By Swati Vora-Patel
By Swati Vora-Patel
May 10, 2019 – About this same time last year, Electro-Federation Canada (EFC) introduced a new brand identity to its members. The timing of the launch was quite intentional, as the brand was designed to reflect how the electrical market was becoming an increasingly important backbone for new developments in intelligent buildings, industrial automation, smart homes, robotics, electrification and digitalization, among other key areas.
EFC’s brand represents how we, as distributors and suppliers, market and sell electrical products that power a changing world, including LED lighting, controls and sensors that offer energy savings and personalization at home and at work; electric heating systems that provide added comfort and convenience for homeowners; energy-efficient transformers that place lower requirements on the grid; and motors and generators that support industrial automation and robotics. These are just some of the many examples of our industry’s impact on society.
Now, a year later, EFC has ‘powered up’ to roll out our brand further, unite the Canadian electrical industry and showcase all of its ingenuity and innovation. EFC’s new office space, for example, is powered by leading-edge lighting and controls to demonstrate our industry’s leadership in smart buildings, energy savings and high-quality work environments.
We have also developed a series of programs to support our mission statement: “to empower the Canadian electrical industry with market intelligence, professional development and a voice for advocacy and standards advancement within a safe, collaborative environment.”
The following are a few of our latest endeavours, all of which will be showcased at this year’s EFC Conference, running from May 28 to 30 in Quebec City. The annual event will boast the highest member attendance in more than a decade, providing opportunities for networking and developing key relationships. A business program will offer timely insight as to how our industry can better serve the world we live in, through both the types of technology we sell and how we sell them. Keynote speaker Leonard Brody will discuss how we can rewrite opportunities, so we are ready for change. And a brand-new panel of inspirational Young Professionals Network (YPN) members will cast light on how the next generation will transform our industry further.
Building an electrified nation
In February, to address future sources of power and innovation, we co-hosted an electrification summit with the Canadian Electricity Association (CEA). Participants explored the impacts of electrification on the grid, our products, our customers and industry regulations. Now, a white paper on the topic will be presented at the conference.
Supply chain excellence
Last year, we produced a research study on digital supply chain excellence. At the conference, our new supply chain committee will conduct an interactive workshop that explores how to ‘up our game’ with people and processes within a digitalized channel.
Canada’s market competitiveness is at a significant crossroads. Corporate and political mindsets must align to ensure Canadian businesses remain major contributors to innovation and productivity. To address such issues, we will host a complimentary breakfast session at this year’s conference for Canadian manufacturers.
Investing in our people
EFC is addressing human resources (HR) on three levels: how to attract talent to our market, how to retain key employees and how to ensure our industry represents equity and diversity.
To help increase awareness of our industry, members participate in our scholarship program, which awards more than 50 bursaries to Canadian post-secondary students each year.
Additionally, we have released a new video to promote the many career opportunities available in our industry, in support of our regional school outreach programs and our members’ recruiting efforts. Check it out at www.electrofed.com.
Among our workforce development programs for member companies’ employees, EFC is developing training modules to help new recruits navigate the industry ‘ecosystem’ and various codes and standards. These modules will be available beginning this summer.
Diversity and equity
At the conference, we will host our first annual national Women in Industry breakfast. This event will provide members with an opportunity to help shape our Women’s Initiative, which is designed to break down barriers and promote success.
EFC will continue exploring new ways our industry can become more diverse and inclusive. HR professionals from our member companies gather regularly at committee meetings to share best practices and gain insight into how to address new issues surrounding people management.
Powering a changing world
These efforts demonstrate the role EFC plays in powering a changing world. There is a great deal of potential in how we distribute goods and services. Together, we can make a significant difference in society.
Swati Vora-Patel is director of research and communications for EFC. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article originally appeared in the special Distribution & Supply section of the May 2019 issue of Electrical Business magazine.