Monday 11 September 2023

Uptake of third-party certification lags despite legislation boosting awareness and intention to specify

In the year after the Building Safety Act became law, awareness of the benefits of fire door third-party certification is growing, but the proportion of certified fire doors in use has dropped slightly, new research for the British Woodworking Federation (BWF) Fire Door Alliance has shown.

The survey of 1,000 people with responsibility for fire door specification, installation, and maintenance across the UK found that over half (52%) now look for third party certification - as opposed to other means - to provide proof of performance for a fire door.

This was higher than the 46% in 2022 when the same audience was surveyed.

Two thirds (66%) said they’re more likely to seek certification as a consequence of the Building Safety Act, and 92% now said that the traceability of a complete fire door assembly is important, compared to 89% in 2022.

These attitudes could indicate that new legislation aimed at increasing accountability is starting to take effect.

Despite the growing awareness of third-party certification, and greater intention to specify third-party certified fire doors evidenced by these figures, this hasn’t yet translated to higher uptake.

In fact, whereas in 2022 respondents said that 56% of the total number of fire doors they are responsible for are third-party certified, this figure, concerningly, was lower at 54% in 2023’s survey.

Helen Hewitt, Chief Executive of the BWF Fire Door Alliance, said: 

“It’s clear that new legislation is having an effect on attitudes towards traceability and accountability in fire safety, which is hugely positive to see.

“For fire doors specifically, we’re seeing a greater understanding of the benefits that third-party certification can deliver in aligning with the intention of new legislation.

“However, the findings highlighted a disconnect between greater awareness and intent, and the number of third-party certified fire doors being specified.

“This is concerning and highlights that more guidance and training support is needed to increase uptake. 

“We do anticipate that as legislation leads to more robust systems over traceability, we will see increased demand for third-party certification.

“Certification provides robust proof of performance and traceability of a fire door’s components, its manufacture and journey through the supply chain.

“As such, it is a ready-made solution for complying with new regulations.”

While the impact of legislation over attitudes and intent appears to be significant, the research also highlighted areas where further education and guidance is needed over implementing the new laws.

Some 30% of respondents were unsure or did not understand their responsibility with regards to the new legislation and pointed to the need for more support.

Despite 78% having read new fire safety documents published by the Home Office to assist the Responsible Person in fulfilling their obligations, a third (33%) said more information from the Government would improve their understanding of their responsibilities.

Not all guidance is expected to come from the government however; 39% wanted more input from employers and 55% said they needed better training support.

Helen Hewitt added: 

“The Building Safety Act is still in its relative infancy and it’s natural that there’s an adjustment period in meeting requirements.

“The onus isn’t just on organisations or individuals themselves to comply, but it also requires the government, employers and the fire and building safety industry to continue to provide education and support in navigating these major changes.

“Only by doing this can we make our buildings safer for all.”

For more information visit

About the research
The data in this report comes from a BWF Fire Door Alliance survey of 1,000 people with responsibility for fire door specification, installation and maintenance across the UK. Fieldwork was undertaken in March 2023. This has been compared with data obtained in 2022 (before the Fire Safety Act was passed as law) from the same audience, to provide a comparison over attitudes and intent one year on from legislation passing. 

Why not Sign-up to Receive these Articles by Email each Day on our newsfeed site

>> Scroll down to read more articles like this which have been published recently on this blog <<

You can also read additional current and archived articles on our dedicated magazine website

Low Cost and Free Publicity - Your company can easily benefit from some publicity like the posts above for a contribution towards our layout costs (£75 to £95 plus VAT), payable in advance or you can receive the service absolutely free of charge if you advertise (see below).

We post articles up to twice a day and never delete them - we only archive them each year so that they continue to remain visible to search engines.

To have your story published - just send us your news item, logo and image(s) and we will review the material, make any necessary changes to the wording / wordcount and then advise you when it will be published.

If you are a regular advertiser in our printed and online publications, placing series bookings for adverts or subscribing to our VIP Packages, you will qualify for a specific number of free postings on this blog while you continue to advertise with us. See our media pack for more details.

Also, if you purchase one of our Online and Print Combo packages, Featured Articles or Advertorial packages shown in our media pack, posting on this blog is included in the price.

For details and rates for all of our advertising options in print and online, download our media pack contact us or visit our website.

Door Industry Journal is a trading style of Avalon Innovations LLP - Company No. OC364751

No comments: