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Training for LVT – Is it important?

David Russell stresses the importance of training for flooring contractors and fitters.

WE all know installing LVT can be very challenging, especially as customers are becoming more aware of what’s possible with LVT and the designs that skilled installers can create. This is evident just by looking through social media platforms at the work that’s being produced. This tells us there are installers who wish to push their abilities so they can offer a larger portfolio to their customer and stand out above the competition.

The question is how do we get better to be able to push these abilities? We could spend countless hours exploring various techniques to sometimes get it right and sometimes not. The other option is to invest in your time to attend a course which has more benefits than first thought of. The first area you may consider is subfloor preparation as this can be a mine field, and itself being one of the biggest factors of LVT floors failing. Attending a course with subfloor preparation included will give you knowledge, confidence and know-how. Over my years as an instructor, many of the questions I have from installers are regarding subfloors and the best way to overcome associated problems. A course answers many of these questions and an LVT installation can only be as good as the preparation.

For those who have installed LVT, we know it takes intricate skills and knowledge to ensure the installation is top quality when the job is complete and for years to come down the line. Especially with homes and businesses being more architecturally challenging. In my opinion, courses are the most efficient way of learning how to achieve optimum results and improve on efficiency, setting out for the more complex designs of LVT by using the correct adhesives in the right way, cutting and back marking techniques to overcome the most awkward situations and the prevention of potential failures, which can cost money and reputation.

Another advantage is there are loads of tools to help get the job done more accurately and efficiently, so attending a course gives you a great opportunity to get to grips with these prior to spending your hard-earned money, such as guillotines which can cost £500 to over £1000. Making sure you get one that’s right and using it to the best effect is a great advantage. As an instructor at CP Assessments, we’ve a large selection of guillotines to use and we welcome attendees to bring their own to use while training, which in turn sets them up knowing exactly what to expect in the workplace. Learning how to use hand tools to the best and most accurate effect has got to be worth it?

The correct environment and conditions for learning is especially important and instructors are there to give you the time and attention to further your ability. How one person learns may be different to how others learn so having a qualified instructor or tutor can make the difference in helping the individual to achieve outstanding results, which is a key factor in attending a course.

We all know that methods and products are ever evolving, so investing in your own continuous professional development helps you stay up dated and able to adapt and improve on overall professionalism. If you turn this into paid work, the course will pay for itself.

Prior to attending an LVT course, my advice would be to carefully choose the correct level. This would maximise what you take away and ensure you can use the skills and knowledge that’s been learnt effectively. These courses are normally listed as:

  • Level one
  • Those new to LVT or with limited experience
  • Level two
  • Experienced installers wanting to further their skills and knowledge
  • Level three
  • Advanced LVT installers

Other ways you can provide your customers with confidence is to achieve qualifications or accreditations. CP Assessments offer LVT accreditations which are backed by awarding body NOCN, that installers can undertake at three different levels. These look at every element from the planning and preparation all the way through to the aftercare that we’re responsible to provide our customers. There’s level one – Essentials, level two – Skilled and level three – Master Craftsman. Never stop learning and remember without knowledge your skills are limited as they cannot be focused or adapted to different situations.

David Russell is curriculum manger and trainer at CP Assessments

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