The 2015 year has certainly kicked off with a bang in the Australasian self storage industry! Several acquisitions in late 2014 and in early 2015 have shown that interest within our sector is extremely buoyant. The Board has completed our first meeting for the year. We are setting out some clear short, medium and long term goals for the membership and the Association, which we hope will be of great benefit to all members in the future. In all of our decisions we consider our members’ needs first and foremost and hope that you will benefit from the continual evolution and improvement of the Association.
Below is a brief summary of some of the matters that we are currently working on:
Industry Data Compilation: We can clearly quantify our membership base, however in recent years, we have struggled to accurately quantify the actual size of our industry in terms of facility numbers, number of storage units and gross square metres. With this in mind, the Board and the Association have started a research project to accurately quantify these figures.
This was an ambitious project to undertake and we feel that in the long term it will benefit the members and the Association exponentially. An initial ‘pilot’ research into one of our regions, which has almost 80 self storage centres, identified that a number of the centres were not members of the Association. We are not suggesting that all regions will have non-members, but it does highlight the opportunity that we have as an industry to promote the benefits of SSAA membership.
An increased membership means that a greater number of storage centres have the opportunity to use what the Association can offer. They are shown the best practice techniques, heralded by the Association, which would also help reduce the exposure to our industry from rogue operators.
The Board members believe that the analysis and growth of our membership base is critical for the ongoing success of the Association. Over the coming months, we will provide you with updates on this project.
I would like to make special mention of the sub-committee managing this project – Keith Edwards, Darren Marshall, Andrew Brooks, Malcolm Collins and Sally Steel. Simone Hill, with her team, will be managing the statistical analysis, compilation and reporting to the sub-committee. A huge thank you to all involved and we are looking forward to sharing our findings with you.
Website update: This is a top priority for the SSAA team. We do not want to rush this project and would like to make sure that we provide the best possible resource for our members. Furthermore, we strongly believe that any potential customers, wanting to find an operator in your region, should be able to do so easily through our website. This will hopefully deliver some real value to members in the form of more enquiries.
Owners Summit Uluru: The Uluru summit is taking shape and most speakers are now confirmed. The draft schedule that Simone Hill and the team are working on is now really taking shape. Please make sure you diarise the dates from 11 to 13 August 2015 for this fun, knowledge packed and monolithic event!
Staff in Storage Training & Development Retreat: Simone Hill and Rachel Muir, who is our Membership & Marketing Coordinator and their teams are busily promoting this training and development retreat. This is the first time that the Association has offered this type of event to our members. The program they have developed is interactive, informative and educational. If you are an employee of a self storage centre and involved in the day to day management and operations, then this retreat is not be missed! It will be held in Melbourne on Thursday April 30th and Friday May 1st 2015.
Membership classification: The Board have discussed this topic at length over several meetings. We are trying to optimise a fair and equitable system for all our members. Watch this space for more updates!
Review of the Almanac and the demand study: The format of the Almanac and demand study has been static for a number of years. We are assessing these in an effort to make sure they remain valuable and relevant to our members and the storage industry. Once we have completed the data compilation project, we will be in a better position to make further decisions about these resources. We are hopeful this will allow us to further evaluate what is relevant to our industry now and what may be in the future.
The Association’s calendar is full of events in the first half of this year, so please keep an eye on the upcoming events in your region. Please take the time to look at, and hopefully book, a seat at the Staff in Storage Training & Development Retreat or the Owners Summit in Uluru.
I wish you all the best in the meantime.