Accredidations & Memberships
Some of our memberships and accredidations we have worked hard to acheive, not only set us apart from the crowd but directly benefit our customers in a number of ways. Whether it just be peace of mind that we have valid liability cover that is independently checked or that we do what we say we do. Beneath is information on these and what we had to get the accredidations.
Confederation of Aerial Industries (CAI)
Originally set up to govern the aerial and later on the satellite market. The CAI has moved with our ever changing sector, since the rebrand to become the ‘Trade Association For Content Delivery’ the CAI now also covers the AV, CCTV and Data networking sectors.
Our membership directly benefits our customers by the CAI imposing strict guidelines on our installations, which includes a code of practice right down to ensuring we only use high quality parts and components. Obviously this benefits our customers by ensuring only high quality installations, but this also supplies further peace of mind to our domestic customers by the CAI themselves backing our guarantees for a period of 12 months. Meaning if for whatever reason we are unable to fulfil our obligations regarding guarantees on installations the CAI themselves would step in to honour this. Our membership also means we are able to keep up to date and embrace with changes within the industry. Unlike other industries where membership with a trade organisation is compulsory our membership is entirely our decision to further improve our service. If for whatever reason you may be unhappy with your installation from Smart Aerials, the CAI has a complaints procedure in place where they can step in and investigate the situation and is empowered to enforce sanctions if necessary.
In order to gain our CAI Plus accreditation. We were required to pass an initial pre-application assessment by a CAI Assessor. This included a visit from the Assessor who assessed several aspects of our business. From ensuring we have suitable test equipment to monitoring the way we deal with our telephone calls. We were also required to go out and show examples on recent installations to ensure quality. The assessor himself was a well-respected expert within the industry who has notably appeared on ITV and BBC programmes such as Rogue Traders in the role of the expert. We were also required to have valid and supply Safe Working at Heights certificate, DBS Check (formerly CRB) and Public Liability Insurance Cover for minimum of £5,000,000 for any accidental damage that may occur as a result of our work.
Buy With Confidence (BWC)
Our membership with the Buy With Confidence scheme, does exactly that for people wishing to buy from Smart Aerials. It allows our customers to buy with confidence from us. The scheme we are a member of is run East Sussex County Council and Trading Standards.
Our membership benefits our customers as to join and continue to be a member of the scheme we are committing ourselves to be continually vetted and monitored by Trading Standards local authority to ensure we are trading in a legal, honest and fair manner. It also means that we are able to advertise ourselves as being “Trading Standards Approved”
The scheme does not allow businesses to enter the scheme lightly and the application process is very thorough. Although to be accepted onto the scheme we didn’t have to change our business and practices dramatically, alone our application took almost 6 months to see to a conclusion. This is great for consumers as it means only suitable businesses will be accepted onto the scheme.
For us to join we were required attend a Buy With Confidence Audit. We had to supply detailed list copies of quotes, invoices, list of suppliers, details of other trade organisations we are a member, along with marketing material amongst other things for close examination along with:
- 6 References from previous customers chosen completely at random
- Valid DBS Check (Formerly CRB)
- Public liability Insurance
- Complaints procedure
- Terms and Conditions
- Cancellation of services procedure
Finally, should a dispute ever arise between us and our customers Trading Standards can even act as a mediator. Acting on the best interest of both parties. Although we hope that it will never come to this!
Perhaps one of the best known Trade Organisations. Our membership with Checkatrade gives our customers further peace of mind by giving them an opportunity to check us out before they use us by via our Checktrade page and compare us to other local businesses in the area offering the same services. It also gives them opportunity to leave their own feedback of our service for others to see.
Although the vetting process was nowhere near as thorough as with our ‘Buy With Confidence’ application we were required to have valid public liability insurance and a minimum of 6 references from customers, along with a pre-assessment meeting before we could join the scheme.
After being accepted we are closely monitored by Checkatrade on the day to day running of our business. If anything changes we have to inform them. Every time we have received a new accreditation we wish to add to our page this has to be submitted for approval before it can be added to our page. When our liability cover is due to renewal we receive reminders from Checkatrade and our performance is monitored via feedback cards which we hand to customers after each installation.
Although Checktrade has had some slight negative feedback in the press, most notably on BBCs Watchdog. It is still a trusted brand. Checkatrade is not compulsory whatsoever, comes with an annual fee and although we can’t speak for everyone on the scheme most members join to separate themselves from the crowd and care deeply about their own reputation. Most members are aware as they opening themselves up to public feedback, good or bad. The need to continually perform at a high standard or risk their reputation.