ltd

W Hutchison & Son Pty Ltd

RC Urquhart Pty Ltd

Norman Harry Drew and Mr Nott commenced Nott & Drew sometime in 1911 but its origins can actually be traced back to the 1800’s when William Drew of Drew Bros. were plumbers and involved in the first sewer jobs in Geelong.

In the late 1800’s John Hutchison was operating a foundry in Bourke Street Melbourne, opposite the old McEwan’s store between Elizabeth and Queen Streets. His son William decided that foundry life wasn’t for him so he took to plumbing.

Robert Campbell Urquhart started the business in 1935 from the family home in Heidelberg West.

After the partnership between N.H. Drew and Mr Nott broke up, Norman carried on the business until his death in 1956 when his twin sons Norm and Doug Drew took over. Doug passed away in 1998 and Norm in 2013. Gary Drew was in charge until 2014 and today Jeff, Scott and Nathan Drew continue the Nott & Drew tradition with other family members Samantha, Rachel and Chris keeping it very much a family operation. Over the years Owen, Ian and Justin Drew have also worked in the business which now predominantly does maintenance work. One motto that has been handed down over the years and continues today is: “Look after your customers and they will look after you”.

He eventually started his own business W Hutchison, operating from a small shop at St Kida junction. In the 1930’s he moved to Inkerman Street, St Kilda and his son Herb joined the business which was renamed W Hutchison & Son. In 1960, Herb and wife Edie took over the business, moved to Carlisle Street, St Kilda and joined the Master Plumbers. In 1981, grandson Harvey, and wife Pamela took over and formed W Hutchison & Son Pty Ltd. The business operated from the family home in Carlisle Street until 2014. In 2014, the 100th year, the company was sold to Peter Beynon, who now operates the business from premises in Glenhuntly Road, South Caulfield. Peter had previously been running his own maintenance plumbing business for over 15 years. There have been many changes over the years, from using a pushbike to get between jobs in the early years, to running a fleet of service vehicles today. The focus has always been on providing maintenance plumbing services to estate agents, body corporates, local businesses and residences, with estate agents now being the company’s major clients. For the past thirty years, Harvey has had an active involvement in Master Plumber’s activities, and confirms it has been a very rewarding experience.

Congratulations to all the Milestone Certificate recipients

In 1939, at the start of the Second World War, he was approached by Brian Pitt of Pitt Waddel Chains in Preston to provide a hot water supply for his workers. Robert developed an innovative solution using a heat exchanger, attached to the exhaust pipe of a petrol driven tractor engine that was connected to a generator, that was used up to the early 1950’s. Plumbing was considered an essential service trade during the war years which is why Robert was not accepted into the army. Instead he fulfilled the important role of looking after the Eltham water supply between 1939 and 1945. From the late 1940s through to the early 1960s, Robert Urquhart continued to be an innovator and made his own Briquette hot water services. In 1951, he joined the Master Plumbers and during the 1950s and 1960s the company employed 3–4 men. Robert’s son Don took over the business in 1966 following Robert’s passing a year earlier from a brain tumour. By 1970 the business had expanded to around 10 employees and became RC Urquhart Pty Ltd, as it is still known today. RC Urquhart has a proud family history with Robert’s three sons, Robert, Donald and Ian all involved in the business as well as grandsons Paul, Robert and Cameron, granddaughter Donna, great-grandsons Luke and Robert Jnr, as well as brother in law Brian Gibbs and his son John. Many RC Urquhart employees have also shown long term commitment to the business – Ken Cato completed 30 years of service before retiring, and current employee Ted Yates who will reach 46 years of service this October, are just two examples. Today Paul Urquhart and Marshall Skinner are Directors of the company. The main focus of business is on commercial and construction plumbing, but there is still a connection to its original roots with a small maintenance department. | 11

member news Milestone members 65 Years

60 Years

60 Years

FJB Enterprises Pty Ltd

Brudenell Plumbing

Angus Eeles Plumbing

In 1924 Francis “Frank” John Bernard Marsh went to Garfield to put the roof on the new picture theatre, and after receiving offers of work, he decided to relocate there and boarded at the Iona Hotel.

Les Brudenell started his plumbing business from humble beginnings, working from a tin shed in his back yard. The shed was turned into a workshop during the day and it must have looked strange to the neighbours seeing someone carrying a 24ft length of spouting to nearby houses to do plumbing work.

Mr Angus Eeles established the business after completing his initial apprenticeship in plumbing at the State Government coalmines at Wonthaggi Gippsland, before moving to Melbourne to gain experience and complete his post apprenticeship qualifications.

Frank ran his business out of an AJS motorbike and side car and after he married Violet, he moved his plumbing business to premises opposite the picture theatre, where the business still remains today. Frank’s son John started his apprenticeship in 1954 and a few years later went into partnership with his father and the business name changed to FJB Marsh and Son. John took over the business in 1970 when Frank passed away. The business concentrated mainly on farm work, windmills and pumps, and later incorporated more domestic work. The company were Southern Cross agents for over 50 years and the business name has now changed to FJB Marsh Enterprises Pty Ltd. John’s eldest son Anthony started his apprenticeship in 1983, followed by his second son Matthew in 1991. After John retired in 2001, Anthony took over the plumbing business where Matthew also still works.

Like many, this small family business started out with a handful of clients, some of which are still served today. Les was in charge whilst his daughter Joan looked after the book keeping side of things. Les retired in 1979 when the old McIlwraith store in Ballarat Road, Maidstone was purchased and the family business continued with two of Les’ grandsons, Graeme Trembath and Glenn Preusker, in charge. Glenn eventually moved on in the mid-80’s to start “Splashdown”, a toilet hire company as featured in the movie “Kenny”. The business was able to expand with contracts from the Public Works Department for the connection and relocation of portable class rooms. Being based in the Western suburbs didn’t prevent it from winning many other jobs in other locations as well including Ballarat, Healesville, Bendigo and Queenscliff. The 1992 introduction of the Hosplan Code which made it mandatory to control the temperature of hot water outlets in hospitals, day procedure centres, schools and nursing homes, was a pivotal moment for the business. A simple change over system for thermostatic mixing valves was developed and the business now services over 4,500 thermostatic mixing valves throughout Victoria. Brudenell Plumbing is still a family run business. Les was often quoted as saying that “if you cannot pay cash for something then you cannot afford it”, a philosophy the company still believes is fundamental for success in business today.

12 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | June 2016

During the Second World War, Angus joined the Royal Australian Air Force where his skills as a coppersmith and metal fabricator were utilized in aircraft repairs, maintenance and production operations. Angus established his plumbing business in 1094, initially working from the rear of the family home in Eureka Street, the business then moved to Main Road, Ballarat where it operated for some years. In 1956 Angus joined the Master Plumbers, membership of which the current owners are proud to continue. In 1969 the business moved to new premises in Ebden Street, Ballarat where it has remained. Angus’ son Rodney joined the business as an apprentice in 1964 and later, after Angus’ retirement, was Managing Director of the company for 40 years until his own retirement in 2007. This heralded a new era for the business. Four long serving employees gained ownership of Angus Eeles Plumbing. The four are: Leah Mason (Administration), Chris Goldsmith, Greg Cox and Michael Shannon (all Trade Technicians). The combined business and technical skills of the new owners and management team has ensured unbroken service and commitment to clients. The focus of the business has moved over the years to mechanical services plumbing and is now well established and recognized mainly for high quality residential and small commercial heating and air conditioning projects.

member news Milestone members 50 Years

45 Years

Burwood Plumbing Service

Red Robin Plumbing Service

Tom Morrissey started the business in 1964 after completing his apprenticeship with McDougall and Ireland.

Red Robin Plumbing Service started out in 1970 as “Robin Lourensz Plumber”. Times were certainly different back then and in their first month of business they didn’t have a single English speaking customer, relying on family members or neighbours to translate for every job.

An office and storage area was built at the rear of his parents’ property and, after marrying Lorraine in 1967, the business was operated from both his marital home and from his parents’ home. At this time, the majority of work was from the Gas and Fuel Corporation preparing for conversion to natural gas. Several plumbers were employed and the business purchased a number of vehicles – too many to park at a residential property. A building was purchased in 1972 to garage these vehicles. It was a large building and Tom proceeded to make use of all the space by starting a plumbing supplies store. Burwood Plumbing Service and Supplies still operates from that same site. Burwood Plumbing Service has concentrated on domestic work and has many loyal long-time customers. Tom’s wife Lorraine, and daughter Narelle manage the business operations. Tom became Master Plumber No.63 in 1966 and the business continues to be a proud member.

One day after once again having the popular song “When the Red Red Robin” whistled at him again, Robin made the decision to have “Red Robin Plumbing Service” registered as the new business name. Robin’s son Brendon joined the family business as a plumber but not after some dissuasion from his father. Brendon’s architectural drawing teacher insisted he should be and architect because if he walked into any architectural business in Melbourne with his folio under his arm he would be assured of a job. But Brendon was determined to be a plumber. To consider putting him on Brendon’s father said he would have to achieve straight A’s with a max of two B’s on his school report. It was all the motivation Brendon needed. One day he walked into the office, threw his report book on the table showing the required scores and said “when do I start”. Brendon is now the proprietor of Red Robin Plumbing Service. From day one Red Robin Plumbing Service has been an active member of Master Plumbers, seeking out information and help to support their business and staff, and after 45 years they still see it as a great honour to be involved in this industry.

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Master Plumbers congratulates all members who achieved Milestone status this year. Member company

Years as member



Cook & Lees


Worboys Plumbing Pty Ltd


Nott & Drew Pty Ltd


G Whatley & Sons


W Hutchinson & Son Pty Ltd


RC Urquhart Pty Ltd


Turland Bros Pty Ltd


TL Easton & Sons Pty Ltd


FJB Enterprises Pty Ltd


Angus Eeles Plumbing


McLean & Boakes


CA & ME Robertson & Son Pty Ltd


Brudenell Plumbing


Onley’s Holdings Pty Ltd


B & E Trevena & Sons


Maffra Plumbing Supplies


Doncaster Plumbing Pty Ltd


MacFarlane Plumbing & Gasfitting Services


Balwyn Plumbing Service


Leonards Plumbing Pty Ltd


Red Robin Plumbing Service


Henricus Frencken


Ian Vincent


2016 Board and National Councillors

Scott Dowsett

Kevin Shinners

Norm Anderson

Adrian Murphy

Glenn Howard

Greg Tink

Rob Hansen

Daniel Smolenaars

Michael Tomlinson

Peter Hall

Peter Lord

Grant Donald

Peter Jensen

Rick Taylor

Lawerie o’Shea

Phil Kelly

The Association’s Board is elected form the National Council, which is made up from members across the membership categories. Our National Councillors are here to represent you when government or regulatory bodies decide to make changes that will affect our industry and your business. Remember, they represent you and are always happy to hear from you.

Master Plumbers welcomes the following new members, affiliates and corporate partners who have joined the Association since March 2016.

Welcome New Members

Ballarat Maintenance Plumbing

Austest Pipeline Solutions

Les Taylor Plumbing Services

Bendigo Plumbing and Gas Pty Ltd

T and F Plumbing

Elite Gas & Plumbing Pty Ltd

TBTI Plumbing

Richardson Plumbing Developments

You can contact your National Councillors or Board members by calling 03 9329 9622 or via email at

Melbourne District Plumbing

S.J Plumbing Central Victoria

Paragon Plumbing

Detailed Roof Plumbing

Ifixit Plumbing Services

Quicksure Plumbing Pty Ltd

Scott Dowsett – President Kevin Shinners – Vice President Norm Anderson – Vice President Adrian Murphy – Treasurer Glenn Howard – Board Member Greg Tink – Board Member Rob Hansen – Board Member Daniel Smolenaars – Board Member

BSC Plumbing

FPG Plumbing Pty Ltd

Myde A/C and Mechanical Services

Custom Airconditioning Aust Pty Ltd

Holden Plumbing and Building Pty Ltd

Your Local Plumbing Group Melbourne Pty Ltd

Mitchell Moore Plumbing

J Barratt & K Barratt

Bo Christopher Plumbing

Any Degree Roofing Pty Ltd

Hughes Group

Dafonte Plumbing

National Council Representatives Michael Tomlinson Peter Hall Peter Lord Grant Donald Peter Jensen Rick Taylor Lawerie O’Shea Phil Kelly

Chad Lewis Solutions

Commercial Mechanical Services (Vic) Pty Ltd

East West Master Plumbers

Vic Plumbing & Drainage Pty Ltd

Xceptional Plumbing Pty Ltd

Billi Pty Ltd

The People’s Plumber

Harvey Norman Commercial Project Division | 15

member news Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria Graduation On Tuesday 14 July, over 100 guests gathered at PICAC to celebrate the 2015/16 from Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria (PAV), the Master Plumbers’ group training scheme. Pancho Grech, PAV Manager, was thrilled to see so many apprentices graduate and said, “Completing an apprenticeship with a group training scheme can be challenging, but the rewards are worth it. “Our graduates have often worked for a number of host employers, which gives them a variety of on-the-job training and mentoring – it also means they must learn to adapt to diverse work conditions and environments. As a result they graduate as skilled tradespeople and flexible employees, which prepares them for good roles within the plumbing industry. “It’s great to see these guys come full circle and I know that in a few years I’ll be dealing with some of them when they become business owners themselves.” In the 34 years it has been in operation, the PAV scheme has trained, mentored and placed over 28,000 apprentices. “The completion rate for PAV apprentices is 95 per cent, this is significantly higher than the industry average of around 50 per cent,” says Pancho. Master Plumbers’ President Scott Dowsett, was once again impressed by the calibre of the graduates, saying: “The mentoring and guidance they have received from their host employers has been vitally important to their development as tradesmen. These graduates are the future of plumbing and I look forward to seeing the impact they have on the industry.” Thank you to the event sponsor Tradelink for their continued support. To find out more about PAV, call Pancho Grech on 0418 562 604.

16 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | June 2016

Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria Awards Following the graduation ceremony, Awards were presented to the most outstanding first, second, third and fourth year apprentices to encourage excellence in all areas of plumbing. 1st year apprentice award

2nd Year Apprentice Award

3rd Year Apprentice Award

4th Year Apprentice Award

Marc Nguyen

Luke Pettenon

Will Hogan

Calan Haydon

Sir Rohan Delacombe Award sponsored by Cooke & Dowsett

Peter Pratt Award sponsored by PBA Safety

Don Pritchard Award sponsored by Incolink

Alfred Atherton Award sponsored by Insinkerator

Named in honour of a past Govenor of Victoria, Sir Rohan Delacombe, who presented the first award at Government House on 27 July 1965.

Named after the late Peter Pratt, who was passionate about the advancement of younger generations through the plumbing industry. Peter made a significant contribution to the plumbing industry through many years of dedicated service to the Master Plumbers.

This Award is named after the late Don Pritchard, who was a member of the Executive Committee of Master Plumbers for many years. Don was involved in the administration of the Association and was a leading member of the Institute of Plumbing.

Named in honour of Alfred Atherton, whose family has been synonymous with plumbing in Victoria since the 1880s. Atherton is a founding member of the Association and has been a member for 125 years.

Amit Katoch Shariff Maaliki Craig Moloney Mario Perkovic Adrian Sacchetta Matthew Sattout Rhys Treloar Narith Ung

Master Plumbers also congratulates the following apprentices who also completed their Apprenticeship this year but were unable to attend the Graduation ceremony:

Daniel Devenney Alex Aregent-Jones Jordan Mayne Mario Rivera Elson Tuitupao Ashley Wilce

2016 Graduates Master Plumbers congratulates all the 2016 PAV Graduates Aaron Bridger David Creaco Devin Cutajar Jack Fraser Bruno Giordano | 17

member news Master Plumbers & Tradelink Business Breakfast Over 100 Master Plumbers’ members and Tradelink customers joined us bright and early on Friday 26 February to attend the first Business Breakfast for 2016. The MC was Nathan Brown and attendees also heard from various speakers and marketing experts including, Miles Primrose from Business Sight, Dave Hickling from AMS, Sebastian Caruso from SP Solutions and David Press from Tradelink.

A special thank you to Tradelink who help make these events possible. Master Plumbers is proud to have Tradelink as our Platinum Partner for 2015/16.

Master Plumbers celebrates 125 years! In 1891 a group of Melbourne plumbers came together to form the Master Plumbers Association. In 2016 we celebrate 125 years since we became Australia’s first Master Plumbers Association. To celebrate this important anniversary, Master Plumbers will be holding an Anniversary Gala Dinner on Friday 26 August at the Windsor Hotel in Melbourne. Further details of the event will be released to members soon, but prepare yourself for a fantastic evening of food, fun, music and celebrations!

Congratulations to our Door Prize winners! Lewis Tighe from DJ Murphy Plumbing Services winner of a DeWalt radio charger, sponsored by Tradelink. Kerry York from NR York Plumbing who won a workshop gift certificate sponsored by Business Sight.

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member news News from Master Plumbers Tasmania It’s hard to believe we are already half way through 2016! It’s been a flat out start to the year and there is a lot happening in the Tasmanian plumbing industry. Most importantly is the introduction of a continuing professional development (CPD) program for licenced plumbers and gasfitters commencing 1 July this year. The introduction of CPD will strengthen the invaluable role that we play in protecting the public and environmental health of Tasmania. Master Plumbers Tasmania supports the introduction of quality based CPD for our industry and will be working with members and the Government to ensure that what is offered is relevant and useful. To further support members we have designed a portal to allow all practitioners to access training, activities and information on the CPD program as well as creating their own profile to log CPD that is undertaken. We have also been meeting with the Ministers for Small Business and Building and Construction to discuss a range of issues facing our industry and identifying opportunities to support us moving forward under the Building Regulatory Framework Review outcomes. We are confident that support will be provided by the government to aid in the transition through the legislative changes. Angela Ayling Executive Officer

Industry update: Tasmanian Building and Construction Industry Training Board (TBCITB) Far sighted industry leaders in the Tasmanian Building and Construction industry in the 1980s saw the need for improved access and funding for industry training. This lead to the Tasmanian Building and Construction Industry Training Board (TBCITB) being established by an act of parliament in 1990 and commencing operations in 1991. The Act created the training levy that is collected and disbursed by the Board through the industry employers It also charges the Board with promoting training pathways and with providing advice to government on the training and skill needs of the industry. To that end the Board maintains a research capacity managed by Fred Lijauco. Fred has been with the Board for all but one of its 25 years. The Board is currently working with the MPAT CEO, Angela Ayling, to document a workforce development plan for plumbing and gas fitting. Workforce development is workforce planning plus recruitment, development and retention. The focus is on human capability and maintaining a workforce where workers have the capacity to apply and adapt skills and knowledge as required. The Board’s research shows that there are approximately 1300 people employed in plumbing and gas fitting in Tasmania of whom 200 are apprentices and 545 are licenced contractors. As a licensed industry plumbing and gas fitting has a pathway well defined through both training and regulation. The pathway starts with a Certificate Three apprenticeship to become a licenced practitioner, moves to licensing as a certifier and through to Certificate Four and full licensing as a contractor.

These technical skills are supported by training in occupational health, safety and wellbeing and the full range of skills needed to run a small business and employ people. All of these topics are covered by the Board’s Training Plan and receive subsidies to help with the costs. Please ring the Board on 62237804 and talk to Narika or Maree if you would like any advice on courses, providers or subsidies available. Other issues that the TBCITB are consulting MPAT on are the aging of the workforce that’s suggest large numbers of retirements over the next fifteen years and the new requirement for Continuing Professional development. Simon Cocker Chief Executive Officer

Changes to building legislation The proposed Building Bill 2016, which replaces the Building Act 2000, has now been passed by the lower house of parliament, and is likely to be debated in the upper house in the next couple of months. The Bill contains substantial changes to the way plumbing permits are granted by the permit authority by taking a risk-based approach to plumbing approval. Plumbers will need to be aware of the changes, and to know whether they can undertake work without first getting approval, or whether they will need to go through a formal approval process. For major work, plumbers need to submit “as constructed” drawings to the permit authority on completion of the work. These are both areas that Consumer, Building and Occupational Services will be focussing on once the legislation passes, with extensive training and support available to help practitioners adjust to the new regulatory processes. So it won’t be too hard for plumbers to accrue 12 points of CPD in the coming year!

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industry news Dates for your diary

PICAC secures critical funding for vital future development The Victorian State Government has committed $5 million for the development of two new PICAC training centres, to support the training needs of the plumbing industry. The two new vocational training centres will be located in Narre Warren and Geelong. These centres will complement the existing world-class facility located in Brunswick. This commitment from the Andrews Government is not only recognition of the fundamental importance of plumbing to our community’s health and safety, but is also to equip the plumbers of Victoria to help meet our emerging environmental challenges. PICAC CEO Shayne Le Combre applauded the announcement. “PICAC has gladly taken up the responsibility of meeting the continuously evolving development demands of our workforce, the industry and the communities we serve. As the industry appetite for quality training continues to grow, so too must our capacity to stay ahead of demand and the ability to expand to keep pace.”

From these three centres, in conjunction with state of the art mobile training delivery, PICAC will support plumbers’ development across the state. Working collaboratively with a reinvigorated TAFE sector, PICAC will continue to change and grow the industry’s capacity.

World environment day 5 June

The $5 million allocated by the State Government is game changing for the industry and means that PICAC can focus on providing plumbers with the best in training technology and skills development.

National diabetes week 10-16 July

The plumbing industry has committed to match this funding on a 2:1 basis. Industry will contribute $10 million to create the best in training facilities for the benefit of the state. Over 8000 course are delivered each year at PICAC and this announcement means that plumbers throughout Victoria can get the training they need to stay at the leading edge of industry practice.

Queen’s Birthday 13 June Red Nose Day 17 June

International Day of Friendship 30 July Tradies National Health Month 1-31 August Jeans for Genes Day 5 August Hearing Awareness Week 21-27 August Keep Australia Beautiful week 22-28 August Daffodil Day 26 August

South East Water issues warning South East Water is reminding plumbers and industry contractors of the dangers associated with lifting maintenance hole covers or accessing sewer systems, and that entry without accreditation may result in prosecution. Entry into the sewer environment can lead to injuries and fatalities, and South East Water has strict requirements and notification protocols associated with this work. Only accredited persons can access sewers or lift maintenance hole covers, and entry without accreditation could result in prosecution under the 1989 Water Act and the 2007 Occupational Health and Safety Regulations. In October of last year, a company was prosecuted for illegal access to one of South East Water’s maintenance holes.

The organisation was fined and also instructed to meet South East Water’s costs in bringing the case to court. South East Water is committed to reducing incidents of interference or illegal access to its assets, and ensuring the safety of anyone accessing its sewer network. “Any work carried out in connection with South East Water assets has the potential to result in significant harm to those involved, and that’s why we have such strict controls around this activity,”

said Mark McCormack, Network Services General Manager at South East Water. “Anyone lifting a maintenance hole cover must already be registered on South East Water’s list of live sewer operators, and be in possession of both a current confined space qualification, and South East Water asset entry number.” For further information on sewer entry requirements, please visit sewpublic/Building/Plumbers/Pages/ WorkingWithSewerAssets.aspx | 21

industry news Community Plumbing Challenge In 2015, PICAC participated in the Community Plumbing Challenge (CPC), held in Nashik, India. The CPC is an annual event facilitated and promoted jointly by the IAPMO Group and World Plumbing Council and sponsored by the Worldskills Foundation. The goal of the CPC is to provide each of its participants with an extraordinary personal and professional experience, challenging them to perform in their areas of skilled expertise, in testing international settings. Teams are required to collaborate, communicate and compete in an event that strives to build lasting and sustainable impacts for communities-in-need. Hosted by the Indian Plumbing Association, the 2015 challenge took place at School 125, a Municipal School situated in the densely populated south eastern area of Nashik. The primary objectives for the challenge were to upgrade and renovate the washing and toilet facilities at the school – where the children had no access to a reliable water supply or proper facilities. The project also focused strongly on meaningful local engagement, by giving lessons on hygiene to students and other community representatives. Teams travelled from around the world to compete – with India, the Basque Country (Spain), the United States and Australia sending highly skilled groups to participate. Sponsored by PICAC and RMIT, the Australian team consisted of two Plumbing Leads, Rob Mauracher and Aaron Bridger, Design Lead, Dale Fisher and Construction Lead, Kieran Gonzalez. The team was also accompanied by Team Leaders Greg Tink from PICAC and John Leahy from RMIT. Thorough preparation was undertaken by the Australian team in the lead up to the challenge. The first task was to prepare a design and construct specification to meet the brief set by the CPC organisers.

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Prior to their arrival in Nashik, teams were required to research, design and cost the proposed project and plan the implementation once on site. The Australian design centred on providing communal wash troughs in the largely empty wash rooms adjacent to the student’s toilets. These troughs were to be gravity fed by two new 2,000 litre poly water storage tanks that were filled via spasmodic supply from the local municipal water supply. This design relied on providing all new UPVC pipework from local suppliers. Once the teams were assembled onsite at school 125, each international team had to present their proposed solution to representatives of the school management and competition judges. After much discussion and review, a blended design was chosen incorporating elements from the various teams. Competitors were challenged by language differences including technical terminology, unfamiliar tools and materials, harmonising existing infrastructure, differing in opinions, taxing hot and humid weather and particularly tight deadlines. Finally, with a common goal and exceptional efforts from all international team members, the project was completed on time and successfully. Despite fatigue all teams were unanimous in their sense of achievement and were justifiably proud of the enduring legacy they were able to leave in place for every young student at School 125 for years to come.

Australian plumber, Aaron Bridger said of the experience “India for me was a once in a life time opportunity. Although it was classed as a competition I did not see it that way. For me it was a great chance to try and give back and do something that would make a difference. Once I arrived in Nashik, the task at hand really came into perspective along with the realisation of just how much work it was going to be. The children really made all this worthwhile – they were just so excited. Getting to work with the other teams was also incredible. If given the opportunity to do something like this again I would jump at it in a heartbeat, so much happened and was learned on this trip that you just can’t put it in to words.” School 125 now has a durable and sustainable plumbing system in place that will provide hand washing and toilet flushing facilities long into the future, along with a maintenance budget and local contractor in place to service and maintain these facilities. This is now also able to be replicated at numerous similar schools across the area.

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industry news Managing the flu this winter As winter approaches it’s a good time to think about flu management at your workplace. Flu in its full blown state can cause severe illness, including pneumonia and bronchitis, chest pains and, in some cases, can require hospitalisation. It is also incredibly contagious, which means that the workplace is a perfect environment for transmission. The most common symptoms, which come on very quickly, include tiredness, high fever, chills, headache, coughing, sneezing, running nose, poor appetite and muscle aches. It spreads through coughing or sneezing or by direct contact with the virus on hard surfaces or people’s hands.

Here are five simple ways employees can prevent the spread of influenza to their colleagues and others… 1 Cover your mouth and nose when you sneeze or cough – the flu virus can travel through the air when a person coughs or sneezes. When you cough or sneeze you should turn away from other people and cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve. Always wash your hands as soon as possible afterwards. 2 Wash your hands – washing your hands regularly is the single most effective way of killing the flu virus. 3 Don’t share personal items 4 Clean surfaces – regularly clean surfaces such as tables, benches and fridge doors becaseu the flu virus can live on surfaces for a number of hours 5 Avoid close contact with others

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It is part of an employer’s duty to take reasonably practicable steps to ensure the health and welfare of their workers. Organising flu injections and ensuring employees understand their responsibilities are two steps you can take to reduce the spread of the flu virus in your workplace. Flu vaccination can be administered to anyone who wishes to reduce the likelihood of becoming ill with influenza and an annual vaccination is recommended for people who are at increased risk of flu related complications, including all people 65 years or older.

Employees also have a responsibility to look after themselves and others in their workplace so they should stay home if they feel unwell, because if people are sick with the flu it can put them out of action for a week or longer! Although most people recover from the flu quickly, some people such as young children or older people can be seriously affected by the flu, which can sometimes even result in death.



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industry news World Plumbing Day 2016 Now in its fifth year, World Plumbing Day at PICAC in 2016 was a resounding success, with over 450 people attending the Industry Forum, Trade Expo and Apprentice Skills Competition, this year proved bigger and better than ever. The proceedings commenced with the Industry Forum. A capacity crowd made up of plumbers, apprentices and industry representatives from all over Australia, filled the Great Hall to listen to keynote speakers present on this year’s theme, ‘Preparing for the future: Technology, Skills and Environment’. PICAC CEO and World Plumbing Council Deputy Chair, Shayne La Combre welcomed guests and spoke to the importance of this year’s theme, before introducing the guest speakers. The Lord Mayor of Melbourne, The Right Honourable Robert Doyle, was the first speaker to address attendees. The Lord Mayor, who is also a Director on the PICAC Board, discussed just how important the issue of sustainability has been in his term as Mayor. Mr Doyle connected the vital role training has played in keeping the plumbers of Victoria up to date with the latest technologies and systems, in order to be able to implement many of the key water saving initiatives around the city that have made Melbourne a global stand out in the field. Mr Doyle stated “If you think about today…what is the source of our [Melbourne’s] future prosperity? It is the knowledge sector. It’s education. It’s clean-tech. It’s highly skilled people working at the highest level of their trade or profession.” Following the Lord Mayor, Justin Madden, newly appointed Deputy Chief Commissioner of the Victorian Building Authority (VBA) presented on the many benefits that come from good plumbing across the city and how the VBA will support the industry into the future. Mr Madden highlighted the strength and importance of the sector in contributing not only to the health of the community, but also as a key driver in the economy.

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Mr Madden explained “…critical to the delivery of the plumbing system required to sustain a modern, environmentally friendly, aware and growing population, is a pipeline of qualified and skilled plumbers and gas fitters. And that requires both a strong and focused education system and a fair and vigilant registration and licensing regime.”

The Apprentice Skills competition started early at 7am and finished in the afternoon after a demanding 6 hours of hard work put in by the competitors. The WPD Plumbing Apprentice Skills Competition is an opportunity for leading apprentices to display their skills and knowledge of plumbing and mechanical services in a practical demonstration.

Earl Setches, National Secretary of the Plumbing Trades Employee Union (PTEU) and PICAC Chair, officially launched the 2016 Plumbing and Fire Industry Awards (PFIA), with nominations opening on the 1st of July, 2016. He also discussed the great achievement by PICAC in winning the Australian Training Award for Small Training Provider of the Year in 2015.

This year the competition attracted candidates from as far north as Queensland, confirming the fact that it is truly becoming one of the premier apprentice skills competitions in the country.

Finally, Jeremy Forbes from HALT (Hope Assistance Local Tradies) addressed the audience to spread the word about the organisation and the services they offer. A not-for-profit, HALT aims to remind tradies they are valued by their community and direct them to support services, both local and national, should they need them. It was an important message for the industry which was very well received. Following the forum, attendees gathered for an industry luncheon and were able to visit displays at the Industry Expo, where representatives from event sponsors provided information about their organisations, new products and technologies. Exhibitors included Platinum Sponsors – Energy Safe Victoria, Gold Sponsors – Incolink, IAPMO, Reece and the VBA, Silver Sponsors – B.K.B Building Solutions, Bostik and Cbus and a raft of industry sponsors including Rehau, Testo, Rheem, Maurice Blackburn Lawyers and Standards Australia. Attendees were able to visit the expo where they were served a light luncheon and could take the time to learn about new products or services and network with suppliers, industry representatives and fellow attendees.

At 2:30pm the apprentice’s time was up and the judges reviewed the impressive show of skills and high standard of workmanship to select the finalists. First place for the Sprinkler Fitting competition was awarded to Odin Daniels from the Services Trade College in Queensland and the Plumbing top prize was awarded to Dale Bux who was nominated by his employer, Trio Plumbing. Special mentions also go to the second and third place winners of the Plumbing competition, Luke Pettenon and Matthew Zammit, both from Victoria Polytechnic and second and third place for the sprinkler competition, Brad MacKenzie from Fire Industry Training and Josh Von Bischoffhausen from the Services Trades College in Queensland. Planning for next year’s 2017 event has already begun, with events to be held across multiple PICAC campuses. For information about the 2017 World Plumbing Day Event to be held at PICAC, please contact or call 03 9356 8905.

World Plumbing Day is held on 11 March every year to celebrate the important role plumbing plays in our community | 27

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Women in plumbing: shaping our industry

Women in our industry might not always be on the tools, but they are nevertheless proving instrumental in shaping the future of plumbing. Traditionally, the majority of roles in the plumbing industry have been occupied by men, whether that was on the tools or in senior management roles. And while this might seem to be changing slowly, it is changing. Amanda Ogilivie from Biz Better Together, talks with five women who are quiet powerhouses in the industry, holding roles ranging from Office Manager to General Manager, Co-Owner to National Director. Coming from a diverse range of backgrounds, they all have previously worked in other fields, and bring and incredible depth and breadth of skills and knowledge they now apply for the benefit of the plumbing industry.

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We have learned a lot... It’s forced us to be proactive rather than reactive

Denise Maggio Office Manager City Edge Plumbing

At times, being a family owned and operated business can also be an unexpected hurdle outside of the business. “Sometimes you can be portrayed as a backyard business just because you’re husband and wife,” Denise says. To secure the future of their business, they decided to focus on fire service installations, upgrades and maintenance, sometimes supporting other plumbers in this field. “Nick has always liked this kind of work and he’s good at it, so we thought it was a good fit,” Denise says. “We’ve always done commercial industrial work even when we contracted to a major player, a top-tier national. We consider ourselves a specialist and are looking at adding related services.”

Denise Maggio runs City Edge Plumbing in partnership with her husband Nick. She started her career as a legal secretary, then married and had three children, after which she decided she wanted to work in HR. Denise returned to study, ultimately achieving a Graduate Certificate in HR. In 2012 Denise enlisted the services of a business coach, and she still sees a consultant once a month. She looks after the finances, HR, OH&S, the administration and assists with the estimating. She has also done OH&S courses related to the industry because she wanted a better understanding of plumbing. Denise says that sometimes the biggest challenge in her business is working with family. “It can be tough when you live with them as well,” she says. “The trick is to communicate clearly and have defined roles.” The company also employs two full-time plumbers in addition to Nick, and they’re considering putting on an apprentice, as well.

“There are a lot more women in the industry now, including female estimators. I did have one guy say ‘with all due respect’ and ask to speak to my husband, rather than talk to me. People don’t realise how much we can help them, without them speaking to one of the plumbers. I don’t need to know how to dig a trench or what way the valve goes in.” Denise has the sole responsibility of managing the office. “Down the track we are looking at getting an office manager – that’s in the business plan,” Denise says. “To operate in the commercial industrial sector you have to have the systems and processes in place. Plumbing is a highly regulated industry, unlike other industries.” “It was a bit like starting all over again, going out on our own,” Denise says. “The silver lining is that we have learned a lot. It’s forced us to be proactive rather than reactive. We look for diversity in the work and in the client base. We would never put all our eggs in one basket again, client-wise.”

Denise’s top tips: 1 Have defined roles so that everyone knows what they have to do. 2 Have systems in place so people can come and work for you and know what your standards are. 3 Time management. What I like to do is put all the family and school commitments into the diary and then I find I know what’s on and what I have to get done and I am much more productive. 4 Communicating with employees. Bring them in after three months, and then again after six months for a genuine two-way discussion. Be open, treat them like part of a team. 5 Realise it’s a competitive industry. You get knocked down. You have to get back up and keep going. “My approach is that people work with me, not for me. You can’t always give your people everything they want, but giving them the opportunity to have a voice is crucial. My advice is to get business advice from someone you trust; since doing this, it has opened our eyes and we have learned a lot.” “You have to not take things personally and maybe that’s something I’ve struggled with. I think maybe women have more trouble with confidence and self-belief than men do. My studying kicked a lot of this off.” “Whatever you are, you have to keep educating yourself, in business and personal skills. This is important, especially with women, who can get caught up with having families.”

“We are constantly told to develop a niche but we’ve learned about the need to diversify somewhere. It spreads the risk.” “Juggling a family and a business is always challenging. Luckily, we thrive on being busy. Nick works longer hours because he’s still partly on the tools. We used to work from home, but there was no separation. We now have a factory/ office. Now work is done at work. I don’t take work home but I will go in to the office and do it if I need to.” | 31

Women in plumbing: shaping our industry

Carmel Coate Executive Director National Fire Industry Association

investment dollar for dollar, so we established the Queensland premises first.” Carmel acknowledges that there are not many women executives in the industry. “But I honestly don’t feel I’ve ever been discriminated against. I’ve just done my job and they’ve let me get on with it. I’ve never felt there was any special treatment.” “There is a lack of female peers, yes, so there has not been much mentoring for me from the female perspective but I’ve been fortunate to get the advice and support when I’ve needed it.” “The willingness of the men in senior roles to enable me in my role indicates perhaps that there is not as much sexism in the industry as is believed. I’ve found people are happy to accept someone who can do the job.”

Carmel Coate’s career in the Fire Industry spans 32 years. Prior to this, she held roles with the Melbourne Chamber of Commerce, and a motorcycle imports company. It was while she was with the Melbourne Chamber, where she was the training manager and small business manager, that she heard of the opportunity in the Fire Industry that set her on the path to where she is today. She began as the Victorian Executive Director, holding that role for about four years before moving to the National Executive role. Carmel says her most satisfying achievement to date is the development of the training college in Melbourne. “It’s the first time this industry has had ownership of skills development and delivery,” she says. “We did participate with TAFE in development prior to this, but were always constrained by TAFE budgets. We are a small, highly regulated industry with expensive equipment. Now NFIA has a Registered Training Organisation where we directly deliver the skills needed by the industry.”

people are happy to accept someone who can do the job

“Currently we offer apprenticeship training courses as well as post trade through to Diploma. We now have two colleges, in Queensland and Victoria. The Queensland government matched the Industry

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“At the moment we are in a transition period as I am now on the career path to retirement. I’ve stepped back a little and the Board has appointed a Chief Executive Officer and another Executive Officer. I am now acting as the Director of Training and Education. This lets me work at my pet passion for a few years longer and it means I am here as a resource for the new Executive. I can offer support and advice, and I’m the keeper of a lot of knowledge after being here for more than three decades.” “Licencing was a huge challenge for the Industry. It required me to get regulators and governments to pay attention to us. It’s hard to get government to give money to an industry like ours because while from our point of view the money can be invested wisely, from the government point of view it’s a lot of money to an industry with small numbers, high expenses and a lot of regulations. It just doesn’t look like the same kind of return on investment as, say, in the construction sector.” “I overcame this resistance by just not giving up. My mother probably put it best when she says that when I’ve got an issue and a focus I’m like a terrier and I just don’t go away. And I am much better at fighting for other people than I am for myself. I am aware of and understand the limitations of the industry, but I won’t let it be used against us. “If you are going to get involved in an argument you have to be aware of every angle including the arguments that might be used against you. And then you can work on a counter-argument.”

Carmel’s top tips: 1 Always be yourself, don’t try to be someone else because not only will you be unhappy, you won’t be able to deliver for the people you work for. 2 Be prepared. You have to remain current. There will be new developments in your industry, for instance new technology and you have to invest time in knowing enough to understand the implications. 3 Be honest with yourself. It’s easy to have your own perception of who you are, but you need to know your weaknesses as well as your strengths. Be prepared to take advice where needed. 4 Learning how to delegate is very important. It’s so hard to let go and so easy to micro-manage. It’s a big thing to learn to delegate when you are responsible for outcomes. When someone is reporting to you and you catch yourself thinking you wouldn’t have done it that way, don’t fall into the trap of acting on that. You have to encourage people and give them the space to grow. 5 Respect yourself. Respect the people you work for. Respect the people who work for you. Carmel is in the enviable position of having no regrets in her career. Looking back, there isn’t anything she wishes she’d done differently. “Like all young people I thought I knew it all when I started out,” Carmel says. “I started working as a PA and I’d come home and complain to my husband that I could do a better job of it than the people I worked for. One day he told me to stop complaining and do something about it. It spurred me to take more responsibility. So I did do something about it. And here I am.” “I don’t have a university degree, but I don’t regret that. I did formal training over the years, diplomas etc., but I’ve mostly had a hands-on education. I had some fantastic mentors in the fire industry who’ve given me great support.” “I think there are three things you need to be successful in business; in any role, in any industry: Communication. Common sense. Respect. If you have those, everything else will follow.”

As a small business operator you wear a lot of hats

Paula Withington Administration Manager Roofrite Guttering and Roofing Systems

“But Roofrite is still here, more than 20 years on. That’s something I’m proud of. It can be difficult to continue to grow without compromising somewhere. I think it’s important to maintain your integrity and it’s a great achievement to have done that.” The couple now employ a couple of admin staff and a small roof plumbing team: four on the tools and one driver/ all-rounder. As the Administration Manager at Roofrite, Paula no longer has to do everything herself and is more of an overseer. She prefers to continue to manage the invoicing component herself because, “You do occasionally have to chase people up who are a bit lax about paying their bill,” and maintaining cash flow is critical to running a small business.

Paula left school young and started working at 16, starting a career in office administration. She worked at a chartered accountancy firm and was exposed to new technologies as they came into use. Roles in the recruitment and financial sectors followed. Later she completed a Bachelor of Arts in Professional Writing and worked as a freelancer, writing for The Age. By this time, she’d had a baby and her partner had started his roofing business. “The business grew, and the writing wasn’t earning enough money so I wound it back and started working in my partner’s business,” Paula says. “But nothing is a waste; skills are never lost.” “We were fortunate that my partner and I could both bring a variety of skills to the business. My partner had sales experience from his previous roles and that helps enormously with winning quotes. “It’s a massive challenge to continually generate more business. When you’re competing for jobs, it’s often not on a level playing field. And then meeting staffing needs within budgetary constraints is an added challenge.

Paula is also heavily involved in maintaining the company’s website. “In a small business you have to be able to do everything: bookkeeping, marketing, PR, recruitment, HR. I spent four hours today inducting an apprentice into the business.” “The HR part is always difficult as it is always demanding. As a small business operator you wear a lot of hats. It can be difficult to acquire all the necessary skills and juggle all those roles. Your education never stops.” “The biggest challenge is a lack of peers. To have a business breakfast with other people that work in a similar role in a trade-based business, to have someone to bounce administrative ideas off, would be great. It’s that particular aspect of working in a small business that can be isolating and frustrating – I’m always wondering what other people are doing about different issues and find it limiting not being able to pick someone else’s brain.” “I undertook a Graduate Certificate in Small Business Management partly to overcome this limitation. I was disappointed that there was a lack of examples in the course relevant to a trade business, but it was helpful in many other ways.”

“The growth of the business prompted us to move to an office. We started off above a shop and then moved to bigger premises with a warehouse and office combined. We’d never go back to working from home now.”

Paula’s top tips: 1 Education should never stop. It doesn’t have to be formal. Look at what’s new in apps, your competitors’ websites, read about new technologies, tap into any new trends and keep abreast of what’s happening with the recruitment market. It’s all part of your professional development. 2 Maintain integrity. It would be so easy at times to take the low road but you have to have a moral compass to be in business. Treat others the way you want to be treated. And have plenty of perseverance. Small businesses will always have their ups and downs. 3 Stay informed about regulations and legislation. You need to know about things that affect your business, like payroll tax. 4 Have a really good accountant. You need someone with good tax planning, someone who understands a trade-based business and who can work with you throughout the year. “I think that maintaining your business integrity is critical to staying in business and remaining successful,” Paula says. “We always keep in mind that money is hard to come by for everyone so when clients are investing in a new roof, it’s a big outlay and they expect it to last them for the next 25 years, problem free. You can’t compromise on delivering on that expectation.”

Paula and her partner have two teenagers and the work-life balance can be a challenge. “I try to work from 8.00 to 4.00 or 4.30 and let the other staff cover until 5.00,” Paula says. They did run the business from home for many years, and at the time, didn’t realise they weren’t getting any separation between life and work. | 33

Women in plumbing: shaping our industry

Alexandra Mannell General Manager Training & Industry Development Master Plumbers

preapprenticeship, apprenticeship and post trade training courses. We worked solidly for 12 months just on developing the apprenticeship materials before we took our first learners last year.”

there is some pushback but I’m careful about the staff I select. I look for people who are prepared to work hard on the job at hand and don’t care whether their manager is male or female.”

Alexandra manages a staff of ten full-time and part-time trainers and administration staff who deliver weekday and evening classes. Within that environment leadership is important.

“At this point I have never felt I have been discriminated against because I am a woman, but then I have never let being a woman stop me from going for the things that I want to do. And I am not finished yet, I have plans to continue to progress my career.”

“What we’re doing is hard slog. It’s innovative. I see my job as keeping everyone motivated and focused. We offer a best practice training delivery model and that requires a lot of attention. But part of my role also involves working strategically to assist the Association address the important issues facing the industry. There are issues affecting training such as quality compliance and funding and broader issues such as the aging plumbing workforce and meeting the skill needs of the future.”

“I took a fairly circuitous route to where I am today. My background is in hospitality, in Sydney originally, then Melbourne as I progressed to senior roles, then on to Tasmania. While I was in Tasmania I completed my Bachelor of Education and started teaching hospitality.”

I have never let being a woman stop me from going for the things that I want to do

Alexandra then made a conscious decision to leave hospitality and go to a completely different industry. She started working with public and private providers who delivered building and construction training.

“During that time I worked with plumbers a lot and found I enjoyed talking to and working with this group of trainers who were passionate about training in their trade. When the position of General Manager Industry Development came up with the Master Plumbers, it seemed like a great opportunity for me.” In the six years Alexandra has been with Master Plumbers, the training arm of the Association has expanded rapidly, commencing the delivery of apprenticeship training in 2015. “I’m really proud of what we’re developing here. We deliver

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Unlike some other industries, plumbing is not experiencing a significant drop in apprentice numbers. Alexandra attributes this to a number of factors. “We are a licensed trade that’s in good demand. You have to finish your apprenticeship to be able to work in the industry. Contrast this to other industries, where an apprentice can leave without completing their qualification and still find work.” “We run a Certificate II preapprenticeship course. It’s a 13 week course that gives learners a chance to find out if they are going to like plumbing before they take on an apprenticeship. Learners who complete that course tend to come back and be our next group of apprentices. We also offer post-trade training as the next step in a plumber’s career pathway.” “My job is to encourage our trainers to share their skills and knowledge with apprentices the right way, to enable them to become the best plumbers they can be. My role requires project management skills, leadership and the flexibility to work with a wide range of stakeholders.” There are not many women managing plumbing training schools, making Alexandra somewhat of a rarity in the industry. “I think I probably go about managing my department in a different way to other organisations. But that’s the whole point of diversity, isn’t it? I am always challenging my trainers – is this the best way to do this task? If you can’t explain it to me, how can you possibly explain it to an apprentice? Occasionally

Alexandra’s top tips: 1 Don’t talk yourself out of applying for opportunities because you are a woman. Never be afraid of a challenge or of trying something new. 2 You will learn from everything that you do. And you will be able to transfer these skills to other roles. Who would have thought to move from hospitality to construction! 3 You will be managed at some point by people who aren’t good at it – learn from their mistakes so you don’t make them. 4 Have the confidence to ask for what you want. You need to be active about how you approach your career and not wait for someone else to speak for you. 5 Educate yourself and be open to being mentored. Seeing yourself from different perspectives is invaluable. “I made the choice many years ago to get into education and for me it is a passion. I believe education is important and I’m an advocate of lifelong learning. Developing the best system of training for the next generation is definitely something I believe in one hundred per cent.”

Michelle Oakman Director Ones & Twos Plumbing

Michelle says her main challenge came with learning the products: “I went from designing websites and ad campaigns to learning about renovations and fixtures,” she says. The decision to start the company came about after Michelle found herself in a bit of a quandary. “I was burned out and I needed something different. I took some time off and had a think about whether I really wanted to go back into the same industry and I realised I didn’t. Noel is a plumber and gasfitter so I decided to combine his skills with mine and start our own business.” “I started two businesses, actually; the plumbing business and a marketing business. I thought I’d get the plumbing business up to speed and then hand it over to Noel, but I discovered I loved it. I’ve closed down my marketing business.”

Michelle Oakman operates Ones & Twos Plumbing with her husband Noel. Her background is in advertising and marketing. “I’ve gone from a corporate environment to a trade environment,” Michelle says. “The major difference is in the clients and the products I deal with, but the skills I use are transferable. It’s about how you are with people, and that is the same. It’s just in a different industry.”

The business has grown and Michelle makes use of the apprentices available through the Master Plumbers group training scheme when they need the extra help, with the work counting towards the apprentices’ training. “We’re recruiting at the moment, because we really need a fully qualified plumber and then we’d be looking at putting on a full-time apprentice down the track, but it’s very difficult. I’ve had ads on Seek, but so far we haven’t found the right fit.” The company focuses on residential services, dealing with customers direct or through real estate agents who manage rental properties. Michelle does all the preparatory work for the business, including bookings, quotes etc. She says she hasn’t experienced the issue of people calling and asking to speak to the plumber very often. “A lot of the time the person who calls is a woman. She may be a mum at home with the kids or working from home. She might have the task of making the call if there’s a broken toilet or a problem with the hot water system or she may be the driving force behind a potential kitchen or bathroom renovation. I think sometimes being a woman is an advantage in these situations, not so intimidating. A softer touch.”

Michelle says she always explains she’s not a plumber and that she can arrange for the plumber to call or visit. “But nine times out of ten, people are happy to talk to me. It was a bit more of a challenge when I was first dealing with suppliers, until I got to know products really well and we all got to know each other. That was just down to different communication styles.”

Michelle’s top tips: 1 Learn your products. You have to know the range, the prices, what’s new. 2 Your customer is your number one priority. 3 Supplier relationships are really important. 4 You need to be organised. 5 Pay attention to your accounting. “It’s not rocket science. You provide something the customer wants, which is what we all want, and that’s really, really good customer service. We get a lot of business through referrals from happy customers.” “Running your own small business is 24/7, you never stop. It’s fantastic to be doing something for ourselves rather than working for someone else.” “I think perhaps the most important thing is to choose your market and stay with it. I know there’s advice out there to the contrary, but you can’t be everything to everybody. Know what you do well, and do it.”

The clients and products are different but the skills I use are transferrable

Amanda Ogilvie is the Communications Officer for the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s “Biz Better Together” productivity initiative: When employers and employees work together, business is better. Join the conversation @BizBT | 35

News from Cbus The latest news and information from Cbus

What is SuperStream?

How does salary sacrifice work?

SuperStream is important for businesses that have to manage super payments for their staff. It is the new way for employers to make super contributions electronically, introduced by the Government to enable a simpler, consistent method of preparing and paying employee super contributions.

Salary sacrifice is an agreement made between an employer and an employee whereby the employer pays a set amount of before-tax salary into the employee’s super account, so that their contributions can be taxed at a lower rate of 15%.

What do I need to do? You need to ensure you’re SuperStream compliant by the due date below. To prepare for SuperStream you should: • Choose one of our online payment solutions (below) • Contact Cbus to ensure we have all the required employee information • Begin using the online system

Key dates Businesses with 19 or fewer employees: You need to be using SuperStream no later than 30 June 2016.

By making these extra contributions it can make a big difference to their super in years to come, where even small contributions can have the potential to make a significant difference to their lifestyle later on. The Government places limits on the amount which can be contributed to an employee’s super each year, and therefore it is important for the employee to monitor the amount being contributed to their super fund. To find out more about salary sacrifice and other ways employees can make additional contributions to their super, talk to our dedicated team of Cbus advisors on 1300 361 784, or visit

Employers with 20 or more employees: You should have been using SuperStream no later than 31 October 2015.

Is your business SuperStream ready? Call Cbus on 1300 361 784 and we can help.

Meet with a Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) If you’d like more comprehensive personal financial advice, the Cbus Advice Team can refer you to an accredited Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) who meets strict professional qualification and service criteria as set by Cbus and the Financial Planning Association (FPA) of Australia. The financial planner can offer you advice on a fee-for-service basis. Your first meeting is at no cost and any fees for advice will be agreed with you in advance. Advice by a Certified Financial Planner is provided under their AFSL authority. The financial planner will provide this information to you. For details about advice over the phone or face-to-face, members can speak to the Cbus Advice Team on 1300 361 784 or visit

Cbus Self Managed investment option Cbus Self Managed (CSM) is an investment option for eligible Cbus Super and Cbus Super Income Stream members who want greater investment choice and more control over how their super is invested. As an eligible member, with CSM you can invest your super directly in a range of asset classes from property and infrastructure to blue chip shares – it’s up to you. CSM gives you the flexibility to create your desired investment portfolio by combining it with your standard Cbus investment options. You can choose to build a whole portfolio of investments or invest only a small amount in CSM, or anything in between.

What can you invest in? • Shares in companies in the S&P/ASX 300 Index – the largest 300 companies on the Australian Securities Exchange (by market capitalisation). • A selection of Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) covering a diverse range of asset classes. ETFs are traded like shares but are structured like a managed fund. ETFs contain a collection of securities and generally represent a particular market index (e.g. ASX Small Caps). • Managed Investments, including assets such as property and infrastructure. • A selection of term deposits from ME and National Australia Bank. You can start a Cbus Self Managed if your Cbus super account is $40,000 or more. To consider if this option is right for you, read the Cbus Self Managed Investment Guide for full terms and conditions and all eligibility requirements. For more information visit cbusselfmanaged

General advice warning This information is about Cbus. It doesn’t take into account your specific needs, so you should look at your own financial position, objectives and requirements before making any financial decisions. Read the relevant Cbus Product Disclosure Statement to decide whether Cbus is right for you. Call Cbus on 1300 361 784 or visit for a copy. Cbus’ Trustee: United Super Pty Ltd ABN 46 006 261 623 AFSL 233792 Cbus ABN 754 933 632 62. Cbus Advice Team are representatives of Money Solutions Pty Ltd (ABN 36 105 811 836 AFLS 258145).

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Cbus online payment solutions Cbus Clearing House

Employer SuperSite

Salary Sacrifice and Superannuation

The Cbus Clearing House is a free super contribution service for Cbus employers that processes all your employees’ super contributions in one data file and one payment.

Employer SuperSite is an online account and payment facility. It is ideal for small businesses with all employees using Cbus.

As the national industry super fund for the construction, building and allied industries, Cbus is committed to helping you manage your employees’ super payments and maximising their retirement outcomes.

The Clearing House allows you to:

Employer SuperSite allows you to: • lodge your Contribution Returns

• Save time on paying your employee’s super

• make payments using BPAY, Direct Debit or Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT); and

• Meet your data and payment obligations under the new SuperStream rules

• access and update your records, including employee details.

• Pay super into Cbus and as many other funds as you need to, in one easy system

Advice through Cbus As part of your Cbus membership, you have access to a team of qualified financial advisers who can provide you with advice over the phone on a range of super topics. We understand that our members, are all different, which is why we have a range of advice options available to help you prepare for retirement.

Advice over the phone Cbus members have access to a team of qualified financial advisers who can provide you with advice over the phone on a range of super topics, including:

• super products – different types available • investment options – the right one for you and your goals • contributions – the best method for you and your circumstances • insurance – your existing cover, changing cover and how to make a claim • planning for your retirement.

Retirement seminars Cbus retirement planning seminars are free to attend and provide an easy way for members to understand a range of options.

One of the key ways that your employees can give their super a boost is to make regular salary sacrifice contributions. And with June 30 just around the corner – there’s not time like the present to look into this strategy to save for a super future.

They will help you explore how to: • make your money work harder, now and into the future • set up salary sacrifice and transition to retirement strategies • maximise Centrelink entitlements • replace your income when you stop working full time • understand the level of assets required in retirement. Members can book into a seminar using the online calendar at or call us on 1800 655 748 to find out when Cbus is hosting a retirement seminar nearby to you.

3 ways Cbus is building super futures in Victoria 1.

Investing in property and development projects through our wholly owned subsidiary Cbus Property1, creating jobs and delivering returns


Easy administration for employers, with online options to join Cbus and pay employees’ super


Industry–specific super products for members, including insurance cover, financial advice and free access to the Cbus smartphone app

Contact Scott for your business super needs Scott LaFerlita

Business Development Manager, VIC

0409 934 674

Cbus Property commercial project, 171 Collins St Melbourne Cbus Property Pty Ltd is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Cbus and has responsibility for the strategic performance and management of all Cbus direct property developments and investments. This information is about Cbus. It doesn’t take into account your specific needs, so you should look at your own financial position, objectives and requirements before making any financial decisions. Read the relevant Cbus Product Disclosure Statement to decide whether Cbus is right for you. Contact 1300 361 784 or visit for a copy. Cbus’ Trustee: United Super Pty Ltd ABN 46 006 261 623 AFSL 233792 Cbus ABN 75 493 363 262.


Master Plumbers VIC May 16 VIC BDM_template 123h x 185w _v2.indd 1 | 37 22/03/2016 10:20 AM

The calm before the storm preparing for EOFY

As the end of financial year approaches, Carolyn Dorrian, principle solicitor of Dorrian & Co, shares some tips to help you prepare for this busy time of year. June 30 always seems to sneak up on us doesn’t it? There is a lot involved in preparing your business documentation for the end of financial year. If you are a small business, it is highly likely that you’re in charge of everything from quoting and administration to marketing and bookkeeping. Business is running well and you feel like you’ve got everything under control when suddenly the end of financial year approaches and it feels like the calm before the storm. A smooth and easy EOFY is always preceded by great preparation, so taking action now will help you avoid a mad rush come June 30. If you’re a larger company, you should still take action as you are more than likely to have increased paperwork and more time will need to be invested into EOFY preparations. Organisation is the key to running a successful business and the EOFY is a great excuse to do more than just tax. Here are some clever tips to help you prepare for this busy time of year…

1 Make sure your company documents (such as your trust records, constitution, company resolutions) are current and valid in accordance with the latest laws. The Australian Tax Office (ATO) is getting stricter on businesses’ paper trails and evidence. 2 Review your cash flow to include big ticket items so you don’t get any surprises towards the EOFY. Make sure your cash flow includes (but not limited to) last quarterly BAS, last quarterly superannuation, fringe benefits tax, company tax return, personal tax return, accounting and/or auditing costs. 3 Make sure you are personally up to date with the simple work-related deductions and small business rules – especially in light of deductions and grants available to innovative small businesses through the current government. 4 Know the categories of your employees – for example, is he/she a full time or casual? This will affect your EOFY. Also, have your payment summaries sent to employees by 14 July even if you were not required to withhold any tax. 5 Check all your employment contracts too. There might be changes to workplace law that you may need to implement or an award that may affect your rate. Check with your lawyer who can easily revise these contracts for you or assist you in the termination process.

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6 Be organised and do things early. Putting yourself under pressure just before EOFY may increase risks, mistakes, business performance and efficiency. Financial data is important for decision making to business owners, directors and management staff as well as legal documentation throughout the year – not just the EOFY. 7 Follow up and urgently review those that owe you money but haven’t paid you within your required time (i.e. your debtors). Get a collection agent or engage a lawyer to draft a letter of demand prior to starting your EOFY lodgement so you know whether to include them as bad debt or not. You may be able to write them off and/or use them as a tax deduction or offset for your company. 8 Check whether your client, customer or consumer contracts and/or agreements are still valid and if so, its term. While this is not completely tax related, the EOFY is an important time to get all your affairs in order and check your cash flow. Renew or amend your contracts/agreements if you need to and perhaps talk to your lawyer about extending contractual periods.

About Carolyn Carolyn Dorrian is the Principal of Dorrian & Co Lawyers, an interstate new age law firm focusing on top-tier quality legal and advisory advice at fixed affordable rates. To find out more visit

Top five plumbing audit ‘fails’ present plumbers with a learning opportunity The Victorian Building Authority (VBA) conducts compliance audits and inspections of plumbing work with the aim of ensuring plumbing laws are complied with. The on-site audits cover a sample of plumbing work for which a compliance certificate is required. In 2014-15 more than 7,500 plumbing audits were completed by the VBA with the vast majority of work passing with flying colours. However, the program has revealed some areas of consistent failure that need to be addressed. The top five failures identified by the VBA in the audit were: 1 Heated water at the fixture outlets not delivered at the appropriate temperature. 2 Unsatisfactory drainage installation in unstable ground 3 The use of unacceptable insulation materials surrounding the hot water pipe work 4 Appropriate backflow prevention devices were not installed

The audit program was designed to not only protect consumers, but to provide assurance to plumbing practitioners that the work they had completed met the requirements of the Regulations and standards and codes. The topics that show up in the audit program were also among the issues raised by practitioners with VBA staff at the recent statewide plumbing industry seminar series.

In addition to the top five issues identified through the plumbing audit program, information is available on an extensive range of plumbing work, from Roof plumbing and below-ground sewer and Stormwater drainage to Grey or Recycled water (non-drinking) and Fire protection. Visit the VBA at

Plumbing Audit and Inspection Checklists and Technical Solution Sheets are available for viewing or download from the Practitioner Resources section of the VBA website ( practitioners/practitioner-resources/ plumbing-practitioner-resources).

5 Use of inappropriate component(s)

Your authority to build with confidence. If you’re a builder or a plumber, the Victorian Building Authority is your authority. We’re there to help maintain the integrity of your industry by ensuring all builders are registered and all plumbers are registered or licensed. As part of that, we undertake inspections, investigations and audits of builders and plumbers across Victoria. We also provide advice and information, so if you have any questions or problems, we’re there to help. Because, in the end, we’re your authority to build a stronger, smarter and safer industry. So you, and all Victorians, can build with confidence. | 39

one. The power of

Matt Reynolds shows how the power of one simple metric can help you track your progress and stay on top of your business. Here’s the thing about the business of plumbing – it’s complicated. Not much of this industry is cookie cutter in nature and that includes the numbers. Attempting to hold a pot of glue in one hand while balancing the books in the other is enough to drive a perfectly capable self-employed plumber around the bend.

Traditionally numbers are not a plumber’s best friend, especially the ones that make up financial reports. If on the ground experience teaches us anything in this trade, it’s that things can and often do go wrong. The numbers are no different. Staying across the financial side of business is essential to ensure you remain profitable, build and prosper as you choose to. The size and nature of your business determines the relevance of the standard items including revenue, cost of goods sold, interest, depreciation etc. The problem with all these numbers is that even if you do understand them they are all generated retrospectively and are of next to no use for keeping your affairs on track day-by-day which is the primary goal of a business operator. Here’s the good news, while the business of plumbing can be complicated, tracking your progress is not and you don’t need to be an accountant to do it. There’s a perfectly good reason to abandon all the items on your financial reports and replace them with just one single figure which should bring a smile to the faces of all of us who trade shovel for pen by necessity rather than enjoyment.

The process takes some initial analysis of your business and is based on the theory of the lead domino. Inside every company lives factors (in our case figures) that influence all others. Once identified, you have a single point of measure and control which negates the need to monitor several variables at once. Dominos fall in line behind their lead, the business world refers to these leads as key performance indicators. To find the dominos that lead the financial health of your business you need to look at the major source of revenue and the major source of cost inside your business. For service and maintenance businesses that charge by the hour, labour costs are likely both. Typically, the more hours you can charge and the less you have to pay for those hours, the higher your profit. Simply dividing your annual overheads by your hourly labour rate gives you a breakeven point for the year. Going further and dividing that figure by your total available working days establishes a base line which is easily monitored each and every day. At glance, you will know exactly how you are tracking. Billing above your daily minimum ensures year end profit.

From the trenches [Matt Reynolds] Matt Reynolds is an award winning plumber who writes about the game as an industry insider. You can connect with him on Twitter @MrMattReynolds or find him as the Director of XRM Plumbing Services on LinkedIn.

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Tax time then becomes a time of confirmation, not a process of discovery

It’s not an exact science but you could argue this method of tracking your performance is more critical to your overall success than the common lagging figures because it both identifies problems and recognises great performance in real time, at the point of incubation, so you can take any required action immediately. Tax time then becomes a time of confirmation, not a process of discovery.

The key here is to use numbers that are simple and measurable. No level headed business operator has the time or desire to record the number of kilometres each of their staff travels daily to then multiplied by their great auntie’s birthday and calculate sales on a consistent basis in dog years. The goal here is to track the success of your business in less than one minute per day, not to impress NASA employees.

Business is simple, if you allow it to be. As a former CFO of a major bank told me in an interview for this article “99% of business owners don’t even think about it, you must be on top of your business. A key metric forces you to stay on top”. That’s the power of one.

Apprenticeships for our industry. Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria is the industry’s group training scheme dedicated to providing plumbing businesses with high quality, highly skilled apprentices to meet their needs. Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria is a flexible and cost effective way of accessing extra labour when you need it most.

To find out more, call (03) 9329 9622 or visit | 41

Debt collection fundamentals

Business basics. Principle solicitor Katherine Hawes looks at the legal side of two important areas of business.

You’ve invested your time and money in completing a job, and now the customer is refusing to pay – so what can you do now? Cash is king for many plumbing businesses so it pays to be aware of the steps that you can take in order to make the debt collection process less painful. One of the first steps to take even before taking on a job, is to check that your terms and conditions of trade are legally valid and go some way to protecting your business. In particular, if a large amount of money is involved, I would recommend sourcing the services of a lawyer to check any contract prior to signing or commencing any work. Secondly, if any variations or additions to the job are agreed, you should always get this in writing. Going forwarded, this will also make it easier for you to chase up any debt. Once a payment is not received, there are several ways to go about collecting outstanding debt:

Sending reminders and letters of demand Before taking up any formal methods of debt collection, advise your debtor (the person that owes you money) that payment is due by sending them a reminder email or letter of demand. Do this as soon as the payment is late. If they do not agree to pay, then you should take up more formal means to collect their debt.

Making a claim under the Building and Construction Security of Payment Act

With over 20 years’ legal and business experience, Katherine Hawes is the founder and principle solicitor of Aquarius Lawyers. To find out more about her fixed rate small business packages visit

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The objective of the Building and Construction Security of Payment Act (NSW) is to guarantee that any person who undertakes construction work, under a construction contract, is entitled to receive a progress for work done or goods and services supplied. This includes plumbers or those who provide goods and services related to plumbing. The good news is that even if your terms of trade contract do not say that you are entitled to progress payments, this law grants you a statutory entitlement to be paid .

If you are a head contractor or a sub contractor, you can make a payment claim under this law – Even if you do not have a written contract, or the work is incomplete. However, if you do have a written contract, this will make it much easier for you to make a claim. There is a similar piece of legislation in each state but they do differ in time limitation. For example in NSW, you can only make a claim for work completed in the last 12 months. However, in South Australia, you must make a claim within six months. You should keep the following in mind when making a claim: 1 the claim must be in writing and include a statement such as “This is a payment claim made under the Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act 1999 NSW”. 2 It must state the amount due 3 A description of the work done or the goods and service supplied must be detailed. 4 The claim needs to be served at the time specified in the contract or after the reference date in contract. Be sure to also record the date when the respondent received the claim The respondent has a time period by which they must make payment. If they do not pay in time, the matter will be referred to an adjudicator.

Using Debt Collection Agencies A debt collection agency is a good option if you do not want to pursue the debt yourself. However, it is important to choose a reliable and reputable collection agency so do some research first including enquiring about their recovery rate. There are agencies that work on a no collection – no commission basis which means that if they are not successful in collecting your debt, you will not have to pay them. Sometimes, a debt collection agency will come to a settlement with the debtor which means that they will agree on a specific amount that the debtor will pay to settle the debt. This amount can be often be less than the actual amount owed to you so make sure you discuss this with the debt collection agency. Finally, you need to be proactive. Don’t let unpaid debts sit there for too long. The sooner you approach the customer, the sooner the payment process can begin.

Social media 101 Social media can be a fantastic tool for publicizing and promoting your plumbing business and is ideal for notifying your customers of new products and services and sharing photographs of your work. However, always remember that in posting on social media, you are communicating with the public and therefore need to make sure you stay on the right side of the law. Posting the wrong thing online can really land you in hot water, so you need to be aware of the potential legal issues that can arise. As a business owner, keep in mind that you are responsible for what is posted on your site – irrespective of whether you personally uploaded a post, or it was done by a member of your staff . Therefore, it is a good idea to schedule in routine checks of your social media pages to ensure that no one is posting illegal content. Some of the most common legal areas related to social media are defamation, confidentiality, copyright, misleading and false claims and privacy:

Defamation Defamation can be defined as the deliberate spreading of information about an individual or a business to other people. If this information has the potential to diminish others’ opinion of the individual or business, then it is classified as defamatory Therefore, If you post something online that can potentially damage someone else’s reputation, you may be guilty of defamation. In addition, even sharing a post that you didn’t create to other people online can also get your into trouble! For example, if you re-tweet someone else’s comment about a competitors work being of poor quality, they can potentially sue you for defamation.

Confidentiality When posting on social media, you also need to ensure that you don’t break any laws relating to confidentiality. This can include your customers’ names, the work you are doing for them, or even the location of their premises. As a business owner, be careful not to share any of your trade secrets online as well, otherwise you will soon find that word spreads quickly and it may not be long before your trade secret is no longer a secret!

To guard against confidentiality issues, implement a social media policy in your business which prohibits employees sharing confidential information on their personal social media accounts as well as on your business pages.

Copyright As soon as you design a creative work in Australia, you automatically become the copyright holder of the work. There is no need to apply for copyright; you receive its protection anyway. Therefore, when posting images or words online, or even designing your business website, you need to ensure that you do not try to pass off someone else’s work as your own as doing so would infringe copyright laws. There are a range of online applications available that can assist you in sharing other peoples work ( with the use of a watermark etc) but the easiest way to avoid violating copyright is to seek permission from the original creator.

Misleading and False claims It is illegal to make false or misleading claims about your business both on and off line. Therefore, when to comes to social media, you need to be completely truthful and have evidence in place to back up any claims you make. For example, if you create a post on Facebook saying, “We are the only plumbers in Australia with access to this exclusive plumbing technology”, you need to be able to substantiate this claim.

Privacy The Privacy Act (Cth) exists to protect people from having their personal information misused. Therefore, it is important that you do not post any personal information about any of your clients, suppliers or employees online as this my violate their privacy. In addition, when customers provide you with personal information, you should only use it for the purposes that have been agreed upon. | 43

Construction industry update. Mark Hoppe, managing director, Australia and New Zealand, Atradius provides an update on insolvency risk within the Australian construction sector. The Australian construction industry is one of Australia’s largest sectors by revenue and employee numbers. According to research firm, Ai Group, it is the third-largest industry in the country, contributing eight per cent of Australia’s Gross Domestic Product, and directly employing nine per cent of the nation’s workforce.1 Yet, for all of its size and economic weight, the construction industry’s susceptibility to cash flow troubles and insolvency remains uniquely disproportionate compared to most other sectors. In 2014, for example, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) reported that 1,802 construction organisations in Australia had collapsed. In comparison, there were just 218 collapses in agriculture and 472 in manufacturing.2 This is interesting, given that the Australian economy is generally stable compared to other countries in the region and around the world. The Australian construction industry wasn’t affected by the 2008 economic shake-up in the same way the industry in markets such as the United States and Europe were. However, despite a relatively strong and stable local economy, there is some deterioration in the insolvency landscape, according to a recent Atradius Insolvency Forecast report, and the construction sector plays a part in that trend.3 The economic slowdown in China and fluctuating commodity prices are affecting the insolvency risk posture of other industries, such as mining. However, research conducted by Atradius suggests that the local construction sector is more heavily affected by late invoice payment and insolvency than by any other specific external factor.4

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In fact, recent Atradius research has found that Australian businesses are, on average, more likely to be at the receiving end of late invoice payment than those in the broader Asia Pacific region.5 Up to 18 per cent of Australian businesses surveyed by Atradius have indicated that their invoices were unpaid three months or longer past their due date. In the broader Asia Pacific region, this figure was closer to 10 per cent. While these figures are across all industry sectors, payments in the construction sector take between 90-120 days on average. Notifications of non-payments have increased and the current level is high. It is often the smaller and medium-sized players that are hit by cash flow troubles, as larger organisations become insolvent. There is a trickle-down effect when this happens, with subcontractors and suppliers often being hit hardest by the failure of big players. Small businesses across the board are most at risk of insolvency, with almost 80 per cent of corporate insolvencies in Australia during the financial year ending June 2015 being for small businesses, according to ASIC. The FY 2014-15 figures are in line with ASIC’s findings for the financial year ending 2014.6 If this trend is anything to go by, the smaller players in the construction industry will continue to count for an overwhelming share of insolvencies in Australia throughout the remainder of the year. There are various reasons for this trend. Builders operating at the small business end of the sector often undertake jobs for one or two clients at a time. Unlike large construction firms with several clients at once, or more established clients, smaller builders face serious cash flow problems if a client doesn’t pay for a project on time.

The continuously-high rate of insolvency in the construction industry was the reason the government launched its Senate Committee investigation into the sector. According to a report by the committee, insolvent businesses in the local construction industry had a total shortfall of liabilities over assets for their creditors of $1.63 billion during 2013-14, based on ASIC’s figures.7 This highlights how hard-hit suppliers and other businesses up the supply chain can be when companies go out of business. While the Senate committee investigating the construction industry has laid down a number of recommendations, it will take time for most of them to be implemented, if they are at all. It’s also reasonable to expect further insolvency activity in the industry will continue throughout the year. As it is, the latest Atradius study suggests that construction performance in Australia remains subdued, mainly due the massive decrease in mining-related heavy industrial, rail, and port infrastructure construction activities after the end of the commodity boom.8 This follows a contraction in 2015, and is despite an expected upturn in the medium-term, driven by higher investment and increased economic growth. As of 2015, residential building spending was expected to increase further in 2016, fuelled by low interest rates, pent-up domestic demand and foreign investment. Clearly, this forecasted trend is yet to hit. According to Peter Burn, head of policy at Ai Group, unless commercial construction and a pick-up in infrastructure investment can be maintained, it is unlikely that the construction industry will be a source of growth for the economy or jobs in the coming months.9

Meanwhile, construction businesses in New South Wales may benefit from infrastructure investments, while those in Queensland and Western Australia may struggle in a subdued market. WA, in particular, has seen a dramatic drop in new home constructions. This is likely a result of a slowdown of the resources sector in that state. Overall, construction insolvencies are expected to level off this year, but the rate of insolvency remains high. Debt levels have increased and margins have decreased, especially for smaller businesses with little ability to differentiate themselves, and which, therefore, rely on price competition to acquire orders. Continuing to compete on price can force smaller players out of the market altogether. The additional risk of non-payment, or even late payment, means smaller operators face a tough competitive environment. The risk of insolvency does depend somewhat on particular subsectors, with civil works maintaining a relative amount of growth thanks to government investment, while some mining infrastructure projects are slowing down. It is also important to take into account regional differences. For example, while engineering construction in Queensland and WA remains subdued, it is expected that New South Wales companies will benefit from infrastructure investments such as roads and telecommunications. With the national economic forecast predicting continued subdued industry performance, players in the construction sector will want to prepare for non-payment of invoices.10 This is particularly true for smaller operators and suppliers. Although many construction companies may never entirely recover from unpaid debts already incurred, it is possible for business owners to easily and affordably protect themselves against the risks threatening their business.

Trade credit insurance stands as a way for businesses to protect themselves from non-payment. It also provides crucial information regarding the solvency and reliability of potential business partners. This can give even smaller companies the confidence to trade more freely, potentially developing more lucrative arrangements with customers. Construction works are most often the first assets to be insured. However, one of the largest assets on the balance sheet, the trade receivables, is commonly left uninsured and vulnerable to risk. The average business receivables asset makes up 30 to 40 per cent of the ledger, meaning that, without appropriate credit insurance, the business is at high risk. Credit-insured companies are safeguarded against risks that could otherwise have crippling effects. Furthermore, when construction businesses fail to perform credit checks on all of their customers, they may start projects for businesses at high risk of default payments. A credit insurance provider can help mitigate the risk of unreliable customers by providing valuable insights and knowledge about customers.

A major customer going into default during or after a build could paralyse a construction business without credit insurance to cover the unexpected income hit. For construction businesses, credit insurance can provide a valuable extension to the company’s credit management practices and help to ensure the business’s revenue and bottom line are protected.

1 Australia’s Construction Industry: Profile and Outlook, July 2015; Ai Group Economics Research; Ai Group; 2015. 2 Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) (2014) 3 Insolvency Forecasts; Atradius Economic Research; February 2016. 4 Ibid. 5 Atradius Payment Practices Barometer 2015; October 2015; Atradius; 2015. 6 Corporate insolvency statistics; Australian Securities and Investments Commission; 2015. 7 ‘Insolvency in the Australian construction industry’ report; Senate Economics References Committee; December 4th, 2015. 8 Market Monitor, February, 2016; Atradius 9 Ai Group, “Australian PCI: Construction slips further in February”, (March 2016) 10 Atradius Market Monitor: Focus on construction industry performance and outlook, February 2015

With access to live data on millions of businesses, credit insurers act as the business’s eyes and ears on the ground, checking that prospective customers are stable, creditworthy, and have a reputation that meets the required standards. This helps construction businesses focus on sales and growth, protect their bottom line, and make better-informed strategic decisions; a valuable trait in the building sector. Meanwhile, businesses often assume longstanding customer relationships and well-known customer brands can provide assurance against bad customer debt. However, it is risky to gamble on commercial assumptions when trading on credit terms. | 45

The essential guide to

accurate marketing. Darren Urquhart from Rise Local shares how to spend your marketing dollars wisely. Are you concerned that you are wasting your marketing dollars by advertising to the wrong people? Are you holding back from marketing your business because you don’t know exactly who to target? In this article I will show you how to advertise only to the people who are most likely to buy your services. I will also show you how to avoid wasting money advertising to people who will not buy your services. The key is “accuracy”. Accurate marketing produces the best results for the lowest cost. “Accurate marketing” is about connecting with the right people at the right time. You need precise aim to get the best results from your marketing dollars.

Who should you be targeting? People are at different stages of the buying process. You need to aim for the people who are most likely to become a customer. Some customers are much cheaper to acquire than others. Think about all the people in Australia. The diagram below represents everyone in the country. We can put everyone into one of four categories: 1 People who are looking for you by name, right now. 2 People who need your services in your area, right now. 3 People who will one day need your services, but not right now. 4 People who will never need your services.


People who are looking for you by name, right now.


People who will never need your services.


People who need your services in your area, right now.


People who will one day need your services, but not right now.

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Let’s look at each of these groups:

1 Top priority

2 High priority

3 Lower priority

4 Don’t bother

This is the smallest group but they are also the cheapest customers to acquire. These people are searching for you by name. They have already decided to use your services and just need to call you.

These people are searching for your service in your area. If someone needs a plumber in a suburb or town that you service, you want them to find you. This group is very important to the growth of your business.

These people will one day need your services but not right now. They are the vast majority of the people in your service area. Most people don’t need a plumber today, but they may need one in the future.

This group is made up of all the people in Australia who will never buy from you. It is by far the largest group. It puts the size of your actual market into perspective.

Most people use Google to find a plumber. They might not be searching for you by name, but they are searching for the next best thing – a plumber to help them. They are ready to buy.

When you use these marketing tactics you are trying to get someone to think about your business, even though they don’t need you right now. You are trying to build awareness of your brand and your services.

These days most people will look you up on Google. You must connect with all of the people looking for you by name. Secure all the clicks, all the calls and all the jobs. They are your lowest cost sales. Key Marketing Activities: • Google Adwords • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) • Listings on major directories (Yellow Pages, True Local etc) Tip Do a search of your own business name on Google. Is a competitor’s ad appearing above your listing? They could be poaching some of your leads. You must run an ad on Google for your own name to make sure no one picks off your customers.

This group is much larger than than the Top Priority group who search for you by name. Before you do any other marketing, make sure you are connecting with this group. They are some of your best leads.

There is a place for this sort of marketing and it can be effective. But you should spend money on this sort of marketing only after your higher priority groups have been completely covered.

Key Marketing Activities:

Key Marketing Activities:

• Google Adwords

• Email Marketing

• Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

• Facebook Advertising

• Listings on major directories (Yellow Pages, True Local etc)

• Direct Mail

• Lead generation websites (HiPages, Service Seeking etc) Tip Do a few searches on Google for the word “plumber” plus a few of the suburbs or towns you service. Does your website appear anywhere on the first page? It is possible to appear up to three times on page one of Google and drive a lot more sales.

• Social Media • Vehicle & Building Signage

It may sound obvious, but it is important you do not spend on the people who will never buy from you. Ensure no leakage of your marketing budget into this group. There are many reasons why some people will never buy from you. For example, they are too far away or they don’t own a property or they DIY everything. Proper management of your marketing will make sure you don’t waste money marketing to this group. Tip Do you get calls from people who are outside your service area? Do you get calls from people who are looking for services that you don’t offer? This could be a sign of mis-directed marketing activities.

• Print, Radio, Outdoor Tip Write a list of all your current marketing activities. How much of your marketing budget is being spent on people who don’t need your services right now? Could that budget be put to better use targeting people who need your services immediately?

The next step Now is the time to focus on accurate marketing. By getting your priorities right you can invest in marketing with confidence, knowing that you are targeting the right people at the right time. You can download a Digital Marketing Checklist for Plumbers, by visiting Darren Urquhart is the founder of Rise Local, a digital marketing agency. Darren has over 20 years experience in marketing, including 10 years in digital marketing. Rise Local provides accurate marketing for plumbers and hot water specialists. Rise Local has contributed to the growth of many plumbing businesses by improving their marketing. Find out more at | 47

Master manipulators:

the workplace psychopath You may have heard someone being called a ‘psychopath’ – a label often used to describe anyone unpleasant who relishes creating workplace drama. However, psychopathy is an extremely rare personality disorder that requires formal diagnosis from a specialist. In this article, Angela Ayling looks at how a psychopath operates within a workplace environment and the risks they pose to your business. Coasting effortlessly into their new job, the workplace psychopath is charming, charismatic, adaptable and intelligent but underneath the mask they are deadly. They are dormant at this settling in point but they are on a mission. On the outside they look as normal as anyone else, in fact a good catch you might think. Psychopathy is a rare personality disorder found throughout all levels of society and to varying degrees. At its worst and most shocking we see serial killers like Ivan Milat but most psychopaths do not become serial killers, instead they are walking amongst us; going to work with us and wreaking havoc in the workplace, family and social environments. Psychopaths are often amusing, witty and full of stories that portray themselves favourably. If you have parachuted out of a plane well, so have they and more times than you! Psychopaths are incredibly conceited with an inflated perception of their self-worth, importance and entitlement. They see themselves as superior to others and the centre of all action. They are an expert chameleon, changing their shape and history into whatever scenario suits at the time. They have good communications skills and move superficially in and around social situations with ease. However, the skills, experiences and histories that they glean from others are then added to their own personal arsenal for future interactions. Psychopaths lack depth and range in emotions but can act them out to a degree when required. They have learnt what responses are appropriate by watching and mimicking others. In essence they are copying and pasting emotions to suit the circumstance but they don’t really feel them.

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In the workplace the psychopath is masterful at manipulating relationships, befriending those they need and disposing of those they don’t. They ride on the backs of others often taking recognition for good work which ultimately assists in their rise through the business. In essence they actually produce very little and are more parasitic than productive. Psychopaths are also pathological liars however are not flustered when caught out lying they just lie again to suit and they are expert at it. Living on the edge is where the psychopath feels most comfortable. For the workplace this can often result in extreme risk taking at the expense of others and the business overall. Psychopaths are very easily bored and require constant stimulation they also lack the ability to concentrate for prolonged periods of time on any one task or set long term goals. Psychopaths don’t spend much time contemplating consequences of their actions – they just usually happen and are geared at achieving immediate satisfaction or pleasure and at the expense of others and the business. Psychopaths do not take any responsibility for their actions and are full of hollow promises and commitments to do the right thing but never follow through – it’s just another lie. Additionally, psychopaths have poor behaviour controls and are prone to aggressive outbursts if they feel affronted or threatened. These outbursts are most often short lived and leave those around them wondering what just happened. But what really separates a psychopath from a normal person is that psychopaths do not feel remorse or guilt for their actions regardless of the damage they may do to others, instead they are easily able to rationalise their behaviours or blame others. Psychopaths simply don’t

have the capacity to experience empathy and they don’t have a conscience and this is what makes them particularly dangerous. They’re incapable of understanding the mental and emotional needs of others and those that they do form bonds with are not interpersonal but rather possession based, this extends to family including children. People are nothing more than objects to the psychopath and are used and discarded at will. Psychopaths cannot be changed or rehabilitated – they are simply hard wired differently. One of the most preeminent experts in the field of workplace psychopathy is Professor Robert Hare who has worked in this field for several decades and with his colleagues developed what is known as the Psychopathy Checklist-Revised (PCL-R) which is a tool used by trained professionals in the assessment of psychopathy and the degree of it. The PCL-R assesses the following psychopathic characteristics on a scale of 0 – 2, with the maximum score being 40 with 30 and above equalling a diagnosis of psychopathy. 1 glib and superficial charm 2 grandiose (exaggeratedly high) estimation of self 3 need for stimulation 4 pathological lying 5 cunning and manipulativeness 6 lack of remorse or guilt 7 shallow affect (superficial emotional responsiveness) 8 callousness and lack of empathy 9 parasitic lifestyle 10 poor behavioural controls 11 sexual promiscuity 12 early behaviour problems 13 lack of realistic long-term goals 14 impulsivity 15 irresponsibility 16 failure to accept responsibility for own actions 17 many short-term marital relationships 18 juvenile delinquency 19 revocation of conditional release (probation) 20 criminal versatility

It is important to understand that labelling a person as psychopathic can be extremely damaging to the individual and most often incorrect. It is a diagnosis that only a professional in the field can make using the PCL-R assessment tool. Psychopathy is rare with estimates in the range of 1-2% of the Australian adult population that exhibit psychopathic traits and to varying degrees.

So what is the goal of a workplace psychopath? Quite simply, the goal of the workplace psychopath is to take control. To manage upwards and downwards to their benefit and at the expense of all others until they have ultimate power. For the workplace psychopath it’s a game of planning, manoeuvring and manipulating to get the end result. The psychopath is not a team player and is not there to benefit the company’s objectives, they are there to benefit themselves at the exclusion of everything else and everyone else. A very interesting read on the topic is the book Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work by Paul Babiak and Professor Robert Hare. Detailed in the book is a five phase explanation of how the workplace psychopath operates in order to gain the ultimate prize of power and control. 1 Entry: psychopaths use their charm and generally very good social and communication skills to enter the organization. They are docile at this stage, thus making them difficult to identify. 2 Assessment: the psychopath will begin to get the lay of the land, start to dissect the relationships and dynamics, and consider how they can be used to their advantage. They will categorize their co-workers as pawn or a patron. A pawn can be easily manipulated and pushed around, who has a small amount of influence. A patron has power in the organization that the psychopath will use to protect against any confrontation.

Their performance on the job is erratic, with frequent absences, misuse of company resources, violations of company policy, and general untrustworthiness. They do not honour formal or implied commitments to people, organizations, or principles. Professor Robert Hare – This Charming Psychopath – How to spot social predators before they attack. 1994

3 Manipulation: the psychopath will start to put their plans for the pawns and the patrons into play, and begin to manipulate information about themselves and others—positioning themselves to be in a good light and others in a negative light. 4 Confrontation: the psychopath continues on their path of manipulation and misinformation, disposing of the pawns and using the patrons to get a step up. 5 Ascension: patrons will now also be discarded as the psychopath takes over position of power. The outcomes of psychopathic behaviour in the workplace can be devastating to individuals and the business. For individuals the consequences can range from depression, anxiety, family/relationship breakdowns to suicide. For the business high staff turnover, low morale, increased absenteeism, reputation damage, litigation and financial loss. Remember – the psychopath is there to advance their interests not yours.

So how do you get rid of a workplace psychopath? It’s certainly not easy and prevention is the best cure here. On the upside there are workplace psychopath busters (qualified professionals) who provide businesses with support and strategy to exit a workplace psychopath. Robust auditing of workplace materials, stock and resource usage can also be valuable as psychopaths have an inclination to steal and or misuse property. Thorough pre-employment checks are necessary where referees are clearly checked and communicated with. Remember psychopaths are deceitful and lie with ease. Resumes that contain fanciful / sporadic and / or short bursts of employment with numerous employers should raise serious alarm bells. There are other pre-employment strategies that can be implemented including stringent interviewing questions against claims made in resume, checking social media presence and pre-employment questionnaires. The best defence is to be informed and know what you’re looking for when identifying potential psychopathic traits. Workplaces that do believe that they may have a psychopathic employee should seek expert external help. Remember psychopathy is very rare and requires formal diagnosis by a specialist. While some employees may exhibit one or more psychopathic traits that does not automatically make them a workplace psychopath. | 49

The importance of

personal accident and illness insurance We all hear stories of incidents happening in the workplace and at home, from slipping on tiles, to falling off ladders. While you can implement safe work practices, occasionally these incidents are unavoidable, and can result in serious injury. As a sole trader, have you thought about how a broken leg or serious illness could affect your personal finances, and ultimately your livelihood? These events may not be limited to the physical injury or sickness itself, there can often be financial consequences. It may be worthwhile for you to consider arranging a personal accident and sickness policy, to seek to minimise the financial burden that can be caused from long term absence from work. This type of policy can respond as a specified weekly benefit providing financial compensation for a percentage of your former earnings. The insurance can provide the option of either a 52 or 104 week benefit period, in the event of an accident or sickness covered by the policy (excluding pre-existing conditions).

Case study: Jeremy, a sole trader operating in the plumbing industry, twisted his knee whilst completing a job. The injury was severe, and required surgery. Jeremy was entirely and continuously unable to attend work for a total of 10 weeks following the accident. After the 14 day waiting period, Jeremy was able to claim 85% of his pre-disability earnings (as calculated by the insurer in accordance with the policy) for the remaining eight weeks he was off work.

Marsh Advantage Insurance Pty Ltd (ABN 31 087 358 303, AFSL 238 369) aarrange the insurance and is not the insurer. The personal accident and illness policy is underwritten by certain underwriters at Lloyd’s (the Underwriters) and arranged through AFA Pty Ltd (ABN 83 067 084 333, AFSL 247122) who has been given a binding authority to issue, vary and cancel this insurance on behalf of the Underwriters. The Master Plumbers and Mechanical Services Association of Australia receive a financial benefit when a policy is arranged by Marsh Advantage Insurance, enabling it to continue to provide further services to the plumbing industry. The case study contained herein is for illustrative purposes only and should not be relied upon as governing any specific facts or circumstances. All policy terms, conditions, limits and exclusions are subject to individual underwriting review and are subject to change. Marsh Advantage Insurance cannot provide any assurance that insurance can be obtained for any particular client or for any particular risk. This article contains general information only and does not take into account your individual objectives, financial situation or needs. For full details of the terms, conditions exclusions and limitations of insurance cover and before decided whether a policy suits your needs please refer to the specific Product Disclosure Statement which is available from Marsh Advantage Insurance Pty Ltd.

To find out more about obtaining business insurance, call Marsh today: Marsh Pty Ltd trading as Master Plumbers Insurance Brokers (Aust) can arrange insurance for all of the aforementioned risks, and a number of other products designed to cover you and your business, including:

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• • • • • •

Income Protection Insurance Motor Vehicle Insurance Business Insurance Machinery Insurance Household Insurance Tools Insurance

Please contact a Marsh representative to discuss your individual needs: Call 1300 300 511 Email Visit

IS IT TIME TO RENEW YOUR PLUMBING LICENCE? Contact Marsh Advantage Insurance for a competitive quote and join the 4000 plumbers across Victoria already with us. We can arrange public liability insurance starting from $535*, and email your certificate of currency directly to the VBA. To get a quote, call 1300 300 511 or visit *Premium includes statutory charges and broker fee and is based on two licensed plumbers on domestic plumbing work with turnover less than $100,000 per year with nil previous claims. Acceptance of cover is subject to underwriter guidelines. Master Plumbers Insurance Brokers (Aust) (MPIB) is a trading name of Marsh Advantage Insurance. The MPIB brand name are owned by the Master Plumbers and Mechanical Services Association of Australia (MPMSAA) and used under license by Marsh Advantage Insurance. Marsh Advantage Insurance Pty Ltd (ABN 31 081 358 303, AFSL No. 238 369) arranges this insurance and is not the insurer. MPMSAA receives a financial benefit when a policy is arranged by us, enabling it to continue to provide further services to the plumbing industry. Public liability insurance is underwritten by Vero Insurance Limited (ABN 48 005 297 807 AFSL 230 859). This page contains general information and does not take into account your individual objectives, financial situation or needs. For full details of the terms, conditions and limitations of the covers, refer to the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) which is available from Marsh Advantage Insurance.

Keeping your pipes

healthy. It’s all a matter of the right products, investment and balance says John Fennell, CEO of the International Copper Association Australia. A healthy plumbing system has to consider everything from design, installation, and commissioning to the operation of the system for the entirety of its service life. Plumbing systems that are poorly designed, or where the systems operation has changed over time, can lead to poor quality water. One of the greatest threats to the quality and longevity of a plumbing system is stagnant water. Allowing stagnant water to develop can generate biofilms in the pipes, potentially allowing the growth of pathogens which are harmful to people. Uncirculated water can accumulate toxins from chemical absorbed through plastic pipes or heavy metals being leached from metallic pipes over time. The Plumbing Code of Australia and Australian Standard AS /NZS 3500 set out requirements and guidelines to ensure that these problems do not arise. For other useful design ideas and methods, download the amended Edition of the Hydraulic Services Design Guide from

Design and installation The correct design of a plumbing system is key to healthy, high quality performance. During design, dead leg piping should be avoided or restricted to being as short in length as possible. A flushing facility (tap) should be provided where there is low draw-off and fixtures that are seldom used should be placed on flow lines or close to a regularly used service. Cross-connections of the drinking water supply to other water supplies, such as rainwater or recycled water, is another potential contamination. All water supply systems must be designed and installed so as to prevent contaminants from entering the drinking water supply.

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Where there is a possibility of crossconnection, protection is achieved by the installation of backflow prevention devices and air gaps between supply pipework and storage systems. Identification and marking of nonpotable water supplies and colour coding of pipework is another way of reducing the chances of contamination. Section 4 of Australian/New Zealand Standard AS/ NZS 3500.1 deals with this aspect and must be strictly adhered to. Correct pipe sizing during design is also crucial. There needs to be sufficient water for all the intended uses, including peak demand, and if the pipe size is too small the water velocity and friction losses will be too great, potentially causing erosion and wearing of the pipes. If the pipes are excessively oversized however, there will be insufficient flow to minimise biofilm build up and settling of silt.

Commissioning and operation During commissioning all systems shall be thoroughly flushed out as soon as possible after installation to remove foreign matter and should continue until the water runs completely clear. The system can then be pressure tested in accordance with the relevant regulation. Water from reticulated systems (municipal water supply) is usually satisfactory for flushing and testing purposes. Where non-disinfected water is to be used for flushing and testing, water shall be disinfected. A procedure for disinfecting water is outlined in AS 4809 and AS/NZS 3500.1. If more than 8 weeks between installation and full system use is unavoidable: the system shall be kept completely full and clean water shall be flushed frequently (every 2 weeks) from each fixture until the system is used; OR the system shall be drained completely and dried out by blowing air through the system, then, if practicable, the piping shall be sealed to prevent intrusion of water and foreign matter. When the system is connected to the permanent water supply with all taps and valves installed, all draw-off points should be opened until clear water exits the system. This will assist in the development of the protective internal film within the pipe work and draw fresh disinfected water into the system. In large installations, the flushing should be performed in sections. Multi-storey buildings should be flushed by commencing on the uppermost floor and working down storey by storey.

Water services used to supply drinking water shall be protected against contamination during installation, commissioning and repairs. If any water supply service is exposed to foreign substances or contaminated supply, the service shall be flushed, chlorinated and tested before being placed in service. After the water system is in operation, special care needs to be given when modification, change in usage patterns or where extensions are added to the systems. The entire systems needs to be checked so that all requirements of the Standards and Plumbing Code of Australia are continually being met.

How can copper tube help? Copper tubing has been the primary material for Australian and New Zealand plumbing for over 50 years. Design information, including the governing standards, are based around copper and copper pipe sizes. Taking the extra care and consideration when designing, installing, commissioning and operating a plumbing system will improve the quality, performance and life of the system. Of the utmost importance is the profound effect these steps can have on the quality of water being conveyed in a system.

What are biofilms? Biofilms are formed when bacteria adhere to a solid surface and enclose themselves in a sticky polysaccharide (slime). Biofilms are ubiquitous (ever-present) in the environment. They are formed inside of all of our water pipes, toilets, and drains, and, in fact, everywhere where there is persistent water. Biofilms on other surfaces can be scrubbed away, or can be disrupted using very hot water (steam is best) and concentrated oxidizing agents. However, they will return quickly unless the water source is removed. Hence, there are always biofilms present where, by definition, water is always present (e.g., in the ocean, rivers, our mouths, and our water pipes). It is important to remember when people express concern about biofilms that every drop of water that we drink has been in constant contact with a biofilm. Biofilms can also become colonized with organisms that may be dangerous to some people. One such

pathogen that colonizes biofilms is Legionella pneumophila and most isolated cases result from exposure in homes, often from showering in water that passes across Legionellacolonized biofilms. In this case, the best control is to keep hot water temperatures high (contrary to energy saving recommendations). To avoid the risk of scalding, mixing of hot and cold water should be done directly at the tap. While most people do not need to be concerned about Legionnaires’ disease, people with immune system impairment (and this includes heavy smokers) should be aware of this risk. This is why hospitals and nursing homes are of special concern. Using municipal water supply containing a disinfectant helps minimise the formation of biofilms and copper is a natural disinfectant. Fortunately Legionella cannot survive when in direct contact with copper, however biofilms will continue to increase in all other pipework systems unless treated or removed.

calling all plumbers, Sprinkler fitters, fire protection professionals, apprentices and Businesses. Do you or someone you know deserve to be awarded for your contribution to our Industry? Find out more at Join MC Jane Bunn and a host of entertainers and support your friends and colleagues as they are recognised by the industry for their outstanding achievements and contribution.

Saturday, 15 October 2016 Melbourne Room Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre B r i n g i n g t h e p lu m B i n g a n d f i re p rOte c t i O n i n d u S t r i e S tO g e t h e r | 53

Discrimination Everyone in the workplace and work – related environments, irrespective of their position / role, deserves to be treated with dignity and respect.

Dignity and respect is achieved when all workplace and work – related behaviour is appropriate and lawful. Inappropriate and / or unlawful behaviour is unacceptable. Individuals (and their employers and / or organisations to which they belong) are accountable for their actions and behaviour at work and in work – related situations, as well as when engaging with persons known to them through work or outside of work.

It is the responsibility of every individual to ensure that they do not directly / indirectly / inadvertently allow, permit, aid, encourage, reward, foster, incite or instruct any form of inappropriate or unlawful behaviour. Discrimination is treating, or proposing to treat, someone unfavourably because of a personal characteristic protected by the law. The Equal Opportunity Act 2010 – Victoria’s anti-discrimination law – protects people from discrimination and harassment in areas of public life such as workplaces, schools, clubs, shops or places that provide services.

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mastering workplace relations

You can be discriminated against directly or indirectly. In Victoria it is against the law for someone to discriminate against you because of a personal characteristic that you have, or someone assumes that you have. In Victoria, the following are the personal attributes and characteristics protected by anti – discrimination laws: • race including skin colour, nationality, descent, ethnicity, country of citizenship, ethno – religious or national origin (includes speech with accents); • sex; • pregnancy (includes potential pregnancy); • carer’s responsibilities; • family responsibilities; • parental responsibilities (includes being childless); • breastfeeding; • industrial activity or trade union membership (or non membership); • religious belief, affiliation, conviction or activity; • marital status, domestic status or relationship status; • sexual orientation (includes heterosexuality, homosexuality, bisexuality or assumed sexual orientation); • gender identity, gender history, transgender or intersex; • age (includes compulsory retirement); • political belief, opinion, affiliation, conviction or activity;

Harvey and Evertop Investments Pty Ltd and Anor [2016] WASAT 10 (18 February 2016) A recent decision of the State Administrative Tribunal of Western Australia (Tribunal) has recently considered the question of whether the employer of three (3) employees had unlawfully discriminated against them on the basis of family status. In July 2014, three (3) casual employees of the Jim Kidd Sports Stores, namely, Laura Harvey, Emma Bree Harvey and Abbey Rose Harvey, who were the wife and daughters respectively of Mr Neil Harvey, the operations manager of the stores, who was in a dispute with the company, were transferred from stores where they worked to the company’s warehouse. Each of the three (3) casual employees claimed that the action taken against them was discriminatory and a breach of the Equal Opportunity Act 1984 (WA) and made complaints to the Equal Opportunity Commissioner who referred the matter to the Tribunal. Having heard all of the evidence, the Tribunal found that it was not satisfied to the standard required that either Laura Harvey, Emma Bree Harvey or Abbey Rose Harvey had been unlawfully discriminated against and that other employees in similar circumstances but who were not related to Mr Neil Harvey would have been treated in a similar fashion and the three (3) applications were dismissed.

In the decision, the Tribunal found that: • James Kidd (the owner of the company that owned and operated the Jim Kidd Sports Stores) considered the applicants represented a commercial risk to the business; • the Tribunal was required to determine whether James Kidd treated the three (3) applicants differently by reason of their being Mr Harvey’s wife and children, than he would have treated another person in similar circumstances; • when James Kidd wishes to keep an eye on, or observe an employee who he may have lost trust in or regarded them as a commercial risk, he was likely to transfer them to the warehouse (regardless of who they were); • in all the circumstances, based on the evidence before it, the Tribunal was not satisfied (to the standard required) that the first and second respondents unlawfully discriminated against the applicants as claimed, but rather found that the respondents, rightly or wrongly, were likely to have treated a comparator in similar circumstances such as the one the Tribunal has identified earlier in exactly the same way. The Tribunal dismissed each of the three (3) applications.

• expunged homosexual conviction; • irrelevant criminal record; • irrelevant medical record; • disability and impairment that is current, past or imputed (includes physical / sensory / intellectual disability, work related injury, medical conditions, mental / psychological / learning disabilities and disease);

Summary: Lessons to be learned Whilst the decision did not find in favour of the three (3) applicants and dismissed their application, the decision demonstrates the need to ensure that an employer treats an employee (whoever that employee may be) the same way as they would any and all other employees of the

company. Should an employer treat an employee differently, for whatever reason, then the employer may well be determined to have discriminated against the employee on the basis of a protected attribute and / or characteristic.

• physical features; • employment activity; and • association with a person who has one or more of the attributes for which discrimination is prohibited.

If you have any questions about this article, or about your obligations under the various pieces of discrimination legislation, please contact Phil Eberhard, Senior Workplace Relations Adviser, Master Plumbers, on 03 9321 0720, 0425 790 722 or

Costly quotes Eve John looks at some of the costly mistakes you might be making when quoting jobs.

Mistake #1:

Looking after the marketing and sales side of things isn’t something many small business owners relish, but they are an absolutely vital part of running a business. Preparing quotes and estimates, securing the sale and doing the work are all vital aspects of your business and they are also measurable activities that you can put a dollar figure on. And I know that businesses like yours are wasting time and money on quotes that you are not winning. It’s frustrating, time consuming and costs your business in lost time and potential revenue. Quoting on prospective jobs is one of the most expensive (in both time and resources) yet important parts of any trade business. But, converting those quotes into sales and jobs can be hard… until now. I am going to reveal to you the three biggest mistakes most tradies make when giving out quotes and how to avoid them, so you can make more money. Understanding these mistakes will help you to overcome some of the biggest barriers when it comes to converting your quotes into sales. I’ll also show you some quick solutions that are easy to implement and can have a huge impact on your business.

Failure to follow up

Not knowing who the decisionmakers are and how they buy

I bet it won’t surprise you to discover that lack of follow-up is the biggest issue that most trade businesses have.

Do you know who truly makes the buying decisions?

Did you know that 50% of your competitors have given up on the sale after just the first contact with the customer? From there 65% will give up after a second contact with the customer and astonishingly, 89.8% of them have given up after only the fourth contact with the customer! Yes, nearly 90% of your competitors have given up on a customer after four contacts. So how can you avoid being one of these statistics? There are several methods that you can use to have more contact with your customers, including automated emails, postcards, mailed letters, newsletters, SMS, etc. But the simplest method that my clients use is sending a text message when you drop off or email through your quotes. Here is the exact one we have success with: ‘Hey Bob, great to chat with you this week. Just wanted to let you know I dropped off / emailed through your quote today. If it is okay with you, I will give you a call in three days, in the meantime you can get in touch if you have any questions. I look forward to chatting with you. Enjoy your day. Eve.’ The purpose behind this type of follow up is: 1 To look out for the quote you’ve given them information. It registers in their mind and they will either check their letter box or their email 2 Allowed you to make another contact with them and followed up, starting to build up a level of trust 3 Your number is on their phones already and they won’t have to go out and look for it.

56 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | June 2016

Mistake #2:

Women make 80% of the buying decision in Australia. You may deal with a man, but 80% of the time the decision is made by the woman. And this makes sense, particularly when doing domestic work, often it is the women that is home whilst the tradesman is there. Women buy very differently to men. Women don’t just compare your company to your competitors, they compare it to their favourite best-in-class retailers and ecommerce sites. So, you need to provide them with a first class experience from the very start. And one of the best ways for trade business to do this is by providing them with the information and knowledge they need to make the right decision. This is easily done by using a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) which allows potential questions to be addressed prior to them having to make a decision. Not only do you get to answer questions that potential customers may have, you also have a great opportunity to sell yourself. And the best part is, it saves you time on all of the follow up phone calls where everyone seems to ask the same questions! All you really need to do is to keep a record of the types of question (for as little as two or three weeks) when you’re talking to each new customer, of the types of questions that they ask you and the responses to each.

Here is a fill-in-the-blanks template I give my clients:

Mistake #3: Failure to build trust with your customers Examples of FAQs include: What is your guarantee? How do I know this is right for me? How long will this take? What do I need to do to prepare? FAQs can also include anything specific about your products or services and qualifications. Once you have the questions and you know what your responses are, you can then have them typed out. Or if you wanted to be able to use them in another format or because some people prefer to talk than write, you can make each of them into a short video that you can use on your website and social media. Then you can simply create a FAQ sheet that you can either print out and give to clients or send through with your emails, you can also add them to your website.

PRO TIP: Make sure at the end of your FAQ’s you have a call action, something that tells them what to do next like ‘Don’t see your question here? Call us on 1234 now and we can answer it for you.’

Trust is a huge factor in people’s buying decisions, but how can you build it relatively quickly? It’s easy for anyone to say how great and trustworthy he or she is. But it’s much more impressive when someone else can say these things about you. Customer testimonials are a great way to gain your customer’s confidence because it’s proof of your results. Testimonials build trust. Whether your customers are raving about what your product has done for them or about the great service you gave, they’re telling your potential customers first and foremost that they had a positive experience. Testimonials don’t come across as ‘salesy’ and because they’re not written in your voice they stand out in your marketing as candid and unbiased accounts of how well your service and products works. Testimonials overcome scepticism. A good testimonial has the power to convince even your “tough sell” customers that your product or service really made a difference in your customer’s life and can help them too. So, how do you collect the testimonials you need and keep them coming as you grow your business? You need to ask! But most tradies would rather pull out their nose hairs with tweezers than ask for a testimonial, it is painful and often embarrassing. A fill in the blanks form is really useful for those customers that you have been dealing with over email a lot or that you are working on various projects for.

the rked on John wo e v E e r ou Befo t were y as <wha w I t, c je pro ned/ /concer worried ______ , about> _ d te a ed, tr s fru as finish e work w th r e ft a / t bu le to <see tantly ab I was ins _______ , erience> p x e t has l/ e fe re is wha esult, he r a s I a w d o an ifics, h list spec < d e g n a ch chen, t my kit ices feel abou ter serv a m, hot w o o r tely th lu a b ld abso ___ I wou _ _ _ _ use > a tc c e John be end Eve m m o c . e _ r _______ ________ ________ And an obvious word of caution, never make up testimonials from clients that don’t exist! Similarly, getting friends and family to provide them will inevitably be found out – and there goes the trust you have worked so hard to gain. The techniques I have talked about are just a fraction of the dozens I use each and every day to grow my clients’ businesses. Take sometime this week to implement these three tips into your business. You will be amazed at the changes to your business and your profits. Good luck!

Eve John is a multi-awarded business owner, #1 bestselling author and marketing strategist specialising in trade and construction. She is the creator of the Fully Booked Tradies System and has been called Australia’s leading tradie marketer with her second book HI VIZ BIZ hitting #1 on the best sellers list on Amazon Australia. For more sales and marketing tips to increase you profits or to get a copy of her 10 Word Email or SMS That Converts Old Leads Into New Clients go to | 57

58 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | June 2016

product news Take control of quoting

Septic Tanks Specialists

When a potential client asks you for a quote for your plumbing services, you already know they’re interested in doing business with you. You’ve attracted their interest through your marketing efforts – but that’s only half of the endeavour. The quote you provide them will determine whether or not you win their business for this job, and most likely their business for plumbing services in future as well. So, how can you ensure you provide a quote that makes a great first impression and closes the deal quickly?

Reliability is key in the effluent business. Septic tank pumps operate out of sight and out of mind for most customers. Submerged in an aggressive environment, these pumps are crucial in keeping basic sewage systems working.Aussie Pumps supply Tsurumi UTZ series submersibles which are ideal for septic tank installations and pump replacements.

Quoting with simPRO Software For the installation or maintenance quote, simPRO job management software offers you visibility, flexibility and control. simPRO Service enables you to seamlessly import plumbing supplier catalogues with your unique buy price into your system – and view all of your costs and labour types in one place. With all of your labour rates and supplier price lists at your fingertips, you can quickly and easily generate an accurate and competitive quote based on your real costs.

Special offer to Master Plumbers’ members As a Master Plumbers member, you’ll receive one simPRO Service office licence and one simPRO Connect field licence free for the lifetime of your membership*, saving you a total of $1176 per year! *Terms and conditions apply. See associations/members-master-plumbers for details.

“Giving customers a reliable product is vital when handling effluent,” said Kurt Chapman from Aussie Pumps. “Many septic systems installed use cheap pumps just to meet a cost point. We recommend they are replaced with Tsurumi UTZ pumps because of their quality and suitability. Their cast iron body outlasts rolled 304 stainless steel equivalents, they are easy to service and suit the aggressive ph levels found in the tanks,” he said. Designed specifically for effluent and sewage applications, the pump is fitted with a unique vortex style impeller that passes compressible solids of up to 35mm in diameter. The maximum flow available from the range is 440 lpm while the maximum lift, or vertical head is 12.5m. The pumps are powered by single phase, capacitor start, electric motors in the range of 0.4kW to 0.75kW. All pumps are supplied with a heavy duty 10 metre submersible cable. “These pumps have a capacitor and wiring system that can be easily serviced with no need for a plug license or electrical ticket,” said Chapman. “They aren’t the cheapest on the market, but the quality makes them the best value. They are even backed up with a three year warranty,” he said The automatic pumps feature a simple float control system that prevents dry running, reduces power consumption and extends operating life. To find out more visit or call 02 8865 3500 The Tsurumi UTZ automatic submersible pump is specifically designed for septic tanks and built for endurance and reliability.

Viega’s Smart ConnectFeature: Guaranteed leak detection When it comes to testing for inadvertently unpressed connections for water and compressed air systems, Viega’s unique, patented Smart ConnectFeature is the only guaranteed method in the industry to provide a failsafe solution. Viega is the first and only manufacturer to incorporate the safety feature on multiple pipe joining systems – both copper and stainless steel. All Viega press fittings offer the unique Smart ConnectFeature. Put simply, the feature means that unpressed fittings automatically leak during the pressure test. “Normally when systems are tested, the pressure applied is static, so there are no pressure surges which occur during normal system operation when taps are turned on and off etc. In addition, there is usually a pressure differential between floors – e.g. a five-storey apartment may have a 130kPa pressure difference between the top and bottom floor,” says Robert Hardgrove, technical manager/ strategic projects with Viega Australia. “It means that inadvertently unpressed fittings may not be readily identified. “However, with Viega press fittings, such mishaps are prevented. In fact, Viega created the Smart Connect-Feature to make sure these issues don’t occur. This safety feature has been tried and tested millions of times – and it guarantees that any inadvertently unpressed connectors become visible.” If the connection has a leak, a dry leakage test will show a visible pressure decrease over the entire pressure range from 2.2 kPa to 300 kPa. And if the leakage test is carried out with water, this visibly escapes from the unpressed fittings in the pressure range of 100 kPa to 650 kPa. The system allows for a central leakage test of the entire system rather than testing of individual sections. To find out more visit | 59

product news Smart Fire Protection from Bostik As a global brand, Bostik continues its dedication to creating innovative and intelligent solutions to the problems that face modern living. The organisation is driven by a core mission to manufacture products that make our world safer, more flexible, efficient and responsive to the challenges we face. Bostik’s new range of Fire Rated Expanda Foams adds to the company’s line-up of already reputable Fire Rated building products (Fireban One and Firecaulk). Available in a gun grade or manually dispensed aerosol, Bostik Fire Rated Expanda Foam’s boast excellent fire retardant and acoustic properties. Ideal for all manner of cavity filling and sealing applications, the new range carries with it Bostik’s reputation for high quality, premium adhesives and sealants.

Cut and Clean Concrete Cutting Cut and Clean Concrete Cutting is a specialist provider of concrete and asphalt cutting services. We have been working in the civil industry for over 25 years and provide a 24/7 service. Cut and Clean predominantly works in the civil industry covering all aspects of underground pipe laying including but not limited to communications, water, gas and power. Cut and Clean Concrete Cutting introduced a world first integrated vacuum recycling system. This patented system proved to be so successful that today our fleet of seven trucks are all fitted with integrated vacuum recycling units.

Services include: • Concrete/ Asphalt Sawing to depths up to 525mm. • Slurry Vacuuming and Recycling • Hand sawing to depths up to 150mm. • Core holes up to any size • Silence blades (up to 375mm deep) • Hydraulic Sawing For further information contact 03 94581434,, or visit

Our vehicles arrive on site ready to commence work; water, integrated vacuum system and saws are carried on all units.

Features and Benefits: • Professional grade • Fire retardant for up to 4 hours (tested to AS1530.4-2005) • Very high yield (up to 30L) • Low post expansion • Multi-purpose – seals, fills cavities, minimises sound and eliminates draughts. • Excellent adhesion to most surfaces • Can be applied at any angle • CFC free propellant (harmless to ozone layer) • Range includes Expanda Gun & Foam Cleaner for removing excess foam • Precision application and dosage with new Expanda Designer Gun For more information on Fire Rated Expanda Foam or other Bostik products, visit

Unitray – Hot water unit installation made easy Unitray, a new Hot Water Unit safe tray system providing an assembly an time of one minute whilst exceeding the requirements of AS3500 – National Plumbing Code. The new Unitray system for hot water units incorporates the “Tee, Tundish and Tundish Cap” which allows for easy connection of pressure relief drains into the integrated ports above the tundish. The tray is manufactured from HDPE has a 50mm screwed thread outlet, for the connection of the tee (supplied) All components are manufactured from HDPE which allows for either screwed, HDPE fusion welded or fernco type connection.

Features include: • Integrated elevating (pizza) base eliminating the need for a BAYTAK base • 6 optional elevating posts for where an elevating stand is required offering a far cheaper over the counter purchase • Multiple locating slots in the tray to position posts to make connection to a pre-existing waste below the tray possible • Circular design making a more versatile fit compared to existing square trays • Available to suit hot water units from 25 to 315 litre capacity • Manufactured from non-conductive, UV resistant and rust proof material Available from all major plumbing wholesalers within Australia – just ask for Unitray or visit

60 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | June 2016


Cut and Clean Concrete Cutting is a specialist provider of concrete and asphalt cutting services. We have been working in the civil industry for over 25 years and provide a 24/7 service. - Concrete/ Asphalt Flat sawing to depths up to 525 mm. - Slurry Vacuuming and Recycling - Hand sawing to depths up to 150 mm. - Core holes up to any size - Silence blades (up to 375 mm deep) - Hydraulic Sawing

PHONE: (03) 9458 1434 MOBILE: 0412 311 963 WEBSITE: EMAIL: | 61

product news Bosch Hydronic Boiler range – Wave Controller In 2016 Bosch Hot Water and Heating will be launching an innovative new smart controller that is expected to become a must have accessory for the Bosch Hydronic Boiler range. The CT100 smart control allows the owner of a Bosch boiler to control their hydronic heating system via a smart phone and free Bosch App, from anywhere in the world.

Precision products from RIDGID The RIDGID KJ-5000 portable water jetter gives you 5075 psi actual working pressure to handle commercial and industrial pipe clearing applications. This jetter propels a highly flexible and lightweight thermoplastic hose through 50mm to 250mm lines – blasting through sludge, soap, grease, and sediment blockages. As you pull the hose back, it power scrubs the line flushing debris away and restoring drain lines to their full, free-flowing capacity – all without the use of harmful chemicals.

The Bosch group is working across many business fields to be a leader in the area of connectivity and networked appliances. In this new age of the “Internet of things”, the Bosch catch phrase Invented for life is being realised by connected Bosch appliances that enable higher levels of energy efficiency, comfort, and sustainability.

2” to 10” (50 to 250 mm) Drain Lines

The introduction of the CT100 in Australia is the latest example of this philosophy. The controller is connected to the home router, then pared to the owner’s smart phone. The CT100 can function as a conventional touch screen controller, or can be remotely operated via the app and smart phone.

• Honda GX690 electric start petrol V-twin engine with 6 vibration protection mounts and an hour meter

The CT100 has the ability to communicate with the boiler to take advantage of control features such as weather and load compensation. This means the boiler can modulate its performance to ensure the optimum balance of energy efficiency and comfort is achieved.

• 4 nozzles in convenient carry box

The app also allows the user to see a chart of their boiler operation and energy consumption, allowing the easy identification of additional opportunities for potential energy savings With an expected release to the Australian market in 2016, this controller is sure to revolutionise hydronic heating in the home.

Features: • Powerful 5075 psi actual pump working pressure with a water flow rate of 23 litres per min. • Italian quality high pressure Triplex piston plunger pump, rubber foot mounted

• 60m of quality lightweight 3/8” thermoplastic hose • 60m remote reel with quality 1/4” hose • Pressure washer lance • Easy read pressure gauge • 36L stainless steel water supply tank • Low level water cut out • Solid frame construction & powder coat finish with side guard protection • 20L stainless steel fuel tank with level gauge & fuel tap • Easy reach emergency stop button • Oversized puncture proof wheels • Tie down/top eyelets • Bulletproof frame construction • Battery isolator switch • Hand wash facility • Ute/trailer mounting provision • Optional Flat bed mounting kit • Optional 15m 3/16” whip hose • Optional foot valve

62 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | June 2016

The Ridge Tool Company is a world leading manufacturer of professional quality pipe and tube working tools serving the plumbing, mechanical, construction, HVAC, location, electrical and facility maintenance industries. The RIDGID® trademark is recognized by professional tradespersons and engineers for uncompromising product quality, performance, durability and service. To find out more contact RIDGID on 1800 743 443 or | 63

product news Veil of Intelligence Raises Toilet to New Level of Luxury

Introducing the NEW and compact Ute mount water jetter

Next generation water-heating technology is here

The ‘unveiling’ of KOHLER’S Veil smart toilet takes hygiene and comfort to a new level in terms of luxury and personalised convenience.

Sewerquip Pty Ltd have recognised the need for a compact durable high pressure water jetting machine that can be easily mounted to plumbers utes taking up the least amount of room possible.

With the new year comes Dux Hot Water’s release of a superior range of continuous flow water heaters. Engineered and made by Noritz, Japan’s leader in continuous flow water heater technology and the new owner of Dux.

The Veil is a self-cleaning wall hung toilet with integrated advanced bidet features controlled using the OneTouch remote control. The design of the Veil deserves special mention as its balanced curves and sculpted form inject a sense of beauty into the utilitarian toilet or bathroom space. The French curve heated seat, with its gently dished shape, minimises pressure points for extra comfort while its antibacterial material enhances hygiene levels. The ultra-responsive remote control offers a suite of customised features to optimise hygiene and personal comfort – these include a choice of soft, pulsating or spiral wash with instant air infused warm water; choice of water temperature; warm air dryer with adjustable temperature control; and seat temperature adjustment. The Veil’s stainless steel spray wand automatically cleans itself with sterilised water after each use – and it automatically sanitises itself with UV light every 24 hours. The powerful, twin jet flushing system of Veil, together with its rimless bowl, ensures a cleaner flush and an all-round higher standard of hygiene within the toilet. Additional features include sensor-activated automatic seat cover with three adjustable distance settings to open and close the lid; blue LED nightlight on the face plate. The Veil has half and full flush options with a 4 star WELS rating and 3.3 litre average flush. Installation must include high hazard backflow prevention. Full installation instructions provided and after sales / installation support is available. To find out more visit

64 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | June 2016

We have designed the new SEWERJETT RAIDER that can be easily mounted to a standard tray without taking up valuable space. The new SEWERJETT RAIDER boasts a huge 24lpm/5000psi performance which has an effective cleaning range for 50-225mm pipes and comes complete with all the accessories required to effectively start cleaning drains. With twin reels mounted directly to the unit, mounting to your vehicle is a breeze without the expensive fit-out required with remote reels. The garden reel houses the 25m of 19mm water feed hose, and the high pressure reel houses the 60m of high quality jetting hose. This gives plenty of length to get to the entry point and the remote mini-reel supplied gives you another 60m of jetting hose to use from the point of entry. The package includes a nozzle box with the renowned Rootax controlled rotation root cutter and a selection of jetting heads. A 15m 1/8 Whip hose and hand lance are supplied to enable you to clean 40-50mm pipes. Simply bolt this impressive unit down to your ute, truck, trailer or van and you are ready to start professionally jetting those blocked drains! To find out more contact Troy Wiggins or call 1800 816 830.

Dux’s latest range of condensing and non-condensing water heaters boasts a minimum 6 star energy rating and 12 year heat exchanger warranty. In addition to the traditional, non-condensing range in Natural Gas and LPG, Dux is introducing the Continuous Flow condensing water heater in both 21L and 26L capacities. These higher performing, next generation models offer lower running costs and higher efficiency in a compact size and are fast becoming the products of choice in Japan, Europe and USA. So, how do they work? Essentially, the condensing range uses a secondary heat exchanger to capture around 150 degrees in heat energy. This is put to use to heat the water a second time, while lowering the output exhaust temperature, resulting in lower running costs and gas bills for homeowners. With a 6.7 star energy rating, payback under 2 years and ongoing savings for at least the 12 year warranty period, it’s easy to see why the Dux range of Condensing Systems is the future of Continuous Flow Gas Water Heaters. For further details, please contact Dux on 1300 365 115 or visit






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1800 816 830 | 65

product news Jetter Sales Surge with Tax Deadline

Another Milestone in Radial Pressing

Kincrome Plumber’s Tool Kit

The Federal Government’s 100% tax depreciation rules for small businesses means many plumbers can write off equipment costs against their tax bill. The rules apply to assets up to the value of $20,000 with no limit on the number of assets claimed.

Check out the NEW REMS Power-Press XL ACC. This is the MOST impressive new product in Radial Pressing Tools on the market to date.

The new 41-piece Plumber’s Tool Kit is now available exclusively at Tradelink.

Blake from Bourn Plumbing at Tennyson Point NSW picks up his new Cobra 4300, taking advantage of the Government’s tax depreciation rules to maximise his tax deductions for this financial year.

“We getting a huge response from plumbers looking to take advantage of the tax break before the 30th June deadline”, said Jetters Edge principal, Bill Miller. “Record low interest rates and the tax depreciation rules mean lots of plumbers are looking to upgrade their gear and maximise their tax deductions,” he said. The Jetters Edge offer a wide range of jetters from the Aussie Cobra 4300psi machine, a real workhorse, right up to the big King Cobra, a Honda twin-cylinder powered 5000 psi machine with a huge amount of grunt. The Jetters Edge, Miller’s Sydney based pressure jetting specialist operation is at the cutting edge of high pressure drain cleaning. Bill Miller worked with Australian Pump Industries, the country’s biggest manufacturer in developing machines that take the danger and the hard work out of drain cleaning. “Our machines can clean drains in as little as four minutes with plumbers telling us that the average is around ten minutes. By the time you clean up after the job you’re gone within twenty minutes,” he said. Purchasing an Aussie Cobra through The Jetters Edge is simple with finance being approved sometimes within twelve hours. Rates are cheap and provide plumbers with a real opportunity to value add their business and build profitability. To find out more visit or

66 | Australian Plumbing Industry Magazine | June 2016

You are now able to press up to Ø 110mm in just a single pass. This unit is super fast and capable of pressing stainless steel (Ø 108mm) in just 15 seconds. The Power Press XL ACC Electrohydraulic radial press with automatic circuit control produces pressing joints Ø 10-108 (110)mm. This impressive motor drives the complete assortment of REMS pressing tongs, pressing rings, pressing rings XL and other suitable makes to give you the fastest and most accurate press for all of your fittings. The press is also suitable for carbon steel, stainless steel, copper for potable water and heating installations up to Ø 108mm. Swivelling pressing tongs seat with automatic locking. High compression pressing rings XL (PR-3S) and adapter tongs Z6 XL are made in forged and specially hardened steel. Pressing contours of REMS pressing rings XL (PR-3S) are system specific and correspond to the respective pressfitting system offering perfect system conformity and safe press jointing. Available from Ancra and all good Pipetool Distributors. To find out more visit or phone 1800 426 272

The Tool Kit features a heavy duty aluminium truck box filled with quality tools from Kincrome, including a 14-piece screwdriver set, multi-grips, tin snips, tape measure and copper tube benders – everything a plumber needs to get the job done. Plus all Kincrome Tool Kits are covered by a FREE 12 Month Protection Plan. $799 inc GST Product code: 136611 To find out more visit or call 1800 PLUMBING

Propress Smart Connect-Feature

S m ar t Con ne ctFeat ur e by Viega

The fastest and most reliable way to locate any unpressed fitting!

Available from

For information call 1800 4 viega

Quality and reliability you can stake your reputation on! All Viega press fittings offer a unique safety feature – the Viega Smart Connect-Feature. Thanks to this technology, which has been tried and tested millions of times, unpressed fittings automatically leak during the pressure test. Viega press fittings with Smart Connect-Feature work with both compressed air and water. If the connection has a leak, the “dry” leakage test will show a visible pressure decrease over the entire pressure range from 2.2 kPa to 300 kPa. If the leakage test is carried out with water, this visibly escapes from the unpressed fittings in the pressure range of 100 kPa to 650 kPa. Another advantage of the Viega press connection is the cylindrical pipe insertion. This prevents damage to the sealing element during the assembly process. Make the smart decision you can stake you reputation on. Viega. A better idea!

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