ESX is different from all other industry conferences and shows because it’s owned by the Central Station Alarm Association (CSAA) and Electronic Security Association (ESA). The revenue generated by the conference will remain within the industry to be used for programming, education, legislative activities and public relations to benefit your company.
This story is based on an article originally appearing in ESA’s National Training School newsletter.
ADS Security, which provides a full range of services to more than 70,000 residential and business customers throughout the southeastern United States, is serious about their training efforts.
The Nashville-based company, established in 1989, operates the only UL-listed, CSAA Five Diamond Central Station monitoring operation in Middle Tennessee, according to Operations Manager Jim Bayless.
Each Central Station Operator at ADS has earned the Five Diamond Central Station Certificate, the highest training certification available in the industry. That, says Bayless is a reflection of the commitment ADS makes to the training and development of their people.
At ADS, Certified Alarm Technician – Level 1 is the minimum requirement for employees, and staff are strongly encouraged to build on that and grow their education.
“Depending on their background,” says Bayless, “in addition to Level 1, they’ll be encouraged to take Advanced Intrusion Systems (AIS, formerly Advanced Burglar Alarm Technician) or Troubleshooting, Service and Maintenance (TSM) in their first year.”
For a company with multiple branches, ADS manages their efforts with a central training hub under the direction of the HR department. Information is gathered from the branch offices, and a schedule/grid is maintained. On a quarterly basis, the schedule is updated on what courses the techs are taking, what they’ve passed, and what they still need to pass – planned a whole year forward.
Their management method works especially well given that ADS operated in several states that legislate technicians and salespeople pass Level 1 within the first year of their employment. “Therefore, we try to schedule those folks within their last six months, at the latest,” says Bayless.
Beyond taking Level 1, much of the training direction comes from the GMs of the 14 branch offices, who give direction to HR for what continuing training they want their staff to have.
Training for salespeople is similar but not as stringent. Sales staff are encouraged to take a number of courses offered through NTS, as well as vendor training.
Some of that encouragement involves remuneration. ADS rewards techs with pay increases in several different steps. From new hires to senior techs, as they advance in knowledge, their job title and pay increases.
In addition to following NTS curriculum, ADS does quite a bit of manufacturer-offered training that will involve both salespeople and technicians on a given piece of equipment.
“If we decide as a company that we’re going to pick up a brand or device, we put a lot of effort into training our people on it,” says Bayless.
Typically, product training is managed through the central office, but if a branch feels that a refresher course is warranted, those are scheduled.
ADS is so serious about the central role of training that it is a specific line item in their annual budget. “In the past three years,” says Bayless. “we have stepped up our education budget, and 2010 training budget $90,000 for the 95 technicians working with .”
While that may seen like a lot of money, according to Bayless, “You can end up spending a lot more than that as a result of not training your techs properly!”
ESX will cover a host of topics in its leading education program. Its networking events will inspire and motivate your staff and its exhibitors will display cutting-edge technologies and services on the expo floor. Register your team for Deluxe Passes and get access to it all.