AVIXA’s monthly Pro AV Business Index, the gauge of the health of the AV industry, fell in both sales and employment for the third month in a row, as a low nationwide unemployment rate is hampering some integrators’ plans to grow their employee count and take on new or bigger projects.
In the monthly report, the Pro-AV Sales index fell slightly from 59.7 in October to 59.6 in November, while the Pro-AV Employment Index dipped from 62.3 to 58.6 from October to November.
The Pro AV Business Index measures the health of the AV industry, based on how many firms either stayed the same or grew at least 5 percent. Any number above 50 is an indication of a healthy market.
“Clearly, we’re still in growth mode but it might be a bit suppressed as we [were waiting] for the final outcome of the tax bill [recently signed by President Trump],” says AVIXA senior director of market intelligence Sean Wargo.
“I’m very curious to see how January fares.”
The Pro AV Business Index dipped in January and February 2017 before showing a rebound in March. Wargo sees changes to the corporate tax rate and other potential benefits to business owners as factors that could lead to growth in the monthly index.
“There are plenty of projects out there and we know there’s a desire to hire,” he says.
Many firms rely on seasonal hires in the fourth quarter of the year as they try to complete as many projects as possible before the calendar turns over, says Wargo.
“We’d rather have lots of jobs we can’t fill than see no jobs available and a lot of people out there who can’t find work. AVIXA serves as a catalyst for growth, meaning we’re trying to help our members identify and then go out and get what they need to grow,” he says.
Now that the index is well into its second year—it launched in September 2016—Wargo and director of market intelligence James Chu can look at it both month to month and year to year.
The results help Wargo inform AVIXA leadership about what programs and offerings they should expand or remove, although “all of those things take a while.”
“We may add further weight to a program or it might allow us to shift our resources in a new direction,” he says.
The Pro AV Business Index is a confidence meter of sorts and reflects outside the AV industry to show the state of the industry’s health, says Wargo.
Click here to apply for the AV Intelligence Panel that helps to build the monthly Pro AV Business Index.
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