Are you wondering how to leverage your Certified Tile Installer (CTI) status in your business? This well-earned professional distinction offers tile installation professionals many benefits as Mark Heinlein, National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA) Technical Trainer and Presenter and CTI #1112, explains in this article.
Mark Heinlein's 5 Benefits of Being a Certified Tile Installer
1. A Certified Installer is Qualified Labor
As you well know, becoming a Certified Tile Installer is not exactly easy, nor should it be. The test is designed for an experienced installer who puts him or herself to a test of their knowledge, skill, experience, time management, and all of the traits needed to produce high-quality, long-lasting, successful installations using United States Tile Industry standards and methods along with time-tested proven best practices.
>> See Tile Installation Certification in Action>> See What's the Certified Tile Installer Program?
You will be able to leverage the distinction of being Qualified Labor and a CTI by explaining to potential clients about the certification and telling them what you went through to achieve it.
- Tell them that you have passed a rigorous examination of your knowledge and skills.
- You are certified by the tile industry’s most highly regarded 3rd party organization (CTEF).
- You are now considered by the United States Tile Industry to be Qualified Labor.
Specifications are being written every day that require contractors who have proven they are qualified labor. A CTI meets this requirement; this makes you eligible to bid and win high-quality contracts.
2. Qualified Labor Uses Only Appropriate Tile Installation Methods
Be sure to highlight that you own and use the following two critical references for installing tile:
- The TCNA Handbook for Ceramic, Glass, and Stone Tile Installation
- The American National Standard Specifications for the Installation of Ceramic Tile also called the ANSI standards
As a result, you will construct every aspect of your installations using the appropriate methods and details outlined by those standards.
3. Qualified Tile Professionals Educate Potential Clients
In your written proposals, be sure to include the methods and details you will use in each aspect of your tile installation. This educates potential clients and helps them appreciate the benefits of working with a qualified tile installation professional.
Educate your clients, explain the details and intricacies of a successful tile installation, and why every aspect behind or under the installation matters so much. CTIs understand these aspects and base their installations on quality construction.
>> See Why Do You Need Expansion Joints When Installing Tile?
>> See Why You Need to Eliminate Spot Bonding When Installing Ceramic Tile
This in turn means that their hard-earned money and their time will be best invested in you because the end results you will produce for them will be just what they want, will be beautiful, and will stand the test of time.>> See The Top Ten Requirements for a Quality Tile Installation
>> See Why Ceramic Tile Installation Certification (and show your potential clients, too)
4. Be Sure to Flaunt Your Tile Installation Certification!
You've worked hard to become a Certified Tile Installer. Your concern for your own professionalism brings the best possible results to your customers.
- Get your distinction noticed and point it out to your customers by adding the CTI logos to your proposals and business cards. Include it in your advertising, on your vehicles, hats, and work shirts.
- Add the CTI logo to your website with a link back to the CTEF website to validate your achievement online.
- Include your CTI# number on your LinkedIn profile, your Facebook page, your Google My Business profile, Houzz profile, Angie's List listing, and anywhere else potential clients might discover you.
If your potential clients are interviewing other installers or contractors, make certain they know what Qualified Labor is. Inform them why it is important to choose you because you have taken the initiative to prove that you are concerned with being the highest quality professional you can be.
Tell other tile contractors about the CTI program and encourage them to challenge themselves to become certified. More qualified installers produce more quality installations which mean higher income for the installer.
5. CTIs Stay in the Know About Tile Industry Developments
Qualified tile installers are proud to stay "in the know" and aware of the changes in the tile industry so they always deliver quality tile installations to their clients.
Three Additional Benefits Associated with Being a CTI from the CTEF Blog Team
1. Be Found by Pre-Qualified Customers on the CTEF Website.
John Roberts CTI #1278 shares the following benefit:
By passing your test, you will be listed, with your contact info, on the CTEF website, which lists all CTIs by their location.
He has gotten 3 jobs from the CTEF listing, where someone did their research, only wanted the best, and was willing to pay a premium on their installation.
2. Get Paid for the Quality You Provide on Each Tile Installation Project
John’s comment brings up another benefit that many CTIs have discovered: they can charge a premium for their work over non-CTIs because of all the benefits Mark points out. As a CTI, you are Qualified Labor, you stay in the know about industry developments, you only use appropriate tile installation methods, and you educate your clients.
Now, this does assume that, as the installers in Global Tile Posse regularly say, you #ownit. You take your work seriously and your reputation as Qualified Labor even more seriously. You can be counted on to always do what’s right.
3. Become a Part of Training New, Young Aspiring Installers.
Without young new blood coming onboard the tile installer team, high-quality tile installation will falter.
We must help educate and mentor the next generation on the standards and methods better quality installers use every day and don’t even need to think about them in this process. Encourage these folks who are new to the tile industry and support them in their quest for more information and training.
Guide them to the NTCA University Apprenticeship Program to help them get started. Better yet, take one of them under your wing and lead them down the right path of installation.
Final Advice: Become an NTCA Member
Mark also suggests becoming a member of the National Tile Contractors Association and tapping into the resources the NTCA offers its members. He says,
"You will be connected to the tile industry at the highest levels. Plug yourself into the benefits of education, training, cost savings, technical support, and industry-standard updates. You will receive the NTCA Reference Manual as well as manufacturer vouchers both of which will earn you money."
Thank you, Mark!
If you are a CTI, what would you add to Mark Heinlein's list of Certified Tile Installer benefits?
Note: We originally published this article on August 23, 2016, and have updated it.