There's many ways to certify a roofing applicator or roofer. You can sponsor them into the RCABC-WSRCA-CRCA for approval to become a roofing apprentice. Here they can take a shop test on roofing in a skylight with a selective industry standard manufactured product. After so many shop physical tests they can finalize it all with a written test, and if everything looks good then they can go on to work with a journeyman roofer of the sponsored company. After so many years here they can apply for a red seal government exam.
The problem with associations, and government facilities is that they are not perfect. They are not perfectly designed to work in conjunction with the roofing industry as a whole system. The government exam is just that, an exam. There is no other pre-testing or an inspector that could take out an associations apprentice into the roofing field and go onto jobs in progress where the inspector could ask appropriate on-site questions for certification. The other issue is that the government exam was put together by selective roofers in mostly residential categories with some commercial properties. The industrial area of it is outdated, and desperately needs a major overhaul. It doesn't surround the roofing industries many areas or all products. The test is also multiple choice, and has on most questions 4 possible answers to every question. Two of the answers would be obviously seen as silly by anyone whos ever worked in the roofing industry for even just 3 years. The other two answers in most cases can work in the roofing industry for the question, but because 3 of the 5 roofers that designed the test approved one over the other, it made it the ultimate answer? We think that this is just ridiculous.
The other alternative is to certify your own top contractors which is what the roofing group has done. Like major roofing and waterproofing giants have done like Tremco which has an ISO rating and 9002 Certification. A certification like this is given to companies which exceed their industry standards. It places them in an elite category where because they manufacture their own products, that they can design their own certifications.
Our advise to a building owner or even a residential owner is just simply ask for a reference on a job completed roughly 5-6 years ago. With this info it will enable you to not only check on the job, but knock on the door and ask them how the roof is. Most roofing companies, especially volume ones will always only give reference to a recently completed job? This is absurd as it hasn't proved the test of time yet.