Apr 9, 2010 4:26 PM
The trend: AV integration meets mass notification. NSCA has just launched an online resource to help bridge the knowledge gap. (See "NSCA Launches Website to Help Systems Contractors Explore, Enter Mass Notification Market".) Next month, NSCA will also lend support to PSA-TEC, an event put on by PSA Security Network, an electronic security systems buying cooperative that also offers a wide range of education and support services to its members. In order to participate in the cooperative as a member and receive member pricing on equipment, credit terms, access to PSA’s online ordering system, lead referrals, and a host of other networking and education benefits, members must meet certain criteria: companies must have been in business for more than 3 years, sustained a sales volume greater than $1 million, have good credit, offer 24/7 service with 8-hour response, maintain loaner equipment and CAD capabilities, among other requirements. Director of Education Sharon Shaw says that the co-op has in recent years attracted AV systems integrators in part because of increased overlap between security and AV systems, and because technology and products for applications such as digital signage can have crossover application.
Nonmembers can also benefit from the cooperative through open educational offerings. The PSA-TEC event runs May 24-28 in Rosemont, Ill. One of the best ways to determine if the event is for you is to go to psatec.com, click on the Education link, and then scroll down to Search by Topic. You’ll see topics including access control, networking, managed services, and sound and communications. The sound and communications subtrack is aimed at the overlap between security and AV integrators, with sessions sponsored by familiar industry entities such as NSCA, AVAD, and Bosch, as well as sessions that cover elements of intercom and mass notification that may be new to you.
If you need further evidence that security systems integrators may indeed be among the brethren, PSA-TEC keynote will be delivered by U.S. Department of Defense security consultant Jeffrey Baxter, a Grammy-winning guitar player who got his start playing with the Doobie Brothers, Steely Dan, and Elton John; supported Dolly Parton and Donna Summer in the studio; and produced albums for the Stray Cats and Carl Wilson.