How does the NCPR mitigate the risks of product substitution?

Product substitution is prevalent during the construction process, at both the pre‐building approval and post‐building approval stages. Products can be substituted on the basis of both availability and cost. This may lead to contractual, construction or certification implications. All building owners, designers, contractors, builders and building surveyors should be aware of the reasons and consequences of product substitution. When undertaken judiciously, product substitution promotes construction innovation, increases productivity and boosts economy. However, poor product substitution can void suppliers’ warranties, breach NCC compliance, jeopardise professional liability and affect public safety.

Supported by governments and building property groups, the National Construction Product Register (NCPR), NATSPEC’s newly developed online system that effectively verifies products’ conformance and compliance claims, assists AEC practitioners to reduce the risk of substituting non‐conforming products and products with fraudulent evidence of suitability.

The NCPR is a centralised, searchable product register with conformance and compliance information for Australian and/or international standards, independently verified by NATSPEC. The NCPR helps product substitution by highlighting:

  • Compliance route via the NCC Deemed‐to‐Satisfy Provision

Search if a substitution is assessed to specific standards; search available substitutions based onselected standards; search other standards against which a substitution is assessed

  • Product limitation and exclusion

Search a substitution’s conditions for application and use in a specific project (how the product can be used in a compliant manner)

  • Type and validity of evidence of suitability

Search if the level of documentation is commensurate with the risks and consequences of failure due to using the product; search the validity of such documentation

  • Traceability of evidence of suitability

Search the substitution’s evidence of suitability and verify that it is free from indications of false/inadequate documentation; search the accreditation of conformance‐assessment authorities

In its infancy, the NCPR continues to grow with more manufacturers wishing to demonstrate quality to AEC practitioners. As a freely and readily available verification system, the NCPR aims to improve the quality and productivity of the construction industry.

Request that your suppliers be verified by contacting