Visit the Installer Support Hub at FiT Show

Certass is creating a live forum at the Installer Support Hub on Stand H40 at FiT Show 2021 in September.

The Installer Support Hub is a must visit stand for installers to find expert advice on all aspects of their business, including certification, competency, insurance, finance and business support.

Jon Vanstone, Chair of Certass and FiT Show Ambassador, says: “With the success of our members-only Facebook forum over the last year, we wanted to use our FiT Show stand as an opportunity to bring the forum to life, and that’s where the Installer Support Hub idea came from.

“As well as having the Certass team on hand to talk about certification, MTC, the latest information from Government and the massive benefits that come with Certass membership, we are inviting our key partners from the industry to support installers with other areas of their business.

“We are focussed on supporting the SMEs that are the vital connection between consumers and our industry supply chain, and we understand they often wear many ‘hats’ during their working day. We have built our member benefit package to support them with everything from HR to finance packages, to make working life easier. Existing members can find out more, and new members are welcome to visit and discover what Certass membership can offer for them.

“It’s a process driven by what our members ask us for in our daily conversations with them and their comments in our lively Facebook forum. The whole team is looking forward to being at FiT Show and chatting to members in person about how we can help and support them through 2021 and beyond.”

Visit the Installer Support Hub at FiT Show, from 26-28 September 2021.

New Head of Member Services for Certass

Danelle Kaukau has been named Head of Member Services at Certass, in recognition of her impressive work to support installers and their businesses through the Covid-19 pandemic.

Since the launch of the Certass Trade Association Members-only Forum, Danelle’s role has developed to give members easier access to the Certass team to get their queries answered quickly and accurately. Danelle has facilitated this by running the forum and working directly with members to support their businesses with advice, resources and information.

Jason Clemmit, Managing Director at Certass, says: “Danelle has become the go-to person for so many of our members as she makes sure that the right information is delivered to them when they need it most.

“This has been most apparent during the pandemic, when the pace of information change has been so rapid. Danelle has taken the lead on processing this information to make sure members understand what is relevant and how it will affect their business.

“Her close relationship with both members and the internal team means she is the vital link between our operations and our members, which is crucial for us to develop and improve our offering to installers and distribute the right information and resources to help keep their businesses operating safely and effectively.”

The announcement of Danelle’s new title coincides with International Women’s Day and the 2021 theme is #ChooseToChallenge.

Jason adds: “With women so underrepresented in our sector, it is so important for organisations like Certass to celebrate the achievements of our diverse workforce and create an inclusive culture, where everyone in our team can shine. Danelle’s achievements are a perfect example of this in practice.”

Certass members can chat to Danelle direct via the Certass Members-only Facebook Forum.

5 Things to Look for in a Competent Persons Scheme

Certass Competent Person Scheme

If you’re looking for a new Competent Persons Scheme that gives you value and is on your side, talk to Certass. We offer a whole package of benefits for your business, all for free so you can get on with the job, without any extra costs.

1. Digital presence

We help you kick start your online presence by including a free company profile page that will help homeowners to find you online. We have more than 1,000 homeowners searching for a contractor on our website every month. You can get found by potential customers who will also be able to see the great reviews which have been left for you by previous customers.

2. Knowledge and training

MTC changes are coming this year and there will be more focus on installers being able to demonstrate their competency on site. Our MTC Continuum members have free access to our Glazing Competency Portal which has bite-size training sessions, so installers can prove their knowledge and competency ahead of the 2021 changes. By opting to do this, you may reduce your inspection rate.

Find out more about the Glazing Competency Portal here.

3. Low cost, high value CPS

Our Certass Competent Person Scheme membership fee is £24.95^ per month, with no joining fees, and our job registrations start at £1.50^. It’s easy to switch to Certass. It starts with you completing a simple online form and once we complete the sign up process, you can register your installations right away. We don’t charge extra for any membership benefits – it’s all included in your membership fee.

4. Certass Trade Association Membership

Certass TA works alongside you to help your business grow, by offering useful, practical hands-on support, and we make sure to share your views at Government level. All Certass TA members have access to our members-only Facebook forum, where you can ask any questions to fellow installers across the country and members or the Certass team. You can also ask questions direct to our Chairman Jon Vanstone who updates the forum daily and shares relevant thoughts on the latest info from his talks with Government.

5. Extra benefits

We have teamed up with Phoenix Financial Consultants so you can offer your customers more ways to pay, including finance options with rates starting from 0% APR.

Other benefits you get from Certass CPS include free helplines and template document libraries for Legal, Tax, Health and Safety and HR as well as expert technical and fitting advice.

Is Certass the perfect CPS for you?

With a whole range of benefits that support your business, our Competent Persons Scheme is perfect for installers who want more from their certification scheme.

If your CPS let you down during the 2020 pandemic, switch to Certass today.

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Switch to Certass for your CPS

switch to certass

Worker shows house design plans to a young couple outdoors

At Certass, we take a different approach to CPS. We offer common-sense certification and help you get the right information & advice to run your business. Our schemes are designed by tradespeople who know what it is like to run a business and be on the tools. Self-certifying your work becomes part of your everyday working life as an installer, and at Certass we want to make it as easy as possible.

Cost effective self-certification

We understand fitters want value from their Competent Person Scheme, which is why your membership includes an entire package of exclusive benefits. If you fit more than just windows, you can also tailor your certification and add as many scopes as you need.

Our great value membership includes:

  • Free Certass Trade Association membership
  • Free access to our member only Facebook group
  • Access to finance including 0% APR options
  • Free technical & installation advice
  • Free legal, tax, HR and Health & Safety advice
  • First to know about upcoming regulation changes
  • Free* online learning for MTC
  • Free listing on our ‘Find an Installer’ search
  • Free consumer ratings service
  • Free unique company profile page
  • Job registrations from £1.50^
  • Access to all this for just £24.95^ per month

*continuum option only

Our CPS gives you all the tools you need to install with confidence and help you get on with the job.

A fair and flexible approach to certification

Certificates for jobs are distributed digitally and our membership fee is collected monthly, rather than annually, to help with cashflow. Certass membership costs just £24.95^ per month and job registrations are from £1.50^. Extra certification scopes are £5^ (per month per scope) and can cover other work types such as solid roofs, conservatories, roofline and roofing.

To make life even easier for you, you can register each of your jobs on our members IT system when you’re out and about. It lets you see all your information at once as well as giving you the option to bulk-upload your jobs from any device.

Certass Trade Association Membership

Included in your membership, Certass Trade Association gives first-to-market and correct advice for all things that affect your business such as safe working through COVID 19 and Green Homes Grant Scheme information. As well as the COVID secure procedures pack which includes remote selling guidance, Risk Assessments and Method Statement (RAMS) template, fitter/homeowner health declarations & easy checklists. You also get direct Government information, from our trusted Chairman Jon Vanstone and automatic access to our Business Essentials package which includes HR & Tax Information, Health and Safety Guidance and Legal Advice – all to support your business’ success.

Certass says no to big bills at Christmas

It’s getting to that time of the year where another renewal will sneak up on you while you’re taking time out over the holiday season. It’s been a tough year, and most of us could do without a surprise bill in excess of £200. Especially if you don’t feel you are getting the value you need, at that cost. Switching over to Certass means you’ll receive a load of benefits, giving you the value you’ve been missing. You’ll also spread the cost over the year, on a pay-as-you-go monthly fee.

We support local businesses and want them to succeed. It is more important than ever to support local now, and this is why we provide our members with the essential business tools that let them get on with the job.

Say no to big bills this Christmas, get some real value from your certification body – join Certass today

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Join Certass for 2021

Man with a hammer fixing a window

45009140 – construction worker installing new windows in house

It’s time to change to Certass. After a challenging year for the industry, Certass Ltd is urging installers to check they are getting meaningful value from their Competent Persons Scheme, as automated annual renewals for other competency schemes are on the horizon.

Danelle Kaukau, SME Representative at Certass, says: “We take a fair and flexible approach to certification, and 2020 has really proven that what installers need is a certification body and trade association who is on their side and backing them up.

“With the news that COVID restrictions will be in place until Spring, and perhaps even lasting into winter 2021, installers should think back to what support and advice they received from membership bodies throughout lockdown.”

During lockdown, Certass Trade Association, glazing’s largest trade association, launched its comprehensive government-supported ‘COVID Secure Procedures Pack’ and a new Facebook Forum where installers have direct access to Chairman Jon Vanstone. By working collaboratively with installers in this way, Jon can represent SME views in conversations with Government. This meant Certass TA was the first glazing organisation to be listed on the Government’s COVID support website.

“All Certass certification members get free Certass Trade Association membership,” continues Danelle, “because we can give more information and advice as a Trade Association. We promote our installers and help them to promote themselves, with free profile pages and free consumer ratings on the Certass website, generating more than 1,000 ratings per month for members.

“Certificates for jobs are distributed digitally and we offer monthly membership fees rather than annual, to help installers spread costs and help with cashflow.

“We will continue to increase the benefits that Certass members receive, creating a service that adds real value to their business, which in 2021 will include thorough guidance on huge regulation changes and new training schemes to upskill the industry.

“Certass is about giving installers a place to self-certify work, get real-value business support, have their voice heard at Government level and promote their work.

“The role of Competent Persons Schemes changed in 2020 and if your scheme did not step up when you needed them most, it’s time to change.”

Certass membership costs just £24.95+VAT per month with job registrations from £1.50+VAT.

Free Technical Training from Certass

Certass is skilling up the industry with the launch of its new Glazing Competency Portal. Certass MTC Continuum Card Holders can give their installers and site operatives free access to bite-size training sessions where they can top up their technical knowledge and prove their competency with certificates and award badges.

Jason Clemmit, Managing Director at Certass Ltd, says: “Certass has always been committed to providing the latest technical support for members with our best practice guides, info and help from our technical advisors. These new bite-size training packages extend this support, giving site operatives an easy way to demonstrate their competency, without taking time away from site.”

The Glazing Competency Portal is initially being launched with 8 free courses, ranging from COVID Secure working practices to Building Regulations. All the courses are supported by easy-to-digest technical guides. More courses will be made available on an ongoing basis.

Jason continues: “The skills gap is a big issue for our sector, and this new portal is providing the right technical knowledge for installers, through quick and easy learning, that can be done online whenever is convenient for them.

“This is the first phase of a training package we are building to support our membership and raise standards across the industry. All courses will be digital, so that information can be kept up-to-date with all the regulation changes which are coming in 2021. It puts Certass members ahead of the game.”

Certass has developed the Glazing Competency Portal in conjunction with SSID Awarding, the OFQUAL-Approved awarding organisation, to ensure that all courses meet the qualification criteria. The bite-size courses give installers an easy route to demonstrate their technical knowledge if they want to go on to gain a regulated qualification.

Jason adds: “We know that SSID Awarding will shortly be launching a range of innovative, regulated qualifications, specifically for our sector, that will genuinely raise competency standards across the industry. Certass and Certass Trade Association have been working to ensure courses in the Glazing Competency Portal mesh to the SSID Awarding qualification structure.”

The Glazing Competency Portal is available for free to MTC Continuum Members.

Green Homes Grant Update

The latest news in the Green Homes Grant (GHG) is that there is little change for replacement windows, as we predicted openly in our members forum on social media. We were 99 percent sure this would be the outcome, as the indications in conversations we had been having with Government was looking like grant money would only be available for single glazed windows.

There is still an opportunity with energy efficient entrance doors, but this too could be slim pickings as it is a secondary measure, and proof of insulation is likely to be required before this will be eligible.

However, there is no reason to be negative about this. We now have our knees under the table at these meetings, and it’s likely that the next tranches of grant money will be more favourable to the glazing sector if we continue to position ourselves correctly.

For many years, the industry has not been represented in cross trade talks. That is because previous contact with Government had removed glazing from involvement with bodies such as the Construction Leadership Council on the basis that glazing was not part of construction. This may have saved some large glazing businesses from paying into CITB levy, but it has left us somewhat isolated and away from many funded skills initiatives.

Of course, this meant every battle had to be fought against the other trades, rather than as a construction collective. Since I have been at Certass Trade Association, I have spent a lot of my energy building the relationships with other heads of trade organisations to get us seen as part of the construction group by Government. These were long term measures, and we can see that they are starting to take effect. We were included by Government in discussions around COVID-19 and GHG, and this looks like it will bring us closer into future conversations and consultations.

Less than 3 percent of homes in England gain from the GHG, and that leaves 97 percent of homes available for the next initiative. Discussions are already happening, and we are part of those. Nothing concrete has been decided, but the fact we are part of the discussion is a big step forward.

At Certass TA, we knew through early stages of coronavirus that any knee jerk reactions would cause members more hardship and extra cost, at a time they when they could ill afford it. Government changes were coming thick and fast, so when we interpreted Government guidance, we aimed to give it a measured and thoughtful response. Where we needed further clarification, we sought it out directly with Government ministers and civil servants to ensure the information given to members was the best it could be. It worked, in hindsight our predictions have been shown to be correct and our members given the right advice at the right time.

Certass TA is backing the industry, we see that being part of conversations will mean bigger benefits to everyone in glazing, and while GHG has been an unnecessary distraction for many companies, collectively we are likely to reap bigger and better rewards in the future.

Yours sincerely,

Jon Vanstone

Chairman Certass Trade Association

Certass Backs Trustmark’s Campaign to Boost Recovery

Certass is backing the new ‘Work Safe. Safe Work’ campaign launched by TrustMark, to help boost the recovery of the construction and home improvement sector.

Supported by the Construction Leadership Council, the ‘Work Safe. Safe Work’ goal is for homeowners and tradespeople to work together to ensure that everyone is kept safe whilst any works are being undertaken in the home.

Chairman at Certass, Jon Vanstone says: “As lockdown restrictions ease, more homeowners are having worked carried out at home and this is vital for the recovery of our sector. ‘Work Safe. Safe Work’ is a great campaign that will bring real clarity and confidence to homeowners who are ready to have home improvements carried out.”

TrustMark is the Government-endorsed consumer protection scheme and this campaign has been developed in partnership with the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

Jon continues: “Certass is a TrustMark Scheme operator, giving members a rapid route to membership. It is a strong brand for businesses to be associated with, as it is the only government-endorsed quality mark for tradespeople and offers real, robust protection for consumers. That’s why membership is so important to Certass.

“All of the ‘Work Safe. Safe Work’ collateral is free to download for all installers. There is a video, website and social media content available as well as a leaflet outlining the responsibilities for both parties, when work is carried out.

“It’s good to see the number of similarities between the ‘Work Safe. Safe Work’ campaign and the Certass Trade Association’s ‘Working Safely in your Home’ consumer guide, which we have had great feedback on from our members. Now they have extra resources to help promote their safe working practices, so that their customers can have real confidence in their installer’s commitment to keeping their family safe.”

If you want to read more here’s our PDF Guide

Open Letter from Jon Vanstone to Alok Sharma Re: Green Homes Grant Scheme

9th July 2020

Dear Mr Sharma,

Including Glazing installations as Primary Measure for Green Homes Grant Scheme

I am writing to you as Chair of Certass Trade Association, the leading representative body of thousands of local glazing installers throughout the UK.

The recent announcement on 8th July has, unfortunately, had the unintentional consequence of damaging the glazing industry as it gives false hope to consumers of being able to acquire glazing work in September through a funded programme.

This has already led to a huge number of job cancellations as consumers wait for Government updates to see if they are eligible for the support. Before the announcement, the glazing industry was bouncing back successfully, both with installations that had been postponed during lockdown and new business.

I would like to ask for immediate clarity on the Green Homes Grant Scheme as regards the position of glazing. I suggest that the most appropriate position is to include glazing as a primary measure for the scheme and to enable the backdating of funds to consumers with immediate effect.

This would result in immediately unlocking the industry-wide problem created by the recent government announcement, create a huge positive in the energy profile of housing stock in the UK and deliver massive benefits in consumer spending for the economy.

Glazing replacement does not deliver the highest level of impact on CO2 emissions but has huge advantages in that it is available to any property in the UK and has an industry active infrastructure level that enables immediate delivery through established SMEs and local micro businesses. Replacement windows and doors also provide significant improvement benefits to homeowners and occupiers.

The success of previous grant initiatives for wall insulation means that many of the remaining uninsulated homes fall into the harder to treat category. Therefore, the most likely primary measure pathway for the fund, as currently detailed, is the installation of External Wall Insulation (EWI).

There are currently not enough trained people to survey, co-ordinate or install EWI to the required standards, and given the housing stock in the UK, the Government is unlikely to achieve its goals through insulation alone.

In comparison, the glazing industry already has the infrastructure in place that can deliver an immediate positive impact. Glazing presents an opportunity to deliver on Government’s energy promise, support an industry that will protect existing and create new jobs and bolster the UK economy. It’s also pertinent to point out that the vast majority of windows and doors are manufactured in UK factories, strengthening jobs further up the supply chain.

The impact of the 2013 Green Deal suggests that the method of focusing on the potential gains offered by the existing primary measures is unlikely to succeed in securing and creating long-term jobs or improving the housing stock.

Glazing has considerable advantages to the UK Government if enabled as a primary method for your Green Homes Grant Scheme, in that the infrastructure is already there in the market at a local level to deliver the benefits of improved energy efficiency, comfort and home value.

Such a programme could revitalise our sector whilst also helping Government deliver on its promises. The glazing industry is dominated by SME businesses, who whilst reasonably supported by Government intervention during COVID-19, are now in a position of considerable instability. Though for many, the bounce back has been relatively successful, there is uncertainty as to how long this success will last and the impact of yesterday’s announcement is stalling homeowners and will affect businesses and jobs.

Time is of the essence for the glazing industry due to the unintended handbrake applied by recent Government announcements. However, glazing can be your vehicle for achieving your aims if September funding can include glazing as a primary measure and be backdated to July so UK consumers will continue to upgrade their homes.

In addition, the coverage on the Martin Lewis Money Show this evening during which he told consumers to hold off buying double glazing until September has basically put the entire industry on hold as it has been picked up across UK media.

If the current position is not rectified urgently, the damage to the sector will be considerable as regards job losses and company closures, due to the lack of financial coverage for businesses that COVID-19 caused and the impact from the announcements and media coverage this week.

Yours faithfully,

Jon Vanstone

Chair, Certass Trade Association

COVID Secure Procedures Pack Launched for Certass Members

Certass Trade Association has launched the COVID Secure Procedures Pack for installers. Endorsed by the Trade Association Forum (TAF), which is supported by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), the pack has been developed with Government to give installers the confidence to install safely in occupied homes as lockdown is lifted.

Jon Vanstone, Chair at Certass Trade Association, says: “We are going to be living and working with this virus in the UK for at least the next 12 months. Through my participation in Government steering groups, it was clear that the delivery of advice for installers needed to be driven by industry. As the only glazing representative in these discussions, responsibility fell to Certass Trade Association.”

Available to all Certass members, the document outlines the best practice procedures for how installers can keep their teams and customers safe as the industry can return to installing non-essential windows and doors in occupied homes.

The Certass TA COVID Secure Procedures Pack includes a full method statement for working safely in the home, with specific advice for surveyors and installers, remote selling and showroom guidance, self-assessment declaration forms for both installation teams and homeowners to complete before work commences and final inspection guidance. There is also a quick reference guide for installers and an information leaflet to give to homeowners. A complete homeowner guide for members to use in their marketing will follow next week.

Jon adds: “The pack is designed to help installers maintain social distancing, keep contact with homeowners to a minimum and prove that they have taken necessary steps to reduce risk for all parties.

“We have stayed in close contact with installers and trade fabricators during the lockdown period and the overriding request was for clear, practical help and information that will help them get their business back to work. This is what we have delivered.”

Members can access the pack via the Certass members area.

Open Letter from our Chairman

29 April 2020

Re: Government Updates

Dear all,

I know statements about ‘talking to Government’ can be met with scepticism from the industry. It’s not just about listening to what Government has to say, but also feeding back what we, as an industry are thinking. Over the last few days, I feel good progress has been made and there are results that are worth reporting.

This week I was invited to the ‘Working in People’s Homes (tradespersons)’ Group by Alok Sharma, Secretary of State for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, where I have been able to voice concerns from the glazing industry directly to him.

This included the fact that a lot of advice given is only relevant to large businesses, and not the SMEs that make up 95 percent of our industry. We also discussed how we can make guidance easier to understand by using simplified terms, graphic content and pointed out the fact that any liability is a two-way street between installers and consumers.

Through other discussions with Government ministers, we have now gained real clarity on the difference between ‘construction’ and ‘tradespeople working in people’s homes’ which is outlined on gov.uk. Note the wording in this statement – ‘essential repairs and maintenance’ – this is in line with the advice that Certass has given to members, to protect themselves and their customers.

We have tabled further specific questions to Government so we can advise installers who are still working as to what is acceptable during lockdown and most importantly, we are working with Government on guidelines we can make available to installers as we start to return to work.

When we come out of lockdown, life is likely to be disrupted for a long period of time and as a Nation, we are going to need to adapt to this ‘new normal’. In preparation for members to return to installing windows and doors, a pack of practical advice has been created to support members to protect themselves and their customers. This will be checked by Government before release, so installers can rely on the best practice guidance we give.

We don’t expect our members to interpret what Government is saying, that’s our job and a key part of the Certass Trade Association pledge to represent the local tradesperson’s view at Government level. The real value is being proven at the moment, as this feedback offered from industry is driving action and Government guidance.

Yours faithfully,

Jon Vanstone

Chair, Certass Trade Association

Direct Line to Government

Certass Trade Association is supporting members through the COVID-19 situation via its new Certass Members Forum on Facebook. Set up to give members the latest advice and information on how any Government announcements affect them, it is proving popular as a place for discussion between installers, as well as giving members a direct line to Government via its Chair, Jon Vanstone.

Jon explains: “A forum like this is the most practical way to get immediate information to our members. And with the ever-changing situation at the moment, that is crucial. Updates I receive daily from Government can be posted in real-time and it gives members the opportunity to ask myself and the Certass team questions direct.

“It also means that I can feedback our industry’s concerns to Government, which is essential for their decision making.

“The forum is a busy hub of activity and we would encourage all members to join so they can receive the latest updates as they happen. We are expecting more announcements over the coming days in terms of how the lockdown rules will affect installation companies going forward. We have already issued guides on the self-employment income support scheme and practical guidance for employers.

“Any questions we can’t answer straight away are asked of Government direct, so that we have as much clarity as possible for members during this difficult time.

“For any trade association at the moment, the focus should be on delivering good, clear information to keep its members and their customers safe. This means avoiding any misinterpretation of Government guidance which could put installers and homeowners at risk.

“Currently, we are seeking clarification between ‘construction’ workers and installers carrying out home improvements – they are very different working environments and as such, the guidance should be very different too.

“To ensure that members are setting the agenda, we’re running a poll every week to ask members what they need from us and the Certass team is available to answer questions direct.”

Certass members can click here to join the group.

Client Focus: Belonging to Certass is never a PANE for this sash window manufacturer and installer…

We always love hearing how our members are reaping the benefits of the Certass brand.  This London based sash window company tells us how their business has flourished since joining the Certass family fold…

Door Installation By Wandsworth Sash Windows

Having previously been members of another government authorised scheme for many years, we decided to switch our company, Wandsworth Sash Windows over to Certass a few years ago.  We officially became members of the Certass Competent Person Scheme (CPS) in August 2017.  This essentially means that Certass have inspected our team of installers and surveyors to ensure they are competent in their work and have certified that our team meet the high standards held by Certass.

Why did we choose Certass?

When it comes to finding the right tradesperson for a project, whether commercial or domestic, trust is king and being recognised by a well-known and respected trade body is a fantastic endorsement and privilege.  It helps us show our customers that our company and its products, services and standards are held in high regard.  Customers can also feel rest assured that the work we complete for them will be officially certified, a must-have requirement if they are planning to sell their property at some point in the future.

Window Installation By Door Installation By Wandsworth Sash Windows

We specifically chose to switch to Certass due to their efficiency in issuing customer certificates, something that the previous scheme we belonged to was not very quick at doing.  It is often the case that customers lose their original certificates and only realise they need it when they are selling their property, at which point they need it ASAP.  If certificates are slow at being issued it causes numerous calls from customers chasing them up that we waste precious time contending with.  Certass are also excellent at helping customers with queries after installation which in this day and age is priceless for businesses.

The Certass logo is on all of our letterheads, published materials and website which immediately puts customers at ease when they receive a quote from us through the post, read one of our brochures or browse our company online. It’s not just customers that are assured by the Certass brand either, architects and other trades that have dealt with Certass previously and found them helpful are assured by our certification and are therefore confident when recommending us to their clients.

Window Installation By Door Installation By Wandsworth Sash Windows Van

Wandsworth Sash Windows are now working towards becoming registered members of the Certass CQ-Assured Workmanship Scheme, as well as working towards being certified under the Certass Thermal Ratings Register (TRR) as a fabricator.

 

Author:  Nathan Smith, Director
Wandsworth Sash Windows, London

 

How to supercharge your business with Certass’ Competent Person Scheme

Certass Competent Person Scheme

Being a member of a Competent Person Scheme (CPS) is essential for every sensible installer. Self-certifying installations becomes part and parcel of everyday working life, and Competent Person Schemes help you to get the job done.

So, we want to ask you…

What do you get from your Competent Person Scheme?

For many, it serves its purpose. It’s a membership that is required to help you function as a quality, reliable installer. You pay the monthly fees for a simple, straightforward membership, and that’s where the service stops.

At Certass, we take a different approach to CPS. Ours is designed by tradespeople, for tradespeople, offering you more than just a simple membership.

With Certass you get…

A whole package of benefits for your installation company – all for free.

We make sure that you get more out of your Competent Person Scheme membership, so you receive the very best scheme, while receiving a whole host of extras.

These benefits include:

  • Free listing on our ‘Find an Installer’ search for homeowners
  • Free consumer ratings service
  • Free Certass Trade Association membership
  • Free unique company profile page
  • Free personalised Certass and Certass TA logos
  • Free Joblogic software package licence
  • Free legal, tax, HR and health & safety advice
  • Free technical and installation advice

We have the tools for installers

With a complete package of free benefits, our CPS gives you the tools you need to install with confidence and grow your business.

Membership to the Certass Trade Association

The Certass Trade Association acts as your voice in the industry and is there to provide you with added help, advice and guidance as an installer.

With your free membership, you will receive free access to legal, tax, HR and health & safety advice through the business support package, along with up-to-date industry information, training and technical support.

A digital toolkit

We have a toolkit of free, practical online services designed to help you create a professional online presence without any hassle. Together, these tools form part of our Digital Support Package and include a unique company profile page, option to receive customer ratings & reviews and personalised Certass and Certass TA logos.

We’ve also teamed up with Joblogic to help your business to operate digitally, with a free software package licence. It’s a full-service project management system that helps to make receiving payments from your customers even easier.

Member’s IT System

To make self-certifying your installations easier, you can register each job on our Member’s IT System when you’re out and about. It lets you see all your information at once as well as the option to bulk-upload your jobs from your own database.

Multi-trade certification

We know that for many installers, you need certification that covers more than just windows and doors.

Lots of installers cover installation work across multiple trades, such as fitting conservatories and roofline. For this, we have the CQ-Assured Scheme that’s designed to give your customers the confidence when choosing you to complete jobs in these areas.

This scheme includes added benefits including free TrustMark membership, low-cost public-liability & business insurance, and access to finance from one of the UK’s leading home improvement finance providers.

Power up your business with Certass now

We’re coming to the time of year when your Competent Person Scheme needs renewing. We know just how easy it is to let your CPS auto-renew, however you could be missing out on a load of extra benefits, along with a toolkit of support that could supercharge your business.

We can help you power up your business and transfer your existing CPS, fast. It’s super simple to switch to Certass.

The process begins with completing a simple online form, and once we receive the paperwork, you will be able to register your installations with us in as little as 48 hours. Then, completed jobs are certified as soon as your on-site audit is signed off.

Our Certass Competent Person Scheme membership costs just £24.95 plus VAT per month, with no joining fees, and our job registrations start from just £1.50 plus VAT too.

If you would like to supercharge your business and switch to our Competent Person Scheme, get in touch with us!

You can contact our friendly, helpful team for new business enquiries by calling 01292 292 095 or emailing [email protected].

Supercharge Your Business with Certass

More Payment Options For Homeowners With CERTASS Software

Common sense certification body, Certass, has launched an exclusive new software package for members so they can offer more payment options to homeowners.

The complete, easy quote, project management system can be used by Certass installers to price up jobs and send detailed quotations to homeowners. On this quote, customers will be shown options for payment that include a finance option for homeowners. It’s designed to make quoting and getting paid even easier for installation companies.

Jon Vanstone, Chair at Certass Ltd & Certass Trade Association explains: “From talking to our members, we knew that even though offering finance is a big benefit for many installers, there were a lot of barriers and red tape when they tried to provide finance options for homeowners.

“This system gives installers an easy, straightforward way for customers to be able to choose how they pay, whether that be by cash, card or finance.  It reduces regulatory burden as installers will not be acting as credit brokers. The finance offers are generated within the system once the appropriate criteria is met. Installers don’t need to get involved with paperwork or apply or pay for a consumer credit license; this is all covered within the software package.”

Through the platform, Certass members can present professional quotes, store and manage jobs and keep on top of paperwork – an extra free benefit which saves time and keeps everything organised. It also helps members to digitise their business and deliver a true end to end service for homeowners.

Jon adds: “To get paid, Certass members win the job, fit the products to the high standards that homeowners expect from our members and get consumer sign-off.”

More than 3,000 homeowners really rate Certass Installers

Expert certification body, Certass, has received outstanding feedback for members with its new online rating system. Since launching in November, there have been more than 3000 reviews, and the rate is increasing by the minute.

Designed to bring even more digital support to Certass members, the free ‘Rate Your Installer’ service provides consumers the chance to leave honest reviews about Certass members online.

The system acts as a platform where members can receive genuine feedback from their customers on the work that they have completed. Thousands of homeowners visit the Certass website searching for information on installers or leaving reviews.

Jason Clemmit, Managing Director at Certass says: “Our online rating system is proving really popular amongst homeowners. Within hours of its launch, we had dozens of ratings from consumers who were leaving such positive feedback about our members.

“There are lots of popular online rating websites that allow anyone to leave feedback, which can often lead to unfair reviews. The Certass ‘Rate Your Installer’ service only permits reviews on jobs which have been finished and registered with Certass.”

All Certass members can add a company bio and have the option to opt-in to the free online rating system. Members are scored by their customers on a range of attributes, including their service, tidiness, reliability & timekeeping, workmanship standards and product suitability. Consumers can leave any additional comments too, which are great for members to use on their own website, social media profiles and marketing resources.

Jason adds: “It’s a valuable, free way for installers to show consumers what a great job that they do. The service builds on our free digital support package for members which helps them to build a professional online presence.”

Certass CQ-Scotland: the certification scheme designed for Scottish installers

Certass CQ-Scotland: the certification scheme designed for Scottish installers

Across the home improvement market, there has been a real shift towards quality. A revival of craftsmanship and authenticity has taken centre stage and homeowners place real value in skilled and trusted tradespeople who they know they can rely on to complete work on their homes.

This is matched with building work regulations and Codes of Practice that have been designed to set the standard for all workmanship, such as glazing, roofing, joinery and insulation.

Building Standards in Scotland

In Scotland, building work that you carry out must meet building standards, ensuring that the properties you work on are safe, structurally sound, energy efficient and sustainable – to name a few. These essentials should always be met for building repair, maintenance and improvement work across Scotland.

While these standards must be conformed to, there’s a real emphasis on competent workmanship too. Focusing on ensuring that you, as a tradesperson, have the right skills and quality products to do a great job. Homeowners look for people who are competent to complete work on their home. We know this because we have hundreds of homeowners each month who search our website looking for information on how to find a competent installer.

CQ-Scotland is a workmanship certification scheme that certifies your home improvements and building work. It is a scheme designed with installers and builders in mind. It helps to assure your customers that industry standards have been met and your skills have been assessed. Giving homeowners added peace of mind, along with the confidence that the job will be done right.

CQ-Assured, giving your customers the confidence in what you do

The CQ-Scotland Scheme is a quality mark for your windows, doors and home improvements work. It’s an all-encompassing certification scheme that can cover your workmanship for up to 13 different building trades, including window and door replacements, to constructing conservatories and extensions, tiling and solid roof replacements.

CQ-Scotland helps you to prove to homeowners in Scotland that your workmanship meets industry standards, and as a Certass CQ member, your work is backed by TrustMark’s 3 cornerstones of quality, representing good trading practices, customer service and technical competence.

We complete an initial contractor assessment, an assessment of supervisors and carry out ongoing on-site assessments, so that you can self-certify that your workmanship meets and exceeds building standards and codes of practice too.

The Certass Toolkit

CQ-Scotland is designed to be as accessible and affordable as possible. Membership costs start at £24.95 per month + VAT, with extra scopes costing £5 each, and there is access to a toolkit of advantages to help you show your competency to homeowners.

Digital Support Package

As a Certass member, you get free digital support. This includes your own member profile on our consumer online directory. This works as a truly effective way to help homeowners search for certified installers. The profile gives your company details, an online bio and the chance for your customers to leave you ratings and reviews. You will also receive a unique logo with your membership numbers displayed.

Common sense certification

The CQ-Scotland Scheme allows you to self-certify that your work meets workmanship standards, and you will be issued with a Certificate of Conformity (COC). This helps to set you apart from competition and adds real value to your home improvements work, offering extra peace of mind for your customers.

Workmanship warranty

With each installation you log under the scheme, and once your Certificate of Conformity has been issued, we pass the data over to your approved insurance provider, where you will receive a minimum 2-year insurance backed workmanship warranty. This gives your customer protection on the work you complete – a great benefit to offer homeowners.

Dispute resolution

We know that things sometimes do go wrong, even for the best contractors. That’s why we provide free access to an alternative dispute resolution service, to provide you with reassurance in the rare instances where you may need extra support.

Becoming a Certass CQ-Scotland member

It’s really simple to become a member of the CQ-Assured Scheme in Scotland. You can register on our website via our online registration form, or you can call Simon, our CQ-Assured whiz, on 07977 430 438.

Get online installer support with the Certass Digital Support Package

As a member of Certass, we pledge to offer you all the installer support and practical solutions to promote your business. That’s why we have created our Digital Support Package. A complete toolkit of free, practical online tools that will help make a real difference. And, if your business is not already online, we want to help you make the jump even easier.

The Digital Support Package is designed to help you create a professional online presence, easily. It comprises of an online bio, a customer ratings service and unique dynamic logos, all helping you to give your customers the confidence to choose you.

We’ve outlined the digital support you get as a Certass member below:

A unique online profile

Your free, online bio is a huge part of our online installer support and can generate more enquiries for you. As a Certass member, you will be given a profile on our consumer online directory. This allows consumers to search for their local Certass member, find your business and learn more about your company.

This is perfect if you don’t already have a website. It creates an online presence for you, that your customers can visit to get your contact information easily and see the details of your Certass membership. The profile contains:

✓ Address and contact details

✓ Company bio

✓ Links to website and social media

✓ Upload photos

✓ Member ratings

Your online profile also contains information on your Certass membership, including your unique Certass number and the status of your membership, so that homeowners can see that you are still registered with us.

If you’ve not seen our online consumer directory before, have a browse here.

Get leads

The Certass online directory is a great lead generation tool that’s promoted to homeowners across the country. It effectively helps you get leads from prospective customers by acting as a reliable and trusted directory with a simple-to-use search function.

Homeowners can easily find local installers by searching a postcode, or they can find out more information on your business by searching your company name or unique Certass number.

Dynamic Certass logos

To accompany our installer support, we provide you with unique, personalised dynamic logos that confirm your Certass and Certass Trade Association membership.

The logos display your membership details and unique Certass member number, proving your certifications while giving your customers an added layer of confidence when choosing you for their home improvements.

Your dynamic Certass logo is yours to use however you like. We suggest displaying it on your website, on your social media pages, your email footer and on your quotes.

Member ratings system

Our member ratings system acts as a platform where you can receive genuine, verified feedback from your customers on work that you have completed.

Lots of popular online rating websites allow anyone to leave feedback, which can lead to unfair and false reviews. They can also be costly for small businesses.

Our system works by allowing your customers to leave feedback upon completion and registration of an installation. All you need to do is provide your customer’s email address when you log any work with us under your Certass certification scheme.

Your customer will then be emailed a ratings form to complete prior to receiving their Certass Compliance Certificate. You will be scored by your customers on service, reliability & timekeeping, tidiness, workmanship standards and product suitability. If a customer email address is supplied, every job registered with us is eligible to leave feedback.

Your ratings will then be displayed on your online profile and you will receive a notification when you have new review, along with any additional comments, so that you can use your ratings across social media platforms, your website and any other marketing resources. We also share your rating comments with you on our social media pages.

To find out more information about our Digital Support Package, and the other great benefits of being a Certass member, get in touch with us via email at [email protected], or click here for our contact details.

Jon Vanstone to lead the debate at FIT Show

Jon Vanstone from Certass, speaking at the Everglade Conference

Jon Vanstone has been announced as the compère for the FIT Theatre on day two of FIT Show 2019, as well as delivering a seminar on competency in the glazing industry.

As Chair of Certass Ltd, Certass Trade Association, Competent Persons Forum (CPF), Trade Association Forum (TAF) and Delivery Director of RoofCERT, Jon is in a unique position and has an overview of the general construction industry, as well as the glazing sector.

Jon will be hosting the Fit Theatre for the entire day on Wednesday 22 May and his seminar session ‘Building Competence: What the glazing world can learn from other areas of construction will be delivered on Wednesday 22 May at 2.15pm, ahead of Skills Thursday.

Jon explains: “It’s a privilege to be asked to lead the debate for a day at FIT Show 2019, especially as the conversation around skills and competency is finally being noticed in the industry.

“At my seminar, I’ll be talking about the ways in which sectors such as roofing are developing a skilled workforce and a better relationship with consumers to enhance perception as a trusted trade. It’s a great talking point for the glazing industry, as we can learn a lot from the successes in other sectors.”

Jon will also feature on the seminar programme as part of a panel debate on how the industry works collaboratively to change perceptions on Thursday 21 May. When Jon isn’t on stage, visitors can find him on the Certass Stand D29 in Hall 20, near the FIT Theatre.

Certass Digital Support Package Helps Installers get Online

Delivering on its promise for tangible member benefits, Certass has launched its Digital Support Package for members to help them go digital, get ratings from their customers and prove their professionalism.

Jason Clemmit, Managing Director at Certass explains: “Members have been asking us to help them promote their businesses and as we have pledged to support them with practical business tools, it made sense to create a package that could help make a real difference.

“More than 70 percent of local installers still don’t have a website, but Certass members can now create their free member profile on certass.co.uk. They can upload images, create a company bio and link to their social media pages from here, so when homeowners search for a glazing installer, it’s easy for them to find out more about them.

“It also shows the status of their Certass membership, so homeowners can check that they are still registered with us. For extra peace of mind, we’ve added a ratings section too. Installers can give their customers a link, so they can get genuine, helpful ratings.”

Through the new Certass member ratings system, installers are scored by their customers on service, reliability & timekeeping, tidiness, workmanship standards and product suitability. The ratings are then displayed on each member profile. Installers receive a notification when a review has been completed, along with any additional comments so they can be used on social media and marketing resources.

Jason adds: “As an extra, every Certass member now has a personalised, dynamic Certass and Certass Trade Association member logo featuring their member number, proving their membership to homeowners. They can display this on their website, social media pages or add it as a footer to their email quotes.”

Certass members can create their free profile through the members area online.