Imagine going inside a retail store, trying to look for a dress to wear in a party. However, everything else is cluttered, the clothes are piling up and you can’t find where the dress racks are located. And when you finally find the perfect dress, you can’t find the fitting rooms. Instead of buying what you need, you ended up going out of the store empty-handed and wasted time. Fortunately, there is a particular service that caters to that known as shop fitting.
Shopfitting is the trade that fits out of retail stores and service shops with the necessary equipment, fixtures and fittings. It needs a shopfitter who plans, designs the layout, and installs the equipment and services. The shopfitter is employed by a shop fitting firm who provides expertise when it comes to interior design & contracting, manufacture of bespoke furniture, purchase of retail equipment and signage & fittings.
Take note that shop fitting can also be used in other commercial and leisure areas such as bars and offices.
In order to properly carry out the fitting needs of a particular company, the National Association of Shopfitters or NAS was established.
The NAS is a trade association that consists of different firms in the shopfitting and interior contracting sector. Established since 1919, NAS represents, promotes and provide services needed in terms of shopfitting and interior contracting.
Backed by an extensive list of projects and experience, NAS has worked in various industries involving retail, leisure and recreation, commercial, financial services, museums, restaurants and other sectors in need of interior quality.
A symbol of quality and reliability, the National Association of Shopfitters will always provide expert guidance, advices, services and knowledge to all its members and clients.
In order to provide the necessary level of competence and expertise in the field of shopfitters and interior contracting, NAS introduced the Shopfitting and Interior Contracting Competence Scheme.
Also referred to as SICCS, it is a national skills registration scheme that provides a skills card for the shopfitters and interior contracting sector. Launched in December 1, 2009, the scheme aims to differentiate the concerned sector from the construction industry in general and at the same time, apply common accredited standards within the sector.
It is owned by NAS and administered by the Shopfitting Independent Training Forum or SITF
The scheme provides the following benefits to individuals –
On the other hand, the scheme will provide the following benefits to employers –
The purpose of the scheme is to provide certification and accreditation to all operatives in the shopfitting and interior contracting sector and its associated industries. Although the membership may be voluntary, the NAS Skills Card is required by most construction sites in UK.
Although there is no age requirement for membership, there are some areas or companies who specify a certain age limit regarding the use of certain machines, plant or equipment.
Also, basic competency and training standards are defined by SICCS depending on the skill level of an individual. He can be an apprentice, experienced worker, supervisor or manager, director or shopfitting related professional.
The structure of SICCS is composed of core elements, the cards available, progression through the scheme and the delivery of the scheme.
SICCS Core Elements
To demonstrate the competence, skills and qualifications of an operative that will determine his eligibility, the following must be complied with –
Note that the supervisors, managers and directors should have an appropriate craft or technical qualifications as prescribed in the guidelines.