Competent person schemes are changing the face of the industry, according to Eurocell
The construction industry has an unfair reputation when it comes to public perception. Despite research showing that more than 80 per cent of tradesmen frequently work for free for those in need and 38 per cent have reduced their final bill for cash strapped customers, tradespeople now have to take extra steps to reassure customers that they are the real deal. One way to do this is via joining a competent person scheme.
Whether you’re an electrician or plumber, general builder or window fitter, there will be a competent person scheme to meet your needs. Proving your skill in your chosen trade, competent person schemes also reassure your customers that you can complete high quality work, reinforced by a trade body or manufacturer, which could well result in more work for you.
We hear the term ‘competent person scheme’ bandied about regularly in the construction industry. With the industry having an unfair reputation of being rife with cowboys, quality tradespeople often need to take steps to reassure customers that they are qualified and, potentially more importantly, that they can be trusted. First of all, we need to look at what a competent person scheme actually is.
A competent person scheme is certification that a tradesperson has been deemed competent to carry out work in line with building regulations. From plumbing to roofing, they exist across the entire construction industry and highlight a tradesperson’s skill and proficiency in a particular discipline. So, why should you join one?
Knowing that an independent body has approved your work will offer reassurance to potential customers and could result in additional work as a result. Often, you will receive a logo as part of the scheme. This logo should be used on all of your marketing collateral, including your van, flyers and website so potential customers are aware of your additional accreditations. More often than not, your scheme provider will be able to provide additional marketing support such as brochure design and website building to further assist in your marketing plans.
As well as the projects that will come your way organically through the extra certification, being part of a scheme often means you qualify for lead generation opportunities, something we offer through our scheme, Eurocell Select. This means that we pass any jobs that come through to us as a business to our registered installers, which could provide a great source of income for your business.
Free training is a great opportunity for those that are part of a scheme. Within construction, installing outdated products or using incorrect methods of installation can have life threatening effects. Products used, and the ways we install them, are continually adapted and upgraded so it is important to invest your time in ongoing training.
Training is also a great way to add to your skillset and consequently, improve your offering to customers. Understanding that education does not stop after college not only helps you to stay at the top of your game but if you want to, specialise in a particular area/application. By expanding your skillset, you will also be able to upsell to your customers, offer an improved service and increase your profitability. What’s more, making sure you are up to speed in all areas of your job will limit the chances of having to turn work down due to a lack of knowledge or training.
Alongside improving your product knowledge, training can be a valuable tool in learning about any changes to industry regulations and how these will impact your working practices.
Eurocell Select installers have access to training held at various locations across the UK that includes both practical installation training to industry quality standards and classroom sessions – covering health and safety, use of PPE, and window and door removal/installation. Eurocell provides free product and installation training for all products covered within the scheme, plus top tips to overcome common issues.
Even the best installers can find themselves in disputes with customers. Whether it’s an unwarranted claim from a customer, or refusal of payment, competent person schemes can offer Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) support, which could save you significant amounts of money in small claims court. From mediation to conciliation, disputes can take significant toll on tradespeople’s time and bank account. Not only will you have to foot the bill for any time in court, but additional time spent resolving a problem will be time that you aren’t on the tools. ADR can remove the stress of this and do the heavy lifting for you.
We recently launched our Eurocell Select approved installer scheme for windows and doors, which aims to develop a trusted network of installers across the UK. Our new initiative – which is backed by CERTASS and FENSA – will allow installers of Eurocell windows and doors to gain certification following a training course and aims to help tradespeople overcome what is often deemed a ‘cowboy image’ within the industry.
The reputation our industry has isn’t fair; we work with an abundance of tradespeople that not only produce high quality levels of work but care about the industry and providing superior customer service. Competent person schemes separate the genuine tradespeople from the cowboys and we are proud to help support this.