IFTI’s success didn't just happen overnight. For the past 20 years IFTI has constantly evolved and we’ve grown to become the largest and most reputable concrete slab moisture testing company in North America.
Training is the foundation upon which the company was built. When IFTI was first started, there was a huge gap in knowledge within the flooring industry on the topic of concrete slab moisture and how to address it. The was an even bigger gap related to how to properly test for moisture and there was no formal training available on the process or value of concrete slab moisture testing. While the ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials), standards provided good information and direction, they simply weren’t detailed enough to address all of the variables and nuances of testing. They also failed to provide any level of confidence that these tests were being done properly on a consistent basis. When founding IFTI, it was imperative that training videos and guides be made available so that testing could be performed correctly and on a consistently basis, no matter who was performing the tests. IFTI created the first concrete slab moisture testing training program and started building up its network of IFTI Certified Moisture testing technicians in 2005. It wasn’t until 2010 that the International Concrete Repair Institute, (ICRI) decided concrete moisture testing was important enough to create a certification program of their own.
Just like in sports, you can have all the training in the world but if you can’t execute on game day, it’s all for not.
Execution of our various testing services starts with well-trained individuals and a clearly defined scope of work. Having these two components mastered allows us to produce reliable information in a predictable manner and as IFTI expanded rapidly, better technology was required to handle the increased volume of work. Seeing all of the potential advantages of technology, IFTI set out to create its own proprietary web based project workflow management system. This tool would eventually become the keystone our growth was built on. With this new system, IFTI could now better manage their projects which eventually lead to better data verification and audits of test data.
In order to improve you must first learn from your mistakes.
Data verification was put into place to prevent any incorrect information from making its way into a final report. What it really did was hold people accountable for their actions and created a Kaizen culture of continuous improvement.
IFTI field technicians are given very specific photo requirements for every project, allowing IFTI staff to thoroughly review each and every detail to ensure data integrity. If any of the work performed fails to meet ASTM and/or IFTI standards, the project is rejected back to the technician and a retest is typically required. This constant audit of work forces our technicians to learn from their mistakes and provides our clients with the best data available.
Before a report even reaches the desk of an approved report certifier, the data has already been thoroughly reviewed by the Project Manager and an IFTI Certified Technical Writer. The report certifier will do a final comprehensive review before the report is signed. A signed IFTI report is fully backed by IFTI Errors and Omission insurance, so you can rest assured that the information in our report is something you can rely on.
Independent/third Party Testing
If you still aren’t convinced that IFTI should be the company performing all of your concrete slab moisture testing, at least consider the importance of hiring an independent/third party testing firm.
Here are our top 3 reasons for hiring an independent for moisture testing:
- Experience/expertise – As compared to most flooring installers, a firm that performs independent moisture testing will typically have much more experience around the testing procedures and processes. Just be sure that the testing firm is sending out a technician that has some level of certification on moisture testing (IFTI or ICRI certified preferred).
- Eliminates potential conflict of interest – In the construction industry, it is common practice to have performance tests done by third parties to eliminate any potential conflicts of interest. Concrete slab moisture testing is no different. A flooring contractor may benefit from having high moisture in the concrete which would allow them to suggest an alternate product, which would in turn increase their profit on the project. When testing is performed by an independent testing firm, their only interest is getting the correct information and exceeding the client's expectations.
- Recommendations – An experienced moisture testing firm should have an expert on staff that can help with product recommendations. A flooring installer may not be aware of all of the products on the market, or may favor a product that affords them the highest margins. When you hire an expert for moisture testing, not only are you getting the most reliable information, but also a cost effective recommendation based on product performance.
We aren’t the only ones that believe in the importance of independent moisture testing. Even the flooring contractors would rather not perform moisture tests themselves as evidenced in this compelling white paper produced by the Floor Covering Installation Contractors Association (FCICA).