INSTALL Questions & Answers

Q : What is ?

A : represents the floor covering industry's most comprehensive training program for residential, commercial, and institutional floor covering installers throughout the United States and Canada. "" is an acronym for the International Standards and Training Alliance.

Q : What makes different from other programs?

A : Several things. First, an certified professional must complete a three year (Canada) or four-year (USA) apprenticeship program in floor covering that includes both classroom and on-the-job training. Second, the curriculum for is not only endorsed by industry leaders, but also is a product of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters (UBC) in partnership with technical and educational representatives from major mills and manufacturers throughout North America. Third, not only meets industry standards, it is setting them. Clearly, the curriculum is the best multi year, industry endorsed program of its kind in the world.

Q : What does the curriculum include?

A : The content of this multi-year training program includes theory and practice of proper floor preparation, installation, and finishing procedures for carpet, linoleum, vinyl and other resilients, hardwoods, laminate, artificial turf and sports surfaces, and other accessories.

Q : Isn't a multi-year floor covering installation program overkill?

A : No. It is essential because of the rigorous nature of the training. has established industry-wide standards that each apprentice must master. These standards include fundamental, core installer skills, graduated levels of skill competence and experience; written proof of theoretical knowledge; and hands-on skill testing. Standards also include external educational accreditation of trainers and trainees. Only after completing the multi year program can graduates join the ranks of the 13,000+ UBC floor covering professionals working in Canada and the United States.

Q : What is the benefit of that level of comprehensive training?

A : professionals can efficiently install any kind of floor, in any configuration, for residential, commercial, and institutional settings. Work is done right the first time, which saves time and money for the contractor.

Q : Who created ?

A : A special international floorcovering labour-management committee of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America worked with Joint Apprenticeship Training Committees (JATC) to create the curriculum. These committees which represent both floor covering contractors and mechanics also worked in partnership with industry leaders. This includes Armstrong, Johnsonite, Milliken, Orcon, Pergo, and Shaw, to make sure that what is taught reflects current labour needs in the floor covering industry.

Today, standards are certified by the Labour Departments of both the Canadian and United States governments, and have become the industry standard for training professional floor coverers.

Q : Why was created?

A : was created to address the growing shortage of qualified labour in the floor covering industry, which caused rising installation failures and unprecedented levels of customer callbacks. These problems translate into use of more materials and more repairs. This situation was hurting the floor covering industry, and together, we wanted to do something about it.

Q : How many UBC floor covering professionals are there?

A : More than 13,000 floor covering professionals are working in Canada and the United States. Those numbers will grow as apprentices complete their training.

Q : How many training centres are there?

A : There are 25 training sites throughout North America that provide 's standardized, quality training - 24 sites throughout Canada and the United States and a 178,000 square foot International Training Centre in Las Vegas. Each site reflects curriculum, standards, quality, and professionalism.

Q : How are instructors trained?

A : instructors remain on the cutting edge of emerging technology, through the "train-the-trainers" program at the Las Vegas Training Centre. There, our nearly 100 floor covering instructors receive the training and gain the knowledge they need to take state-of-the-art training back to their regions.

Q : Why is standardized training important?

A : Consistent training leads to consistent work - the kind of work that manufacturers, contractors, and consumers can depend on. We can deliver that with a standardized curriculum, so that floorlayers are trained the same way as professionals in St. Louis or Vancouver.

Q : Why should contractors work with professionals?

A : Three reasons: training, training, and training. The bottom line is this: an trained professional completes a job with fewer repairs and customer callbacks. The UBC commits more than $100 million USD each year to training its members, including floor coverers. Solid training produces qualified professionals who install flooring right the first time. It also results in a good reputation for professionals - and for the contractors who partner with us.

Q : Do professionals cost a lot more?

A : No. The work is done right the first time by highly skilled tradespeople with state-of-the-art training. This helps meet time and budget targets. Labour costs are more than compensated through the value attained. Workmanship is guaranteed, and proper training and experience make for a safer work site - which also means lower costs.