What Credentials Should a Tree Service Have
If you’re thinking about hiring someone to remove trees or prune them, it’s important to understand how the industry works and what credentials are the most trustworthy. Otherwise, you risk hiring an inexperienced company that may do more harm than good or one that takes advantage of you during the process. There are three main certifications in the tree care industry, each of which has its own responsibilities and processes for obtaining it. Read on to learn more about these credentials and why they’re important to consider when hiring a tree service.
1) ISA Certification (International Society of Arboriculture)
ISA is a nonprofit association dedicated to the advancement of arboriculture on a global scale. ISA issues three different credentials, ranging from those for tree removal, tree pruning, and tree trimming. In order for a tree care company to become ISA-certified, they need to complete a minimum of 400 hours of tree care education. In addition, they have to pass a written exam, as well as a hands-on demonstration on how they perform the skills required of a tree care professional. These certifications are relevant for individuals or companies that perform tree care work for clients, but they’re also useful for people that work within the industry. Any tree care professional that wants to take their education to the next level can obtain an ISA certification—which in most cases means completing at least one or two tree certifications—to make themselves stand out when looking for work or starting their own business. Moreover, these certificates are internationally-recognized, which gives individuals the opportunity to work internationally even if they don’t have that sort of experience. In essence, if you as a homeowner or business are looking for someone to perform tree care services for you, you should hire someone who’s ISA-certified for they have the highest standard of education and experience required in the industry.
2) TCIA (Tree Care Industry Association)
In addition to ISA, tree care professionals can choose to become certified by the TCIA. The Tree Care Industry Association is the largest tree care association in the world, and its primary purpose is to improve the standards of tree care by offering training for tree care professionals. In addition, they provide a conference and a forum where professionals can learn more about best practices in the industry, which is a great way of keeping tree care services standardized and of high quality. When searching for a tree care service, dealers and individuals alike should look for the TCIA logo on the door of a company’s office or truck because that means that they’re members in good standing with the association and that they’re dedicated to providing community education in the area.
3) NALP (National Association of Landscape Professionals)
NALP is an organization dedicated to equipping landscape professionals with the knowledge and certification they need to be successful in their business. They’ve partnered with ISA in order to become ISA-approved, which means that the ISA certification process applies to all NALP training. Also, like TCIA, NALP has created a program to provide land management training, which is great for all individuals in the landscaping business (and there are over 5 million in the United States alone). NALP provides certification options in both landscape care and design, but they’re best known for their tree care training, which requires 400 hours of study in addition to earning an ISA arborist certification (which requires all of the same features). There aren’t many trees in the landscape business, but if you’re looking to take your career to the next level, you’ll want to consider earning a NALP certification as well as an ISA certification. And since NALP is partnered with ISA, all NALP plants professionals earn an ISA arborist certification as a result.
HIRE A TREE SERVICE WITH THE RIGHT CREDENTIALS
The reputation of tree service is only as good as the reputation of its workers. Otherwise, a company can be viewed as a bunch of ignorant employees that just want a paycheck. In addition, hiring a bad company for a large project could cost a homeowner a lot of money in damages if they perform a poor job. If you’re in the market for a professional company, look for ISA-certified or NALP-certified employees, which is a great barometer for the quality of the service. In addition, consider both the repair and maintenance costs of a company before hiring them. After all, a lot of trees cost a lot to maintain, and the cost of a single mistake goes a long way.