Thursday, December 30, 2010

Carpet and Rug Institute's Werner Braun on Seal of Approval Program

Carpet and Rug Institute's Werner Braun on Seal of Approval Program

Facing a Tough Crowd: Carpet and Rug Institute President Werner Braun answers tough questions about Seal of Approval Program

In his weekly column for the Dalton Daily Citizen dated October 15, 2010 and titled "Working with carpet cleaners", Carpet and Rug Institute President Werner Braun discusses his October presentation at Connections, a trade show for people in the cleaning and restoration industry.

Werner spoke about the Carpet and Rug Institute’s Seal of Approval testing and certification program for carpet cleaning solutions and equipment, specifically, the programs’ growth and changes during its first five years. He also addressed some of the program’s critics and found more areas for agreement than he initially expected. Werner explains:

“Unfortunately, not every one views the world of cleaning carpet through the same pair of glasses.

For the greater majority, [the Seal of Approval] testing program has proven to be a godsend. It has allowed [equipment and solutions manufacturers] to measure their performance, and as I like to say around here, if you can’t measure then you can’t improve it. That’s exactly what has happened: Chemical and equipment manufacturers have found ways to better their products through the testing, and today it is the consumer who is reaping the benefits.

There is a small vocal minority, however, that is not happy with the way their products have performed in the tests, and instead of spending money to research them and better them, have chosen to try to discredit the CRI SOA program.

…A funny thing happened along this road to ambush: There was dialogue.

…We are advocates for not only our manufacturers but for our consumers and for the people who serve our industry in whatever capacity. We have listened to the valid complaints and we have addressed them.

CRI is not here to rule the cleaning industry or any industry with an iron fist… If people have legitimate complaints or questions, our staff and our committees are always here to welcome them with open arms and address those that we can.”

Thank you, Werner!



Stephen Lewis said...

I was there, and Werner did a great job handling the critics in the audience. He allowed them to have their say and was very diplomatic in his responses. Thank you, Werner!

Bethany said...

Hi Stephen,
On behalf of Werner and CRI, thank you for your comment. Bethany

Jay said...


I have a question that seems to me to be relevant to this blog post.

Shouldn't certifying firms mandate some sort of verifiable term of experience before handing out certifications?

it seems to me that a lot of companies are taking young people off the street giving them a 2 or 3 day course and sending them off as professionals.

Nearly all programs have growing pains, it seems this SOA program is feeling it's own now. I have no doubt that most of the rough edges will be smoothed over given enough time. But it bothers me that our industry has no apprenticeships.
What are your feeling on this matter and do you see the CRI taking any steps to fix this issue.

Carpet Cleaning in Las Vegas

Bethany said...

Hi Jay,
Thanks for your comment - you make some excellent points and I will answer you as best I can. The Seal of Approval has always emphasized the importance of proper training and strongly urges SOA Service Providers to be IICRC-certified. As you, know, SOA is a voluntary program. As I understand it, the Cleaning and Maintenance Issues Management Team, which makes decisions about the SOA program, is currently in the process of evaluating the Service Provider requirements. As always, I will report on any changes or additions to SOA on this blog. Bethany

John Braun said...

The IICRC seems to be the largest certification board in the cleaning industry. But what about other certifications? Are they going to approve any other certification boards?

The Carpet And Rug Institute said...

Hello John, While this may be an issue CRI addresses in future, it is not on our slate of active issues. Thanks for your question. Contact Pat Jennings at pjennings(at)carpet-rug(dot)org if you have more questions about our Seal of Approval program. Bethany

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