Australia’s two leading providers of access consulting and education services, Architecture & Access and the Institute of Access Training Australia (IATA) Access Audits Australia, have merged.
Architecture & Access directors Mr Chris Porter and Mr Andrew Sanderson say the merger will provide significant benefits to clients and industry by advancing professional practice, education and service delivery into the future.
Ms Joe Manton, respected leader in the field of access consulting and founder of IATA, will join the company as management consultant, ensuring a smooth transition and continuity of education and training services.
For current clients and students the key message is “business as usual” with Architecture & Access and IATA continuing to provide services under existing branding and personnel.
Chris, Andrew and Joe believe it is the right time to merge, combining resources and leveraging the strengths of both companies to prepare for an upswing in demand for skilled access consultants.
“There is a shortage of experienced access consultants, and increasing demand from clients seeking advice and assurance on the extent of their obligations, risk and opportunity in this critical area of compliance and non-discrimination,” says Andrew.
“Access consulting has become a highly technical profession, responsible for guiding the work of architects and construction professionals to meet obligations to provide universally accessible premises, public transport and information.”
“To meet this challenge, we will take a strategic approach to workforce development by providing quality education and training, creating industry links for employment opportunities for new graduates, developing on-the-job training and professional development programs.”
“Students will benefit immediately from the merger, as Access Consulting course lecturers are drawn from the industry’s most knowledgeable and experienced practitioners.” says Chris.
“Our goal is to develop the next generation of access consultants, highly skilled professionals, up-to-date with laws, regulations and best practice in relation to access, and highly responsive to the needs of clients.”
The directors agree that the merger has the strongest possible support from all staff.
“Our staff are excited by the prospect of an enriched experience through the integration of professional practice, education and training,” says Chris.
“Education is also the key part of our strategy to achieve universal access in all developments, by embedding best practice and supporting cultural change as we respond to specific issues and projects involving access to the built environment.”
With over 60 years combined experience delivering access consulting services and training programs, the directors agree that high impact education leads to greater access to the built environment for people with disability and the wider community.
The company will bring a broad perspective on education through: