APEX (Audiovisual Provider of Excellence) certification is recognized as a leading industry designation, by customers and by AV integrators. It’s administered by AVIXA (Audiovisual and Integrated Experience Association), a leading industry organization that updates it frequently.
AVIXA certifies more AV integrators than any other industry organization, so its training materials are the standard for many. That’s important for several reasons. For example:
1. APEX certification requires integrators to continue improving – APEX certification isn’t a one-time thing that integrators are permanently given. Every year, integrators must attain 100 “points” to maintain their AVIXA certification. One way for integrators to do this is to complete AVIXA educational courses, which are also considered industry standard. These courses focus on design, installation, project management and AV math, so they reach every part of the integration process. AVIXA also updates them as new technologies and methodologies are brought into the industry.
An APEX-certified integrator is always improving its knowledge, so it’s always at the forefront of the industry. Businesses and schools can be assured that an APEX-certified integrator is utilizing industry-current processes in its project design and installation.
2. APEX-certified integrators must have CTS-certified staff on hand – AV integrators can also tally points by keeping CTS-certified staff available. AVIXA’s CTS certification has been around for 30 years and is the single most popular certification for AV professionals. During CTS certification, AV professionals learn how to develop and deliver AV solutions, with the client’s budget and timeline in mind. Additional certifications are available through the CTS branch, including specialties in design and installation.
By the time an AV technician has completed CTS certification, they have learned the fundamentals of the AV industry and essential technical knowledge. This is of immediate benefit to customers who can rely on a CTS-certified technician to get the job done right.
3. APEX-certified integrators have a strong history of customer service – Yet another part of APEX certification is picking up positive customer surveys. These surveys are handled through a third party and cannot be accessed or modified by the integrator, so they are reliable evidence of that integrator’s professionalism.
Customer surveys count toward APEX point totals, so AV integrators must pick up additional positive surveys every year. In effect, these integrators aren’t just improving their AV fundamentals and knowledge regularly, they’re also frequently addressing their customer service processes.
4. Other industry certifications count toward APEX certification – There are several well-respected industry certifications in addition to APEX, and these can further round out an integrator’s skills. This includes certification through Crestron, Extron, Poly, Cisco and AMX, which are all positive additions to an integrator’s portfolio.
All of these certifications also add points to an integrator’s APEX total, so APEX-certified firms are more likely to be certified through other valuable programs. More knowledge means better capabilities, and that’s better for the industry and its customers.
5. APEX certification confirms an integrator’s commitment to the industry – APEX certification isn’t easy or inexpensive to attain, and reputable integrators prove their commitment to the industry and their customer’s when they prioritize certification. Further, with APEX certification, AV integrators become part of the industry’s larger community. This influence can be leveraged when an integrator needs to troubleshoot an unfamiliar problem or find a talented technician to hire.
With AVIXA resources available, integrators can access the industry’s best minds when a solution is needed. APEX-certified firms, then, are able to develop better AV solutions for their customers.
6. APEX certification ensures an integrator remains aware of industry trends – The AV industry is relatively young, and new technologies are emerging every year. Without a finger on the industry’s pulse, it’s difficult for integrators to keep up with newer and better solutions. APEX certification requires an integrator to refresh their knowledge constantly, so certified integrators know what to expect long before it’s available on the market. Customers that hire an APEX-certified firm are getting the best-researched solutions possible.
7. APEX certification helps the best integrators stand out – Because the AV industry is still so young, there are hundreds of AV companies competing for clients. Only some of the companies are true AV integrators, capable of managing an AV project from conception to execution and providing ongoing support. These are the AV specialists that businesses, schools and other organizations are looking for when they need an AV solution. That’s because an AV integrator handles all of the difficult technical decision-making, while adhering to the client’s needs and budget.
Modern AV solutions can be extremely complex in their design, especially when they must merge with existing AV infrastructure. The only way to do this reliably is with an experienced AV integrator, and APEX certification helps filter the most talented AV integrators from the rest.
APEX certification is good for everyone – for the AV integrator, for their customers and for the industry as a whole. It ensures integrators are more knowledgeable so they perform better, and it helps organizations find a worthy AV integrator for their project, regardless of the size or scope.
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