The Rail Alliance is all about helping organisations fulfil their business potential and is the essential business resource for any ambitious company involved in the rail sector, whether already in rail or looking to break into this growth market.
- Rail Alliance Networking Events
Serving its members with activities designed to promote success and growth, the Rail Alliance specialises in delivering high quality industry themed events with excellent networking opportunities. Typically there is at least one networking event every month at carefully selected venues and locations, from significant industry venues such as Network Rail’s National Centre (Quadrant) to member-hosted events and at all the major UK rail trade fairs.
These events are free for members to attend (non-members are charged at £100pp+VAT) and as your membership covers all employees you can opt to send different staff to different events as suits your business.
- 3rd Party Exhibitions & Conferences
Railtex, Infrarail, InnoTrans, Advanced Engineering are the big industry events at which the Rail Alliance will always be found, in addition to supporting a variety of relevant conferences and seminars and carefully selected trade fairs. At specific trade fairs we offer members a place on the Rail Alliance Hub guaranteeing a heightened presence, and we are able to negotiate various exclusive discounts for members at many other conferences and events.
We are regularly updating our programme of events and have several exciting opportunities for our members in 2017. Please see below our events listing up until November 2017 for a flavour of the events we offer and promote:
Upcoming Events to November 2017:
- 9th March – the Midlands Engine Trade Summit
- 16th March – Get Into Rail, Aberdeen – a diversification event in conjunction with Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Manufacturing Advisory Service
- 17th March – Supply Chain Collaboration event – in conjunction with the University of South Wales, The Collaborative Working Institute and others
- 29th March – members’ networking: Cyber Security for the Rail Industry
- 6th April – the RSG SME Conference
- 27th April – members’ networking event: Rolling Stock Refurbishment – details tbc
- 9th – 11th May Railtex – Members’ networking event 0800 Tuesday 9th at the show + members’ hub
- Late May – members’ networking event: Procurement in Franchising – stations focus – details tbc
- June – Rail Live (a Rail Alliance event)
- October – RVE (Rail Alliance Member discount available)
- November – Advanced Engineering 2017 (easyfairs.com/advanced-engineering-2017/advanced-engineering-2017/) – featuring a Members’ hub and specialist seminars
We are constantly adding to our events programme and recommend that you check the Rail Alliance website www.railalliance.co.uk/events/ regularly for the latest details – although you will receive a monthly newsletter with information on the events coming up. Please do follow us on twitter @therailalliance / #RAEvents for updates on a regular basis.
- Route-to-market support and advice – We offer a variety of ways in which we can help companies established in rail, and those new to the sector and our focus is always on supporting our members in the supply chain. This is done in a variety of ways from face-to-face introductions at our events to tailored introductions up and down the supply chain as is relevant to your company. We can provide advice on the product approvals and acceptance processes and have extensive knowledge across the team of this area. Behind the scenes we sit on a number of significant closed industry meetings, the information from which we use to further support our services – including the Rail Delivery Group, Network Rails’ Directors Forum, RISQS and several more. Our Chairman, Colin Flack, is Secretariat to the Rail Supply Group (RSG) giving the Rail Alliance and its members an important platform to help shape the UK strategy for rail.
- Marketing support – We are very active on social media (twitter and LinkedIn) and encourage all of our members to follow and tag us on twitter. We can also produce member case studies to publish on our website in addition to sharing news stories. We are extremely proud of the strong media relationships that we have with all of the mainstream rail, manufacturing and engineering publications – including: RAIL, Modern Railways, Rail Reconnections, Rail Infrastructure, Rail Professional, Rail Engineer, The Manufacturer to mention a few.
We also send out regular email newsletters to our members and our wider industry contacts with a variety of information as well as member news features.
- Provision of an international test & trial scheme “Test Voucher Scheme” or otherwise known as TVS – We provide companies access to an approved test & trials centre – one of several in the UK. The Rail Safety and Standards Board’s (RSSB) Test Voucher Scheme (TVS) gives up to (typically) three days subsidised access to test and trials facilities within the UK to assist UK-based companies in developing their products, goods and services for the rail sector.
Typically, this assistance is offered to companies transiting through the latter stages of the product development programme. Depending on individual requirements this may include test loop and infrastructure, traction, rolling stock and trials staff time.
- Access to R&D/I – we work closely with a number of specialist rail research universities throughout the UK. Should you be looking to collaborate with academia to support in-house research please let us know and we can introduce you to the relevant university/universities. Academic collaborations can take many forms ranging from outsourcing R&D for a specific project, working with a university on a KTP (Knowledge Transfer Placement) or year in industry placements, amongst others. We can also provide information on upcoming R&D grants under Horizon2020, Shift2Rail, RSSB and Innovate UK calls and through our ERCI network (more below) can potentially introduce you to international R&D/I partners.
- Specialised industry support programmes – including:
BS11000 Collaboration Courses – BS11000 – the world’s first national standard for Collaborative Business Relationships – has been embraced by Network Rail as part of their ‘Alliancing’ philosophy in delivering over £3Bn worth of infrastructure projects collaboratively and is of increasing import to the rolling stock fraternity and others. The Rail Alliance is working towards its own BS11000 accreditation and, with accredited facilitators within our management team, we are poised to help our members to get started along their journey to achieving accreditation to the BS11000 standard. Please note that Rail Alliance members are eligible for discounted training fees.
Rail Mentor Scheme – I attach a copy of the mentor flier; this is a free service we run on behalf of the Rail Supply Group. Please take a look at the website for full details and also to register for the scheme www.railmentor.com. If you have any questions on the scheme and want to talk over these before registering, John Beale firstname.lastname@example.org (Programme Manager) can give you more information.
Spotlight on Wales & Spotlight on Scotland – The Rail Alliance works closely with the Welsh Government as well as with the Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Manufacturing Advisory Service (SMAS) and others to deliver rail supply chain events.
International Networking & Collaboration – The Rail Alliance is an accredited “Trade Challenge Partner” to the Department for International Trade. These Partners are drawn from Trade Associations, Accredited Trade Organisations and other membership organisations focused on overseas trade, and represent virtually all sectors and industries of the UK economy. This means that we are able to demonstrate the right level of sector specialism and expertise vis-à-vis the DIT’s work in the rail sector on global scale. Please see www.railalliance.co.uk/international-erci/ for regular updates on export opportunities. We are also a founding member of the ERCI (European Regional Clusters Initiative). The 11 member clusters represent more than 1,000 companies from the industry from all over Europe. The goals of ERCI are the strengthening of the competitiveness of the European railway supply industry by developing joint innovation projects among its members as well as establishing stronger business relations among them. http://www.eurailclusters.com/index.html
Formula Rail – delivers the platform, conditions and expertise for enabling procurement of new and innovative supplier solutions. Formula Rail is simply a smarter way for buyers and suppliers to work together to source the best performing and best value ideas, products and services.
- Bespoke Members Events – Several of our members have engaged with the Rail Alliance to assist them with the marketing and delivery of various events on their behalf.
- EEF Affiliate Membership – we are pleased to confirm that through the Rail Alliance’s partnership with EEF, the manufacturers’ organisation, you, as a member of Rail Alliance are entitled to free Affiliate Membership of EEF. EEF is the voice of UK manufacturing and engineering and a leading provider of business support. Your affiliate membership provides access to a wide range of industry intelligence, resources and insight, policy representation, networking events and the EEF member Advantages Scheme. The attached flyer outlines the benefits available from this arrangement. The Rail Alliance is the EEF’s chosen partner for the rail sector.