POV: InfoComm President’s Message
Feb 1, 2007 12:00 PM, By Jay Armand, CTS
As one of my first acts as InfoComm's new president, I want to share an update on InfoComm's plans for 2007, and to encourage you to become involved in your AV association. Currently, association membership is more than 4,100 strong with members in 70 countries.
Last year was tremendous for InfoComm, and we plan on carrying that momentum into the next 12 months. After having a record show in 2006, we expect to shatter all of those records again in Anaheim, Calif., this June 15-21. We anticipate having more than 28,000 attendees and 770 exhibitors participating in InfoComm 2007.
Beyond the show, InfoComm continues its focus on issues of industry quality. By aligning itself with world-class organizations such as Project Management Institute, ANSI, and ISO, InfoComm is ensuring that the education programs it offers to the industry are first-rate and contain content that is independently verified and wanted by the industry. This year, a number of meetings are taking place to ensure the Certified Technology Specialist program is up-to-date and relevant. We have applied for ANSI-ISO accreditation of the CTS program and hope to have that designation by mid-year. The CTS program has more than 6,000 industry professionals certified, and we are looking forward to the continued growth and recognition of this valuable program.
With strong support from the membership, InfoComm is also applying to become a recognized ANSI-ISO standards-setting organization. This will allow InfoComm to engage the industry in discussions to create recognized and measurable systems performance standards for systems building. Standards development will encourage the use of the industry's best practices and the provision of better service to consumers and users.
This quality movement and standards effort for our members is being matched by our own internal review of how our association is governed. Over the next year, we will look at the election process, board membership, how to gather good data for decision-making, and other topics that reflect on how to best govern the association to provide our members and the industry the best possible products and services.
Our long-standing emphasis on education is responding to the industry's increased demand for a well-trained, quality workforce. Although our industry is doing well worldwide, InfoComm market research studies show that the biggest obstacle to further growth is the need for tech-savvy, customer-focused employees. As a result, the association is making a number of resources available to help members develop the next generation of quality installers. A new AV Installation Handbook containing straightforward explanations and color pictures was released in December, and an interactive Online Installation Resource Center with all of InfoComm's installation resources in one place is now contained on InfoComm's newly revamped website, www.infocomm.org. These excellent resources complement the AV Design Reference Manual developed recently through a partnership with BICSI, the AV Best Practices Guide, and the Basics of Audio and Video Systems.
InfoComm is also continuing to help members with recruiting and training. Last year, InfoComm developed a free Workforce Development Kit designed to give members the resources they need to attract new talent. This year, InfoComm is launching a pilot program, AV CareerCorps, in which it will visit career fairs and advertise opportunities to find careers in the AV industry.
InfoComm will soon release its comprehensive “2006 Market Definition and Strategy Study,” which will provide the industry with valuable statistics and trends.
This year, InfoComm will offer regional training, industry roundtables, and “lunch and learns” with other industries — a wider variety of programming than ever before. I hope you will visit the events section of InfoComm's website to see the full range of activities that will be offered in or around your area.
An active membership will be an important catalyst for the continued growth of innovation and quality in the AV industry throughout the world. I urge you to bring your talents to the table and become active in the association — whether it is by joining a council or committee, participating in AV Week in October, creating incentives for your employees to take education classes, or using the many marketing tools the association provides for your business. I promise that the results will be rewarding.
Jay Armand, CTS, is president and COO of Advanced AV System Integration and is currently serving as president of InfoComm International.
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