The Caravan Industry Association of Australia (CIAA) is taking another step forward in its ongoing compliance program with the launch of Salesperson Accreditation.
The program is aimed at ensuring that RV salespeople have a thorough knowledge of the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) and are equipped to provide the best possible customer experience, according to a press release.
For the last decade, the peak national body for the caravan industry has been working with state associations to increase awareness of applicable compliance and safety standards in the caravanning industry.
The successful Recreational Vehicle Manufacturing Accreditation Program (RVMAP) has been a key part of this effort, with a focus on safety and a commitment to driving down caravan accidents and protecting consumer safety across the country.
The RVMAP program involves a team of expert engineers conducting compliance inspections across the country. This year alone, the team has undertaken 458 inspections, while over the last five years, they have opened a staggering 4,635 inspection files.
The program has been incredibly successful, with a 40% reduction in compliance concerns identified over the past five years and an average of three times fewer compliance issues than manufactured products from outside of RVMAP.
Building on this success, the CIAA launched the Salesperson Accreditation program in a pilot phase in March. The program is designed to ensure that RV salespeople have a thorough understanding of ACL and are equipped to interact with customers in a way that is both professional and compliant.
Salespersons will need to complete a knowledge test around the ACL and abide by a code of conduct, subject themselves to police checks as required, as well as declare they have not been convicted of financial crimes in the past or are undischarged bankrupt.
Customers will be able to recognize those individuals who have achieved salesperson accreditation through a key insignia similar to the RVMAP key.
Those accredited will be issued with a badge with a photo, name, identification number, and expiry date, with accreditation requiring to be renewed on an annual basis following the conducting of targeted professional development and ongoing testing of their knowledge of the ACL.
CIAA CEO, Stuart Lamont, said: “as an industry, we strive to deliver the best experiences and products for our customers, with salesperson accreditation an important link in this chain as it is at the early stage of the customer journey.”
Customers are advised to look for the “KEY” for their next caravan purchase as a sign of commitment from the business or individual towards regulatory compliance and safety. With the rollout of the Salesperson Accreditation program, customers will start to differentiate between those who have embarked on industry accreditation and those who have not.
“We expect sales representatives to jump on this education program as a matter of priority, with 27 having already successfully completed sales accreditation in the first 10 days of the pilot phase. We are really excited to be able to provide yet another layer of confidence between the customer and the industry,” said Stuart.
The program will be fully rolled out at the upcoming National Conference in May, marking yet another important milestone in the ongoing efforts to improve compliance and safety standards across the caravan industry.