When you hire a water treatment representative, you want to choose the best. Water treatment is a specialized technology, so you want to be sure that your representative knows the industry and is capable of handling the many conditions necessary to prevent equipment failure and avoid the risk of infected systems. Here are some guidelines to help you hire the best:
- Determine the cause of your problem or need.
Do you have a boiler or cooling tower that needs service? Do you need a consultant to help you assess your situation? Do you need chemicals to treat a problem yourself?
- Create a Request for Proposal (RFP).
Detail the specifics of what you need. Determine and agree upon how you will measure success. Include qualifications such as:
- Experience – how many years does the individual or company have in the field?
- Education – is the water treater a Certified Water Technologist (CWT)? The CWT designation, the highest standard and only professional credential available to water treaters, ensures the water treater has passed a rigorous exam, the scrutiny of a peer review, and signed an extensive code of ethics. If the individual is not a CWT, do they have significant education in the field? Do they have a degree in chemistry or can they demonstrate attendance at industry seminars?
- Expertise – does the water treater have knowledge of your specific system or problem? When asking for a quote from potential vendors, ask the vendors to itemize all of their costs into specific categories you created. For example, have all vendors break out the cost of labor, chemicals, equipment, travel time, etc., rather than providing an overall cost. This will help you easily compare proposals.
- Find a consultant in your area.
Use AWT’s Find a Water Treater online directory to search for water treatment companies and consultants in your area to whom you can send your proposal.
- Review the proposals.
- Contact references given by the vendors.
At a minimum, ask the reference:
- Were you happy with the services provided by this vendor?
- Did the vendor stay within the proposed contract amount?
- If expenses ran over, were you notified in advance and given alternative solutions?
- Did they communicate well with you throughout the process?
- Do you still work with or would you work with this water treater again
Interview one or two of the vendors with whom you are considering working to determine if you can establish a healthy working relationship. Once hired, develop a good working relationship with your water treatment company; consider them an extension of your staff.