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CEDIA’s Amazon Referral Program Has Tepid Reaction

In 2017, CEDIA announced the Amazon Home Technology Pro Engagement Program, but it appears that integrators have been hesitant to embrace the program.

CEDIA’s Amazon Referral Program Has Tepid Reaction
CEDIA Chair says the company plans on further promoting its Amazon Home Technology Pro Engagement Program, but admits it needs to further clarify the program for CEDIA members.

Jason Knott · May 16, 2018

In a wide-ranging discussion with David Humphries, chairperson, CEDIA, covered everything from the new headquarters to future education plans. He also addressed the Amazon Home Technology Pro Engagement Program, which has been off to a slow start. Here's what Humphries had to say:  

CE Pro: Last year CEDIA announced the Amazon Home Technology Pro Engagement Program that would act as a referral service for integrators. What feedback have you heard from the members of the program?

Humphries: To take a step back … CEDIA wants to try out new opportunities and new ideas for our members. If we don’t, we are just doing the same old things over and over again. The Amazon Home Technology Pro Engagement Program is one of those new ideas.

So, at the end of 2017, we pulled together a certification roadshow as an excellent platform to connect with home technology professionals who would qualify for this program. We wanted to work with our members, try it out and see if the members found value in it.

We hear from a lot of our members that they don’t know what to make of the program with Amazon yet. We’re trying to do some outreach to get it elevated so more integrators want to take part in it. Right now, we have not gained the momentum and critical mass to fully launch the program.

What that means is our members either don’t understand it or haven’t found any interest in it, but we are working on that and we’re going to continue to promote it. I’m sure we’ll be discussing this with the group at the CEDIA Business Xchange in May as well.

We’re going to continue to promote it and see if we can clarify it for our membership.

Tell us what you think about the Amazon Home Technology Pro Engagement Program and its future.



  About the Author

Jason has covered low-voltage electronics as an editor since 1990. He joined EH Publishing in 2000, and before that served as publisher and editor of Security Sales, a leading magazine for the security industry. He served as chairman of the Security Industry Association’s Education Committee from 2000-2004 and sat on the board of that association from 1998-2002. He is also a former board member of the Alarm Industry Research and Educational Foundation. He is currently a member of the CEDIA Education Action Team for Electronic Systems Business. Jason graduated from the University of Southern California. Have a suggestion or a topic you want to read more about? Email Jason at jknott@ehpub.com

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  Article Topics


Events · CEDIA · News · Amazon · All Topics
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Comments

Posted by iminate on May 22, 2018

Many years ago, I was an integrator in Texas and had the idea that business could grow so much faster if we became a one-stop shop.  So we added electrical and HVAC contracting and started taking only the projects where we did it all.  The thing I learned was that each had a different business model.  The typical CEDIA dealer at the time (and I’m not sure this has changed) tended to profit on hardware sales and grossly underestimate labor costs.  The result was that any profit that was made on a project came from the margin on the hardware, and final labor margins were pretty thin.  Electricians tended toward the opposite model.  There’s not much profit in 35 cent switches, even with big margins.  They value their labor highly and charge accordingly.  Consequently, the bulk of their profits come from labor sales.  They are much more efficient than the average CEDIA dealer, getting their guys on jobs at day break with their tools and products in hand to maximize the labor revenue each day. 
But the HVAC guys - they have it right - they get you on both sides, with hardware and labor both as significant profit centers.  They have the efficiency of the electricians on dispatching, and make the margins on hardware that we would all love to have. 
I have never been able to understand why CEDIA dealers didn’t follow this model.  As an organization, CEDIA should be providing metrics to help their members manage more profitable businesses.  A mature, proven model exists.  CEDIA needs to help their dealers emulate that.   


Posted by Wicked on May 21, 2018

CEDIA is losing touch with their membership. I recently read this gem from Dave Pedigo, VP of Emerging Technologies at CEDIA, “A good smart-home installer is going to sell you components largely at cost; what you pay for is labor. It’s the knowledge and the experience they have,” says Pedigo. “Same as a doctor or an auto mechanic: they’ve been trained, they’ve learned, and you’re paying for their experience.”  Nice work, Dave. Way to alienate a majority of your membership. That expertise we provide is only possible with equipment and labor margins. Experts don’t come cheap.

http://nymag.com/selectall/smarthome/smart-home-renovation-diy-do-it-yourself-hire-professional-installer.html

Posted by wiredupht on May 20, 2018

Agreed there is no Equipment margin installing for amazon

Posted by Adroit1 on May 20, 2018

I don’t understand why CEDIA would do business with a company that is trying to put as many CEDIA members out of business as possible.

Posted by Adroit1 on May 20, 2018

I don’t understand why CEDIA would do business with a company that is trying to put as many CEDIA members out of business as possible.

Posted by wiredupht on May 20, 2018

Agreed there is no Equipment margin installing for amazon

Posted by Wicked on May 21, 2018

CEDIA is losing touch with their membership. I recently read this gem from Dave Pedigo, VP of Emerging Technologies at CEDIA, “A good smart-home installer is going to sell you components largely at cost; what you pay for is labor. It’s the knowledge and the experience they have,” says Pedigo. “Same as a doctor or an auto mechanic: they’ve been trained, they’ve learned, and you’re paying for their experience.”  Nice work, Dave. Way to alienate a majority of your membership. That expertise we provide is only possible with equipment and labor margins. Experts don’t come cheap.

http://nymag.com/selectall/smarthome/smart-home-renovation-diy-do-it-yourself-hire-professional-installer.html

Posted by iminate on May 22, 2018

Many years ago, I was an integrator in Texas and had the idea that business could grow so much faster if we became a one-stop shop.  So we added electrical and HVAC contracting and started taking only the projects where we did it all.  The thing I learned was that each had a different business model.  The typical CEDIA dealer at the time (and I’m not sure this has changed) tended to profit on hardware sales and grossly underestimate labor costs.  The result was that any profit that was made on a project came from the margin on the hardware, and final labor margins were pretty thin.  Electricians tended toward the opposite model.  There’s not much profit in 35 cent switches, even with big margins.  They value their labor highly and charge accordingly.  Consequently, the bulk of their profits come from labor sales.  They are much more efficient than the average CEDIA dealer, getting their guys on jobs at day break with their tools and products in hand to maximize the labor revenue each day. 
But the HVAC guys - they have it right - they get you on both sides, with hardware and labor both as significant profit centers.  They have the efficiency of the electricians on dispatching, and make the margins on hardware that we would all love to have. 
I have never been able to understand why CEDIA dealers didn’t follow this model.  As an organization, CEDIA should be providing metrics to help their members manage more profitable businesses.  A mature, proven model exists.  CEDIA needs to help their dealers emulate that.