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Furnishing futures 2016 Conference

7-8 July Australia’s Furnishing Industry Recognised VET Professional Development Event

Program Day 1 – Thursday 7 July

9:00Master of Ceremonies:
Jo Pearson (United Kingdom)

Introduction to the Conference:
Carlo Gosatti, Chair, Australian Furniture Association (Western Australia, Australia)
9:15Welcome address
VET Reform and how it has impacted on the Furnishing Industry

Senator Nick Xenophon, Independent Senator for South Australia, (South Australia, Australia)
10:00Morning Tea
10:30Panel: Succeeding from local to global markets

The Australian economy is an integral part of the global economy. Australian businesses no longer focus only on the domestic Australian marketplace.

Global competition grows as Australia signs more Free Trade Agreements with our Asian neighbours. So how will this affect the Australian furnishing industry and the skills required to succeed in global markets?

Panel members will outline the issues facing the industry, identify the skills required to successfully compete in a global marketplace and their experiences so far.

Diane Tipping, Chair, Export Council of Australia
Andrew Clarke, Partner, Aitken Partners, (Victoria, Australia)
Alec Blacklaw, Principal, Blacklaw Advisory, (Victoria, Australia)
11:30Panel: Business Tools – secrets to succeeding with the business tools of the trade

Point-of-sale, inventory and stock control, workflow and task management, job scheduling, human resources, invoicing, bookkeeping and cloud accounting, eCommerce, warehouse management, communication — tools to help make the complex stuff simple so you can make the good stuff better.

This session builds on the previous session. Panel members will share the ‘secrets’ to successful business transactions in global markets.

Brett Hansen, Hansens Accounting, (Victoria, Australia)
Tony Harcourt, CEO, Rype, (Queensland, Australia)
12:30Networking Lunch
1:45Panel: The new era of manufacturing

Australia has already entered the new era of manufacturing; we are just too caught up in old ideas of ‘what manufacturing is’ to understand. Learn about the recent world developments and how these can be applied in Australia. Listen to some of the nation’s leaders in manufacturing innovation. Learn about the latest thinking in global trends straight from the World Manufacturing Forum of IMS

John Sheridan, CEO, Digital Business insights, (Queensland, Australia)
Michael Siddons, Senior BDM, A2K Technologies (NSW, Australia)
3:00Afternoon Tea
3:15Panel: Skills and Accreditation in the Australian Furnishing Community of Practice Network (AFCoPN)

The Australian Skills Quality Authority Users’ Guide of Standards for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) explicitly outlines the requirements for RTO’s to consult with industry on development of training programs, assessment strategies, and resource development.

Participants of AFCoPN systematically uses the outcome of industry engagement to ensure continuous valid industry feedback is provided for:

a. training and assessment strategies, practices and resources; and
b. current industry skills of trainers and assessors.

Simona Jobbagy, Head of Department, Design, Media and ICT, Swinburne University, (Victoria, Australia)
Gary Dunshea, Industry Liaison Officer, Manufacturing Skills Australia (NSW, Australia)
4:15Panel: The Impact of Recalls on Your Business

The high level of media attention focused on furniture recalls in the past 12 months has caused a great deal of concern for wholesalers, retailers and consumers alike. Learn more from those who have experienced the good, the bad and the ugly ramifications and the business impacts that reverberate throughout the whole industry when recalls are activated. What are the steps taken by proactive companies to avoid such negative outcomes? Our panellists will cover the steps to take to mitigate such risks.

Stephan Pesch, Vice- General Manager - Hardlines-South Greater China, TUV Rheinland, (Ghanzhou, China)
Barbara Geens, Chair of the National Retail Association’s Technical Standards Committee, (NSW, Australia)
Ian Burton, Technical Manager, AFRDI, (Tasmania, Australia)
5:00Close of Day 1

Program Day 2 – Friday 8 July

9:00Master of Ceremonies:
Jo Pearson (United Kingdom)
9:15Panel: Doing Nothing is Costing YOU Money $$$

Reviewing the day to day expenses of running your business can save you hundreds, even thousands. And what about the money you have that you don’t even know you have?
A snapshot from our experts on how to save money or find the $$$ you didn’t even know are yours.

Michael Corigliano, Director, Click Compare Connect, (Victoria, Australia)
Melinda Di Vita, Relationship Manager IOOF Holdings Limited, (Victoria, Australia)
Bernardo Moyano, Senior Financial Planner, AB Phillips, (Victoria, Australia)
9:45Panel: How Your Business Should Invest Your Marketing $$$

Advertising. Digital Media. Exhibitions and Trade Shows. It’s all too much. So how do you decide where to spend your valuable marketing bucks for the best return on investment? Hear from the experts in media, marketing and events with the top tips for success and how to track it.

Lynn Hill, Business Development Manager, Graphic Publishing, (QLD, Australia)
Marie Kinsella, CEO, International Exhibition & Conference Group, (Victoria, Australia)
10:45Morning tea
11:15Panel: New Technologies aligning augmented reality, social media and online business tools

No longer a fad – social media has become the medium of communications and culture in today’s digital world. How can an effective social media and online shopping strategy deliver value to your business? And what is Augmented Reality?

Joseph Bruzzaniti, CEO, Connect Furniture, (Victoria, Australia)
Jonathan Keyse, Lead Producer Augmented Reality, Plattar, (Victoria, Australia)
Adam Metherell, Senior Purchasing Manager, Milan Direct, (Victoria, Australia)
12:00Panel: What constitutes best practice and quality assurance?

‘Best practice’, ‘Consumer Law’ and ‘Quality Assurance’ are terms which many of us are very familiar with. But what do they actually mean and where does responsibility lie?

This session will use case studies to clarify these issues and provide participants with some strategies to develop best practice models for their organisations.

A MUST attend event for Retailers, Wholesalers and Importers.

Consumer Guarantees for Furniture – Domestic and Commercial:
a guide for consumers (AFA)

Craig Cock, Quality Assurance, Australian Furniture Association, (Victoria, Australia)
Darren Prior, UpCare, (QLD, Australia)
Darren Prior, Co-Founder and Director UpCare, (Former Founder/Director The Leather Doctor) (QLD, Australia)
1:30Networking lunch
2:15Panel: Education & Training what does this mean for employers – Accreditation and Skills Standards explained to minimise this confusion

We talk about Training Packages, Qualifications, Units of Competency, Elements, Range of Conditions, Assessment, Currency and the list goes on. But what does it all mean to employers and employees? AND why is it tied to consumer demand?

Alex Milne, President, Kitchen and Bathroom Designers Institute (KBDi), (QLD, Australia)
Leigh Hill, Senior Educator, Furniture Joinery Manufacturing, Building Construction and Architectural Design, Holmesglen Institute, (Victoria, Australia)
3:15Afternoon tea
3:45Panel: An overview of how to access Australian Government Funding to grow your business

This session will provide information about how business can access Australian Federal and State Government grants to de-risk and grow their businesses. Learn about how your company can receive a refund on your international marketing spend and R&D expenditure. Find out how to plan your business growth by accessing capital equipment grants. Treadstone will reveal how government works in relation to grants, what you need to know and common mistakes to avoid based on real examples and success stories.

Peter Nolle, Treadstone, Austrade approved consultant, (Victoria, Australia)
Diana Karambalis, Treadstone, Austrade approved consultant, (Victoria, Australia)
Steven Dowling, Treadstone, Austrade approved consultant, (Victoria, Australia)
4:15Panel: Future leaders focus: Focusing on the next generation of designers and makers

Where will the future leaders of the Australian furnishing industry come from? How do you recognise, attract and develop these future leaders?
These are the questions that will be answered in the final panel session. Panellists will discuss their experiences and provide insights into how to foster the next generation of leaders in the Australian furniture industry.

Adam Fisher, Engineering Design Manager, MBD, 2015 AFA Master of the Year, (Victoria, Australia)
Dylan Falecki, The Living Room, Channel 10 (New South Wales, Australia)
Mary Maksemos, Mary Maksemos Design, (Victoria, Australia)
5:00Conference conclusion: Master of Ceremonies: Jo Pearson (United Kingdom)
Final address: Patrizia Torelli, CEO, Australian Furniture Association (Australia)
From 5:15Networking and VIP Reception