Press Release: COVID-19 digitalising the CoC

The digitalisation of S.A’s gas industry

There is no truer saying that pertains to our current situation than that of Emmert Wolf – “A man is only as good as his tools.” As the government-mandated certification committee within the gas industry. This covers the fuel gases and compressed gases plus the refrigerant gas used in air conditioners and refrigeration. SAQCC Gas has taken a key step forward in digitalising the certificate of compliance (CoC) for each sector of gas usage.  A first for South Africa, the introduction of an online CoC platform will help reduce fraud and improve data capturing.

Safety in numbers

If there is one lesson that COVID-19 has taught the world is that capturing, formalising and analysis of data is key to survival. Before COVID-19 hit our shores, Gas Practitioners were dealing with the realities of a slow economy and the crippling effects of illegal gas installations. Time and time again, Gas Practitioners would uncover fraudulent CoC’s coupled with below standard installations. Moving the issuing of CoC’s into the digital space will reduce the counts of fraud and increase the traceability of perpetrators.

SAQCC Gas’s mandate is to increase the rate of certification of practitioners while decreasing the amount of non-registered gas installers and refrigeration mechanics. In essence, SAQCC Gas has advocated the need for an improved working culture within the South African gas industry.  This encompasses trust in people, transparency of work, caring for others, as well as continuous learning.

The value of integrating

Right now it is crucial for Gas Practitioners, to create and maintain a strong pervasive digital culture. Integrating digital aspects into the workflow is essential. SAQCC Gas has the foundation and resource to equip Gas Practitioners with the technology needed to execute world-class service for fuel gases and refrigeration. The call is to encourage all Gas Practitioners to use and lean on these resources.

Regardless of the competitive position, Gas Practitioners across the spectrum will face a new digitally enabled market entrant. The introduction of the digital CoC forms part of a variety of tools available to all registered with SAQCC Gas.

For over 5 years, SAQCC Gas has embarked on a digital implementation strategy and all systems have been aligned to form part of the integration.

Global movement

According to Geoffrey Cann, Author of Bits, Bytes and Barrels, growth in gas demand is shifting to Africa, Middle East and Asian economies, with South Africa featuring at the top of the list. This is confirmed by similar reports from PriceWaterhouseCooper (PWC), ESI Africa and dailymaverick. Cann continues to highlight the trend – Anything that can be digitalised will be digitalised. Looking towards first-world economies there is a sense of a renewed digital race last seen in the early 2000s. Companies larger and small are re-evaluating the impact the digital economy is having on their business models and integration strategies.

How does this all affect a Gas Practitioner sitting in Pofadder? There is a sense of isolationism in the industry, with many objections coming in the form of territory or geographical reach. Companies situated in smaller regions tend to feel less inclined to affect change, specifically towards new working models. Lessons can be drawn here from COVID-19. Like the virus, digitalisation affects all. A recent study by identifies smaller cities and towns as key boom areas within the digital space. It is the benefits of digitising your business that will help breakdown distance, economic and location challenges. The key to growth now is relying on resources available, with a key channel being SAQCC Gas.

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