In addition, the association has:
- Engaged with 1,675 architects, builders, and design firms to promote individual HTA Certified firms for projects
- Had 2,300 articles read on its website
- Had 4,888 budgets created on its HTA Budget Calculator
HTA’s goals are to raise the visibility of top technology integration firms and establish relationships with architects, builders, and designers.
The association’s tools include a Budget Calculator, the HTA Certified dealer finder, and a website full of articles and other resources aimed to help consumers, interior designers, architects, and builders to choose a technology integration firm for their projects.
“I use the HTA articles with my clients and builders all the time,” says Navot Shoresh, CEO of HTA Certified integration firm Spire.
“These articles educate homeowners on what they should expect from a professional integrator… which highlights the difference between Spire and our typical competitors.”
HTA Industry Involvement Expands
Many of the HTA’s growth initiatives involve engaging with builders and the Architect & Design (A&D) community and providing an educational resource for consumers interested in home technology.
According to the association, a representative of the American Institute of Architects’ (AIA) Custom Residential Architects Network (CRAN) division reached out to HTA in early 2018 seeking guidance on how to best work with technology integration firms.
The Home Technology Association connected Bryan Mills of HTA Certified Mills Technologies in Chicago with CRAN representatives and he presented at the 2018 CRAN Symposium, sharing tips on how to budget for smart home systems and what to look for in a home technology firm.
Also in 2018, the Home Technology Association was featured on an American Institute of Building Design (AIBD) webinar, including a live, instructional demo of the Budget Calculator and the HTA Certified home technology professional finder.
“We received a lot of positive feedback from architects, builders, and interior designers. They love the technology budget calculator, and they understand the need for a standard in this industry.
“Most have had poor technology experiences in the past, and they recognize HTA Certification as a way to greatly increase the chance their clients will find the most-qualified integrators. We are planning more trade partner outreach efforts in 2019,” says HTA’s director of certification Josh Christian.
The HTA Budget Calculator is a free-to-use online tool that quickly shows what the overall cost of technology installations within the home should be. Both the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) and the American Institute of Building Design (AIBD) now link to the HTA Budget Calculator on their websites.
In 2019, the Home Technology Association will work to align more closely with other national A&D associations to share insights and encourage more widespread use of the calculator with the goal of helping people better understand what a realistic budget for professionally-installed home technology systems should be.
“We find that the HTA Budget Calculator is a quick and easy tool that helps our customers understand precisely what drives the overall cost of a project,” says Evan Struhl, CEO of HTA Certified Cutting Edge Systems in Westford, Mass. “The calculator has been instrumental in walking every client through early discussions about pricing and is now a relevant step in our everyday process.”
Savant, D-Tools, Control4 Display HTA Certification
Several industry suppliers are promoting the HTA. In January 2018, D-Tools made it possible for users to add HTA certification badges to bids and other documentation in the D-Tools System Integrator platform.
Savant updated its dealer finder to display HTA certification prominently. Control4 will allow their authorized dealers to update their Control4 profiles to include their HTA designation by the end of the first quarter. The HTA is currently in talks to have other high-profile manufacturers add indications of HTA certification to their dealer finders as well.
Christian looks back on the organization’s first year as a quantifiable success.
“We estimate that over $15 million projects dollars have been shifted away from unqualified dealers to HTA Certified home technology professionals, which is a meaningful and significant start. This is what we set out to do, to help the best technology firms win the projects they deserve. This is a win for the client, the HTA Certified firm, and our industry as a whole,” Christian says.
“The Home Technology Association’s inaugural year was a great success and 2019 is off to an equally exciting start. HTA Certified technology integration firms are telling us they have experienced unprecedented success in the marketplace, with many reporting their best year ever.
“As more dealers add HTA certification into their sales pitch, awareness of this meaningful standard and the value of certification will continue to grow. Professional certifications and standards create clarity, instill confidence, and help ensure consumers experience and enjoy everything technology can do in the home,” he concludes.