The Floor Covering Industry Issues Council (FCIIC) held its fall meeting in Chicago on Oct 25. Leaders of flooring industry trade associations convened to share information on an array of topics and explore opportunities to partner on initiatives that create value for their members and the overall flooring industry.

Installation standards and the importance of installer training were an important focus of the agenda. Participants were briefed on a cooperative agreement between two FCIIC participants -- the International Certified Flooring Installers Association (CFI) and the World Floor Covering Association (WFCA) -- to launch a nationwide flooring installation training program beginning in 2014.  The program will feature hands-on workshops conducted in six locations across the U.S. by some of the most knowledgeable trainers in the industry. Students can receive instruction in installing carpet, as well as ceramic, resilient, laminate and wood flooring and inspecting carpet installations.  Another installation-related topic was an update by Patrick Winters, president of the Institute for Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), on the progress in developing a carpet installation standard, a process that involves the CFI, IICRC, and WFCA among other organizations. 

“The willingness of flooring trade associations to meet face-to-face twice a year to discuss issues and opportunities to make a difference in the marketplace sets our industry apart from most others,” says Winters. “The fact that the industry leaders at the FCIIC table are stepping up to address installation issues, which have been an Achilles heel for the flooring industry for many years, is a great example of how working together can make things better for everyone in the value chain.”

Participants in the FCIIC, originally called the Carpet Industry Issues Council, have been meeting twice annually since 1994 to share information, define and address areas of mutual interest and build cooperation among the various flooring industry segments.  Participating associations are the International Certified Flooring Installers (CFI); Flooring Contractors Association (FCICA); Institute for Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC); North American Association of Floor Covering Distributors (NAFCD); North American Laminate Flooring Association (NALFA); National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA); and World Floor Covering Association (WFCA).

The next meeting of the FCIIC will take place on April 15, 2014 in Chicago.