During Exertis Almo’s E4 event in Boston last month, NSCA’s executive director, Tom LeBlanc, led a discussion on the business challenges integrators will face in 2023. The roundtable discussion featured Rich Ventura, vice president of Sony Professional Display Solutions, Sam Taylor, EVP and COO of Exertis Almo and Eddie Nowik, inside sales at Diversfiied. The presentation centered on three overarching business challenges that integrators will face in the coming year.
Here, we explore each of the business challenges.
#1 The Supply Chain
The supply chain was, of course, a hot topic. LeBlanc said, “We can’t solve it…nobody can. But what integrators can do is focus on what you can control.” According to NSCA’s thought leaders, integrators should take on projects where they know they can get the products required. They should also look for projects where they can bring value beyond just selling boxes. “If you’re doing business like you were five years ago, you’re not going to be in business tomorrow,” LeBlanc declared.
And, when physical products aren’t in stock, cloud-delivered systems can be a good option for customers. What’s more, the cloud migration presents an opportunity for integrators to grow their income with the ballooning IoT device market. Ventura noted that industries across the U.S. will have to be resilient in the face of container-ship capacity limitations and other, related logistical challenges.
#2 Changing Landscape/Selling Services
Looking ahead, there’s going to be an even bigger focus on adding value for customers and selling services. This, of course, will be a game changer for integration firms. Integrators have to wear more hats than ever before, and they’re becoming jacks of all trades. Taylor foresees fundamental change in the next five years, and he believes integrators are just on the cusp of it. For integrators just starting out selling services, Taylor noted a range of service options they can explore and how Exertis Almo can help facilitate that.
#3 Workforce Training and Development
Integrators are also starting to rethink diversity, equity and inclusion within their companies, while also being mindful of how to fill various business roles. LeBlanc noted that it’s no longer sufficient just to assume talent will climb a company’s corporate ladder. Instead, NSCA advocates for something more like a lattice, where AV professionals can slide over to new roles. Of course, ongoing, mindful training is necessary for team members at all levels to give them a good chance to be successful.
What’s more, deliberate efforts to build up the next generation of talent are essential. The NSCA Ignite program is an indispensable resource for integration companies looking to incubate tomorrow’s superstars.
No matter what business challenges integrators are up against in the coming year, LeBlanc stressed the importance of never devaluing integration firms and the good work that integrators do. As NSCA often reminds us, AV integration is mission critical. We should carry ourselves with that recognition and price our products and services accordingly.
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