Jan 2007 - Certification Program for Furniture Industry Gains Momentum
Logan - January 31, 2007. A new and unique certification program for retail furniture associates has been welcomed by the furniture industry in its first three months. Since the introduction of the program in October of last year, over 1000 sales associates have enrolled in the new certification program and 250 retail furniture employees have become certified in furniture product knowledge.
The online training program, Fundamentals of Furniture Product Knowledge, teaches and certifies retail furniture employees in furniture styles, construction, and materials. Individuals must complete a mastery test in each of 36 lessons with a minimum score of 80% in order to become certified. One large chain of furniture stores has certified nearly 50% of its sales associates since November.
Individuals who certify indicate that the knowledge they gain from the program makes it easier for them to close more sales. The training director for a large furniture chain in the Midwest states "Our new hires right after going through the training can go out and help customers on the sales floor without having to go look up information every time a customer asks them a question about a product. Now they know the answers. All our employees love the training."
The retail furniture industry faces a challenge common to all retailers - high turnover of sales people - which often reaches 50 percent or greater each year. "Many of the newly hired sales associates have little or no experience in furniture" notes Mark Lacy, President of The Furniture Training Company, which developed and hosts the online certification program. "Consumers are more sophisticated, and they want to buy from someone who knows more about the product than they do."
To help fill this need, The Furniture Training Company created the Fundamentals of Furniture Product Knowledge training and certification program. The program teaches product information that is independent of any specific manufacturer's brand or style. "That makes it unique, and it's one of the reasons the demand for the training is growing" states Mike Petersen, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for the company.
According to Petersen, the training and certification program is not only for new hires. "I talk with store owners and managers daily, and one of the things they are telling me is that even their sales people who have been around a while get a lot of value from the program. In fact, some are making certification mandatory for all their sales people."
About The Furniture Training Company
The Furniture Training Company provides technology-based training programs and services for the retail furniture industry. Hundreds of retail furniture stores around the world are currently using its Fundamentals of Furniture Product Knowledge sales training and certification program. For more information, go to http://www.furnituretrainingcompany.comSource: The Furniture Training Company, Inc
Contact: Mike Petersen, Vice President, Marketing
Phone: (866) 755-5996