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CEDIA Recruiting for Aggressive Research Project

A CEDIA board member needs members to complete the Best Practices Survey that will be sent later this month.

Indianapolis, IN–CEDIA board member, Larry Dashiell, is making it his personal mission to discover business procedures that produce the best companies in the custom installation industry. To achieve his goal, however, Dashiell needs CEDIA members to complete the Best Practices Survey that will be sent to them later this month.

“I dont want CEDIA members to think that this is just another survey,” the Hometech president and CEDIA board member said. “I want to them to know that the information they will provide will finally enable us to benchmark the operating procedures that we should use to operate our businesses.”

Unlike most other current industry reports and statistics, the results of CEDIA Best Practices survey will be independently verified by RSM McGladrey to make sure it is accurate. RSM McGladrey is a respected accounting/consulting firm that has worked successfully with the American Medical Association and the Mayo Clinic.

Dashiell was quick to note that no CEDIA staff member will have access to the raw data derived from the survey. RSM McGladrey will have access that confidential information exclusively, providing CEDIA staff with only a summary report.

Dashiell explained that RSM McGladrey will identify “best practice” and key “benchmark metrics” for the industry, by searching for common business principles and finding out the general traits and characteristics of leading CEDIA members. They will then distribute and share information to the general CEDIA membership on ways to improve overall performance.

Areas of best practices that will be measured by the member survey include company planning processes and strategic positioning strategies; human resources practices, and policies; financial data for 2004 and previous years; sales, advertising, and marketing methods and results; customer relationship processes and results; productivity and production processes; company structures and leadership practices; and risk management practices and priorities.

Once the survey is completed, 10 top companies will be chosen and contacted. RSM McGladrey then will perform an onsite visit to those who agree to participate further. During the on-site visits, the consultants will shadow employees to understand the flow of their business and to gain a better understanding of their operational excellence. The information in the benchmarking report will describe the characteristics of the more efficiently run companies within CEDIA membership. The top 10 companies that are chosen will also receive a “value insight diagnostics” of their company. “A value insight diagnostics is a professional approach to determining business value,” Dashiell explained. “This will be provided as high-quality final report.”

Finally, upon completion of this entire process, a tool kit of the best practices will be put together for use by CEDIA members. There are also opportunities for developing education courses from these results.

“I think that if people really want this industry to grow and mature, they need to participate in this project,” Dashiell said. “We want CEDIA to mean something to the world and the world doesnt know CEDIA. If we go out to builders, architects, designers, and contracting and we say, Hire a CEDIA member, because theyre the best, we need to be able to back that up with proper industry data and educational programs.”

For more information, contact CEDIA at 800.669.5329.