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Integrators Share Top Tips, Tricks, Tools & Tactics

The cover story for the June 2017 Residential Systems Magazine is called Keys to Success: Home Tech Pros Share Secrets. This article presents a collection of VERY clevel tips, tricks, tools, and tactics that custom integrators all around the country use to drive their success. In many cases, these ideas are their secret weapon that they picked up along the way from other integrators – or developed themselves through good old-fashionbed trial and error.

In most cases, they are clever tools that saves time, improves efficiencies, or even allows you to do things you couldn’t do before. Most importantly, these are tools that once you know about them, could help you as well.

Some of our favorite tips, tricks, tools, and tactics from this article are:

  • Time Saving Training Tool – An integrator sought to make onboarding new techs more efficient and less of a drag on his time. He accomplished this with the help of YouTube, where he discovered that by diligently searching the service, he could find very high quality videos of technicians showing the proper way to, for example, install a sophisticated residential data network. He was able to assemble a series of these videos on a variety of topics that represented the standard of work he sought his techs to maintain. He simply provided them with the videos to view themselves and review with him after.
  • Time Saving Diagnostic Tool – That same integrator, while in the process of assembling those videos, stumbled across a video where a tech was demonstrating a tool called the Low Voltage Pro (by Triplett) with a feature called a Port Blink Cable Detection feature. Basically, you can plug in one end of a mystery cable and the port it is connected to will blink slowly to show you where it is connected. He said this will save his teams hours in a rewire or upgrade installation.
  • A ‘Make You A Client Hero’ Tool – Another integrator installed GPS systems on all of their trucks. Initially, this was just to log when the vehicles left in the morning and returned in the evening. But they discovered a hidden benefit to having the ability to track their crews at any time – improved customer service. When a customer calls with a service issue, the manager can find the closest crew and direct them to the customer on their way returning to the facility, thereby offering almost instant service. This has become so popular with customers, it has elevated their reputation in the markets they serve.
  • A ‘Sell More-Sell Faster’ Tool – Using a program called Bluebeam, a pdf markup software utility, one integrator has dramatically compressed their sales process – often times to just one meeting with the client to score a deal. Using Bluebeam, the salesman can scan in, or otherwise import, the clients architectural blueprints and instantly begin adding system icons right on the screen in front of the client. With drag-and-drop convenience, it’s easy to try different layouts, add systems, remove systems, etc. The software keeps a running total of the budget, helping the customer decide whether to add another room or perhaps a landscape audio solution. By including the client in the process, the deal gets done much faster.

These are just a few of the clever tips from integrators. Check out the full story on Residential Systems website by clicking here…