Membership is available to companies that meet the strict membership criteria and have a registered office within the UK. Manufacturers and suppliers of contract furnishing products and services are welcome to apply for membership which will be evaluated by the board and council. Membership is not automatic but when achieved is recognition of a company’s professional status.
In a competitive market it is often difficult for customers to differentiate one company from another. Membership of the BCFA is increasingly seen by many as a necessity and a valuable asset. Whilst there are some associations who are happy to accept all applications this is certainly not the case with the BCFA. All membership applications must be approved by the BCFA Board but before the Board even consider an application there are some fundamental requirements that we look at before making recommendations to the Board.
All potential new members must:
- Already be significantly engaged in contract furnishing design, manufacturing or supply.
- Whilst BCFA members do not have to be a British Manufacturer (many are) they are required to add value through service, design and expertise.
- Have a UK operation and have been operating in the UK for a minimum of two years.
- Pass a factory/site inspection.
- Be accredited with all the relevant manufacturing standards for their products.
- Have passed a credit check, be profitable and have no adverse credit records such as outstanding CCJs.
- Have no record of legal disputes regarding design right infringements with other manufacturers or designers.
- Provide evidence that their business practices match the BCFA Code of Practice.
- Have received no adverse comments on their business practice from the BCFA Board, BCFA Council and a panel of sector representatives from within the membership.
Whilst there are potentially hundreds of companies that we could target for membership, many would not pass even these initial checks.
On joining the BCFA all new members must sign the BCFA Code of Practice that ensures an ongoing commitment to meeting the Association’s standard of professionalism and providing the market with the highest standards of service and business practice. Failure to comply with the Code can ultimately result in a membership not being renewed by the BCFA. The BCFA Code of Practice has recently been updated and we will be asking all members to sign the new Code during 2019.
We have in the past perhaps understated our accreditation process, but this has changed, and we are now being much more vocal about it both in our marketing and in our personal contacts as part of our campaign to show architects, designers and end users that BCFA members represent the best in contract manufacturing and supply.