ICS Magazine

Collaboration - What Makes the Clean Trust Tick

February 1, 2012
Last month we put out a call for volunteers - and you answered back with a resounding yes.

Last month we put out a call for volunteers – and you answered back with a resounding yes. With energetic people filing in from 15 shareholder associations, you have demonstrated your commitment to continuing our position of strength in the industry.

The Clean Trust leadership is keenly focused on increasing overall collaboration, both internally and externally, to ensure efficiency. The good news is that a lot of this is already in the works. For example, when evaluating our Certification Council we realized our needs had evolved, so the re-formed Education Committee is better suited to fit the organization’s needs for planning, leading and directing the certification arm of The Clean Trust. The purpose of the committee is to create a global view of the education landscape that includes all stakeholders in the process as The Clean Trust continues to serve the industry through education and certification.

At the April meeting, the Education Committee gets its start, and the instructors will have an opportunity to ensure their voices are heard. Through an increased level of participation and the addition of a paid, full-time education staff, our certification process will remain the best in the industry.

As an organization of volunteers, working together is critical to our progress. We have made great strides to collaborate with like-minded organizations and this will be a focus moving forward. For example, in 2008, we developed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) regarding the use of the indoor environmental professional (IEP) designation. The consensus group consists of the American Indoor Air Quality Council, American Industrial Hygiene Association, Indoor Air Quality Association, Indoor Environmental Institute, Indoor Environmental Standards Organization, National Air Duct Cleaners Association, Restoration Industry Association, and Society of Cleaning and Restoration Technicians. Following on the heels of this successful initiative, we are working with an industrial hygienist group to determine if an MOU is appropriate for that situation as well.

Through efforts such as these, we can work with others in the industry to share costs, energy and provide the best value available to our registrants. If you have other organizations or suggestions on how we can best partner with others in our industry, please let the leadership know.

Beyond MOUs, our standards are the result of combined efforts from professionals around the industry. The R800 Reference Guide for Carpet Inspection, currently underway, is a great example. Between a chair, a vice chair, 12 to 15 voting members of the committee and more than 20 volunteers assigned to specific subcommittees and topics, we have the best inspection minds in the industry working on this guide. Mili Washington, the new Clean Trust standards director, will focus on streamlining the standards development process and strategy at The Clean Trust, working toward ANSI approval for new and revised standards, and using more digital tools to make virtual collaboration come to life.

Taking a lesson from governments around the world, we have to look at the organization holistically to determine where there is excess and where we can better utilize our resources. Our standards are not effective if they are not properly and technically applied. Working together – it’s my theme for 2012.