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Equipment Certified Professional designations gain traction in Region Three

By Brock Huffstutler

November 7, 2023

Professional certification signifies that you possess a strong knowledge, expertise and commitment to your industry and customers. Equipment rental professionals have embraced the value of certification by learning from the success of the American Rental Association’s (ARA) popular Certified Event Rental Professional (CERP) program for those in the event segment.

Now equipment rental pros can pursue certifications that will earn them an identifier that is unique to their rental segment: Equipment Certified Professional (ECP).

ECP is a new professional designation extended to those who complete one of ARA’s suite of equipment rental-specific certification programs, including:

ARA Certified Service Technician. This program is designed for employees interested in honing their skills in equipment maintenance, safety and technical knowledge. Employees well-suited for this track include yard, service, mechanic and operations staff. Those who complete the program receive an ECP-ST (Equipment Certified Professional – Service Technician) professional designation.

ARA Certified Sales and Marketing. Designed for employees responsible for customer interactions, digital marketing and more, employees well-suited for this program include sales staff, customer service representatives and office managers. Those who complete the program receive an ECP-SM (Equipment Certified Professional – Sales and Marketing) professional designation.

“These professional, portable certifications bring value to the industry by supporting career paths within the industry and increasing members’ ability to attract, train and retain talent as well as keep talent within the industry,” says Josh Nickell, ECP-SMM/MI, ARA vice president, equipment segment.

See who has earned ECP-SM and ECP-ST professional designations across ARA’s Region Three (which covers Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee):

  • Chase Daniell, ECP-SM, Action Rental & Sales of Chattanooga, Chattanooga, Tenn.
  • Carol Fontanez, ECP-SM, Jamco, Inc., Sanford, Fla.
  • Christopher Hudson, ECP-ST, 4H Services and Rental, Pensacola, Fla.

“The quality of the content was solid; there were some really valuable lessons throughout,” says Daniell, who completed ARA Certified Sales and Marketing, adding that “I find myself using ways to overcome [customer] objections the most.”

Daniell says his ECP designation is paying off in other important ways too. “These credentials have already helped me earn a pay increase of $2/hr. in just six months of starting with my company.”

“High-quality content,” is how Fontanez describes the certification course she took. “It was well-structured and up-to-date material that covered essential topics, including customer behavior, sales techniques and digital marketing, to name a few. The flexibility to complete the training at your pace was one of the key factors for me,” she says.

Fontanez adds that earning a certification “from a well-established and reputable organization like ARA will enhance my credibility and demonstrate my commitment to the field I am in. In addition, a certification can instill trust in my expertise and abilities, making it easier to attract and retain clients.”

ECP designations also are available for those who complete ARA’s additional equipment certification or certificate programs, including:

ARA Certified MEWP (Mobile Elevating Work Platform) Train the Trainer — graduates receive ECP-MT designation.

ARA Certified MEWP Operator — graduates receive ECP-MO designation.

ARA Professional Driver Education Program — graduates receive ECP-PD designation.

Learn more about ARA industry certification and education programs under the “Learn” tab at