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An update from IHE President Stephen Webb
- Friday September 3, 2021
COUNCIL UPDATE – Summer 2021
Dear IHE Member,
It is normal practice for the President of the Institute to provide an update at our National AGM (held on 28th July 2021) of the previous year’s activities and we would like to share this update with all the members of the IHE.
Whilst we have all experienced a very challenging year, the Institute remains in a strong position and has demonstrated the necessary resilience and abilities to adapt to what will be the new norm. Much of the success in the past year can be attributed to the hard work of our head office team and our supporting volunteering members.
The pandemic has dictated a need to be flexible and to adapt to a number of virtual ways of working and the IHE has made significant progress in providing training opportunities which are remotely accessible.
Our IHE CPD Hub which is provided to our members gives access to a wide range of training events and this has been heavily supported by the webinars facilitated by our IHE Branches.
Key headlines are as follows:
- 37 branch led CDP webinars since early Oct 2020 including our overseas Middle Eastern branch
- 2400 attendees (over 4000 were registered)
- Highest registered event saw 265 attendees
- Regular CPD offers on LinkedIn and YM
In terms of conventional IHE courses, a number have now been delivered online with the intention to offer a blended approach of face to face and virtual, and we are already experiencing a healthy demand for face to face courses in the coming months and year.
Branch Liaison Group
2020/2021 has seen the reinvigoration of the Branch Liaison Group which is attended by the Chair and Secretaries from across all of our Branches and is also supported by head office and the Presidential Team. The group has met three times since its re-launch, where I led this initially, with James Houghton our Council Branch Liaison Officer, recently taking on the responsibility as chairperson for this group.
The Group to date has made good progress with the benefits being the sharing of CPD opportunities, a coordinated approach across our branches, and bringing head office and our branches closer together working in a collaborative manner to best serve our membership.
As part of my Presidential aspirations, I am keen for the IHE to develop an environmental strategy which aims to demonstrate a greener approach to how we run the Institute and that we evidence measures which aim to reduce our carbon footprint.
We have now formed a Carbon Steering Group which has been tasked with implementing this strategy. Initial outputs are likely to be an IHE Mission Statement, IHE Travel Plan and an Environmental Assessment to be undertaken, in order for us to understand where we are currently as an Institute in terms of carbon generation.
Professional Development Partnership (PDP)
Our Chief Executive Steve Spender has made great progress in further developing this initiative which was launched a couple of years ago. The objectives being to develop an agreement between the IHE and organisations for the benefit of both parties and our Membership.
There are 11 PDPs to date: Local Transport Projects, JCT, Road Surface Treatment Association, WJ Road Markings, Jacobs, Keysoft Solutions, Buchanan Computing, NAL Ltd, A New Winter Approach (ANWA), Clearview Intelligence, and our first local authority which is Telford & Wrekin Council.
IHE Membership levels remains strong currently at circa 3500 and approximately 30% of our membership is professionally registered. The last year has also seen the IHE offer virtual professional reviews which has been instrumental in maintaining our professional registration.
We carried out our IHE Membership survey in December of last year. The feedback has been gratefully received and will aid us in shaping the Institute for the future.
2020/2021 has seen the newly launched Talk-Mobility intranet page, allowing members to openly ask questions specific to their field of work, collaborate with our professionals by information sharing and facilitating problem-solving within the Highways sector. The vision is to provide a platform that brings our community together to share and support one another. It is based on a ‘by the community, for the community’ approach and is here to serve all those delivering services and schemes across highways and transport networks.
We encourage you to get involved, remaining respectful of the opinions of others and respect the Rules of Engagement. There are many topics such as Active Travel, Asset Management, Highways Safety Inspectors, Traffic Signals, Traffic Signs, and Winter Services with many more topics to join the conversation.
In terms of governance the Institute has maintained the normal cycle of Council Meetings and Exec Board Meetings, all of which have been virtual, and we look forward to our first face to face Council meeting which is scheduled for October this year in London.
We have new appointed financial auditors in Magma Chartered Accountants, and we have welcomed their assistance in their first year in the auditing the 2020 annual accounts.
Several established IHE documents have been reviewed and updated and these include the Branch Byelaws, Financial Procedures, and a New Council Members pack.
Finally, as you may know the IHE HQ team moved offices in August 2020 and have now settled into our new head office, which is based at Euston House, 24 Eversholt Street, London, NW1 1DB. I recently had the pleasure of attending our new premises and its location is immediately adjacent to Euston station, therefore is favorably positioned for transport links.
Stephen Webb IEng FIHE
President of IHE