The International Powered Access Federation (IPAF) has seen a surge of new members in the second half of 2021, taking the overall number beyond the milestone of 1,500 and exceeding the Federation’s budget for the year as a whole.
The increase in membership is partly owing to the powered access industry’s ongoing strong recovery after the pandemic, and also the introduction of a Safety Professional Member category, aimed at those in health & safety or related supervisory roles within powered access or wider industry, which has generated a great deal of interest.
IPAF has surpassed the membership landmark after a difficult two years amid the coronavirus pandemic. At the end of the first quarter of 2021, IPAF had just 1,431 members and set itself the challenge of reaching 1,500 by the end of 2021. As of early December, IPAF membership had already surpassed 1,500, with up to 50 applications in the pipeline, a number of which will be confirmed as members before year-end.
Peter Douglas, CEO & MD of IPAF, comments: “After such a challenging 18 months or more, it has been really heartening to see IPAF’s membership base grow steadily throughout the second half of the year in particular; it’s great we’ve surpassed our full-year budget with a few weeks of 2021 still to go.
“We know how difficult the past two years have been for our members during the pandemic, with a great deal of uncertainty still on the horizon, and we are very grateful for all those who’ve seen the value in being part of the IPAF family. For this reason, we reduced membership renewals by 25% in 2021 for all existing members, as well as introducing new member benefits and industry webinars that engaged with new and existing members alike.
“Since we returned to in-person events in August, we’ve signed up 68 new members, which shows the value firms still place on the personal touch and being able to discuss their concerns with us face to face – events such as Vertikal Days and IPAF Elevation in UK, Platformers’ Days and A+A in Germany or GIS in Italy have all proved popular.
“Take-up of the new category of Safety Professional membership has been really encouraging as well. It is aimed at individuals within larger organisations, including those employed by existing IPAF Member companies, bringing benefits, and increasing opportunities to receive direct updates from IPAF about safety and technical guidance, join exclusive webinars and events, and to engage directly with IPAF experts and fellow members. Since launching in late September, we already have 19 Safety Professional members from eight different countries, with around 20 more currently still in the application process.
“IPAF is nothing without our members, and it is encouraging to learn we are doing something well to retain and attract new members even during difficult times. We aren’t resting on our laurels, however, as there are still things we know we can improve on – our recent membership survey contained lots of positive comments but also identified areas we can improve in, and we take that valuable feedback very seriously.”