It is no secret that the smart home industry has boomed. A mixture of high end and affordable systems available on today’s market mean many homeowners are enjoying life with technology and custom install experts are enjoying the surge in business growth. Matt Nimmons, Operations Director at CEDIA explores how electrical contractors can also gain from this market.
RISE OF THE SMART HOME
Smart home technology used to be the preserve of the super-rich. However, according to a Digital Homes report commissioned last year by Barclays, in partnership with YouGov, 41% of UK homeowners already have some form of connected technology in their home. By 2020, Frost & Sullivan state that this market penetration will have increased significantly to a point where there will be 10 connected devices in every household.
To many electricians, the home technology industry is a daunting, unfamiliar territory. However, with smart home technology becoming more available to the masses, and on course for rapid growth in the years ahead, now is the time for electrical contractors to venture into this growing home technology sector.
SPARKING AN INTEREST IN THE HOME TECHNOLOGY INDUSTRY
The home technology industry is ideal for electrical contractors who want to enter a growing lucrative market, increase business opportunities and develop new business relationships with CEDIA members and other professionals in the industry. With new technology, unfamiliar terminology and specialist integration skills, it can be an overwhelming task entering the industry without the necessary training. It is therefore advised that electrical contractors should partake in specialised programmes to help them understand and benefit from this highly profitable market.
In the past couple of months CEDIA has recorded a noticeable increase in the number of electrical contracting companies joining the association. In particular, there is a noticeable increase in the number of electrician’s that have changed their business names and professional titles to include AV in order to represent and appeal to the wider offering.
At the heart of CEDIA is its commitment to providing individuals with high quality education and training at every level. CEDIA provides various courses and opportunities that are suitable for electrical contractors.
One of CEDIA’s most popular education programmes is its Smart Home Technology course that provides an ideal introduction to the home technology industry for those wanting to start a career or expand their business in the sector. The next date for this course is 22nd July 2016 and is available to both CEDIA members and non-members.
Also ideal for electrical contractors is CEDIA’s Smart Home Wiring course. With virtually all household technologies part of the home network, a simple phone line and TV antenna is not adequate to support the technology now available to home owners. During the one day course, attendees will learn how to plan and install a wireless infrastructure that can withstand and integrate a range of modern technological demands. The course is based on CEDIA’s Smart Home Recommended Wiring Guidelines that was released to help electricians understand the comprehensive cabling infrastructure required for the modern home. The document is free to download via the CEDIA website.
CEDIA has also partnered with Certsure, a foundation for building services certification, to host a new, very popular two-day course. The ‘Data Cabling for Domestic Installers’ course has been designed specifically for established electricians who are planning to branch out and extend their services to the smart home industry.
During the course, delegates will be guided through practical demonstrations, including fitting and testing connections and wiring a data network suitable for a smart home. The first day will cover ‘Cables and Connectivity’ with day two focusing on ‘Data Networks in Residential Properties’.
Once electrical contractors have passed this course, they will be able to develop their knowledge and skills in many other areas within smart home technology, including audio and video distribution, sub-system integration and control.
CITY & GUILDS COURSES
At the beginning of 2016, CEDIA launched two new training courses, Smart Home Technician and Smart Home Designer tracks, that have been recognised by City & Guilds, the international governing body for training. Attendees who successfully complete the courses will obtain the only City & Guilds certification in the smart home technology industry, helping them stand out as true professionals in a very competitive market.
As City & Guilds accreditations are only awarded to the highest quality programmes, CEDIA is providing electricians’ exclusive training that will give them crucial credibility and allow them to succeed in the smart home industry
CEDIA’s City & Guild’s programmes are ideal training programmes for electrical contractors to increase their proficiency within the home technology industry. Combining a range of CEDIA courses, the programmes allow participants to develop a comprehensive knowledge across the industry. The Smart Home Technician course features 12 courses from the CEDIA Boot Camp, ESC Technical and Networking schools. Attendees to the course undertake modules on Home Cinema & HD Video Distribution, Rack Building & Wiring Fundamentals, Smart Home Control & Lighting Systems and Wireless Residential Networking before sitting the certification examinations (ESC-T and ESC-N).
The City & Guild’s accredited Smart Home Designer track is also recommended for electrician’s who want to expand their expertise into home technology. This programme is formed of eight training courses from CEDIA’s popular Designer School, Lighting and Home Cinema Design Packages.
To find out more about all of the courses, career pathways and training that CEDIA has to offer and how they can benefit electricians, we advise you to download the new Training and Curriculum Guide at www.cediaeducation.com/curriculum-guide. Alternatively, to book a place onto any of CEDIA’s courses, including its City & Guilds accredited courses, please visit www.cediaeducation.com.