The European Federation of Associations of Locks & Builders Hardware Manufacturers


ARGE Workshops Next Steps Revealed

Hans Weissenbock

At the 2016 ARGE conference we hosted 4 workshops designed to debate and agree the next ARGE agenda. These groups were well attended and featured stimulating discussions, demonstrating a high level of engagement with the future of ARGE.  

Here’s a summary of the workshops at the ARGE Conference and the proposed next steps:

 1.    The Future Direction Of Standards Development

In recent years, the development of standards by CEN and the European Commission (EC) has been unsatisfactory. Based on our knowledge of market needs and trends, the workshop focused on identifying opportunities for developments in the field. The next steps for this group will be:

Step 1 - The ARGE Executive Board will revise and define together with ARGE Working Group C (Standardisation):

  • ARGE objectives concerning CEN standardisation
  • Outline the approach and agree a broad strategy for the process of standardisation, supported by CEN TC33
  • Define the scope of project, including lobbying at European Commission
  • Agree the deliverables and the resource needed to achieve this ? 

Step 2 – The group will then present, discuss and agree upon the new standardisation approach with the ARGE membership.

Step 3 – The ARGE Executive Board and ARGE Working Group C, in co-operation with CEN TC33 Working Group 4, will establish a timeline and resourced plan. ? 

Step 4 – Once agreed the execution of the plan will aim to improve the standardisation process for ARGE products, seeking to create a more efficient process.

 2.    Pan European Routines For Master Key Systems (MKS)

The purpose of this group was to create an industry wide understanding and guideline for the handling of MKS Data related to security requirements. This includes the planning and calculation of MKS but also its encryption, transmission and storage between manufacturers, dealers and end users.

The next steps following this workshop will be:

Step 1 - Establish if this workshop has value

Step 2 – If there is an opportunity here, how will it be structured and organised going forward

3.    European Quality Brand

CE marking has afforded little protection against lower quality products, meaning our industry continues to be exposed to low cost, low quality products offering inferior performance. This workshop proposes the development of a European quality mark for all ARGE members.

The recommendation is that ARGE makes this a second priority due to the long-term nature of this target, the difficulties of achieving a common agenda that is appropriate for all National Associations and the potential investment needed in marketing and lobbying.

The next step is to further explore this proposal at a meeting, which will address the following items:

  • Clarify the scope and limits of the project
  • Conduct a SWOT analysis
  • Present the outcomes and proposals to the ARGE Board.

 4.    The Application Of Standards Covering Smart Homes, Connected and Elmech Technologies

The rate of change of technology in the smart, connected and elmech market is accelerating to a point where standards cannot keep up, and many guidelines reflect only the product requirements and not the connected systems. The fourth workshop asked the question; is this an issue ARGE should take the lead on?

From this workshop the next steps were agreed as:

Step 1 - A working group is to be created, which will initially define:

  • ARGE objectives
  • Broad approach/strategy, which will identify how best to achieve our aims
  • The scope of the project, including the products that would be covered
  • Deliverables and what we hope to achieve
  • Project resourcing

Step 2 – The ARGE working group will review the progress made in the UK with their work on a smart lock standard encompassing all the elements of a connected home system. The UK will have a draft standard by the end of the year and it would be logical to take this into consideration and potentially use this to “kick start” a European wide standard.

 Step 3 – The ARGE working group will assess the impact of the UK standard on plans for a European wide standard, to be driven by ARGE.

 Step 4 – The ARGE working group will establish a timeline and resourced plan.

Further announcements on the future ARGE agenda will be made shortly and information on the workshop outcomes and presentations from the Conference can be found in the downloads section of the website.