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Certification key to build residential AV businesses

A panel of residential AV experts – architects of CEDIA’s new certification examinations – explained the virtues of education

Led by a panel of CEDIA certification volunteers and integration business owners, the ‘Build a Stronger Business with Professional CEDIA Certification session in the ISE Dome yesterday provided insight and consultation on how to leverage CEDIA certification to advance residential integrator careers. 

The panel discussed ‘certification journeys’: the retention and development of qualified staff and how best to enhance and leverage business credibility via certification. They went on to explain the landscape for professional certification, and practical ideas to apply to professional and business goals.

Hosted by Mandy Beckner, VP of education and training for CEDIA, and including Pete Trauth, founder of Nirvana Home Entertainment, Mike Ranpura, director at Smart Life AV, Baker Stone System founder Andy Baker, and Alan Matthews, founder of Automated Spaces, the session championed CEDIA’s Cabling & Infrastructure Technician (CIT) and Integrated Systems Technician (IST) qualifications, something the panellists were all involved in developing. 

The qualifications were developed to appeal to CEDIA members in the UK, Australia and India – as well as the US. Previously, certifications were – the panel explained – too US-focused. Now, terminology is more agnostic so as not to alienate non-American integrators – although metric and imperial measurements are still a point of difference!

The panel were keen to explain the importance of the qualifications – as well as CEDIA membership.
“As a commission member it helps with pitching new business,” said Ranpura. “It carries a lot of weight.”

Matthews agreed: “We put CEDIA front and centre at Automated Spaces. “Signage in our show home, logos on the website, all our collateral. CEDIA is part of our company ethos.”

Baker concluded that CEDIA is “all about education… Now, with a globally recognised standard, we’re out there with the best of them”.