This 2022 association agenda was presented during the Annual Member Meeting at NSCA’s 24th annual Business & Leadership Conference.
It seems like a lifetime ago … but remember when 2020 was coming to a close? The prevailing thought (or joke) was that, with pandemic-ridden year in the rearview mirror, our worries would be behind us. That turned out not to be true—for the world and for the integration market.
NSCA’s focus is, of course, on you. The past year brought with it many business challenges related to the lingering pandemic, the supply chain, and the labor pool. It’s naïve to think that these business obstacles will disappear in the coming months; however, NSCA is well-positioned to support the industry in 2022 and beyond. We’ll continue to stay true to our mission: serving as the voice of the integrator, providing you with business resources, and being your trusted advisor.
There are many reasons for optimism in the NSCA Community. As our customers return to work or school and face new communication, security, and safety challenges, the expertise and solutions provided by integrators is invaluable. You have never been more mission-critical than you are in 2022.
NSCA believes it’s a great time to be an integration company leader. There are so many opportunities—despite the aforementioned obstacles, which create profitability challenges. The decisions made by integration company leaders in 2022 are vital.
This is your moment, and NSCA wants to help you seize it. Our resources, events, consultation, and strategic planning are all designed to help integration companies thrive.
We expect 2022 to continue to have many uncertain elements. NSCA—its staff, volunteers, and trusted partners—stands ready to address the most pressing issues you face. We want to make you aware of the valuable work going on at NSCA and, more importantly, how it will impact you.
First, however, we want to thank our valued members, who regularly leverage NSCA for business resources, advice, data, news, analytics, and workflow tools. We’re honored to help you manage issues that affect your organization and are proud to be your voice in matters that impact our industry.
NSCA is privileged to be the association you rely on for direction and guidance. We are your voice, your business resource, and your trusted advisor. In 2022, we are committed to enhancing and developing the best business climate possible for your company.
For this reason, we’re focusing the NSCA 2022 agenda on these key areas:
NSCA has always emphasized how vital back-office operations are to the success of an integration company, but they’re even more important in 2022. Integration companies are faced with profit-draining product delays and logistical trickiness on projects. Due to market competitiveness, you’re often paying higher rates to employees, including on-site technicians. This all chips away at margins and profitability. Through breakout sessions at the Business & Leadership Conference (BLC) and Pivot to Profit (P2P), webinars, roundtables, workshops, and exclusive research, NSCA wants to help members prioritize back-of-house operations just as much as end-user solutions.
Creating Ideal Workplaces
Integration company leaders are tasked with overcoming several unique employee retention challenges in 2022. An employee-favorable job market tempts top performers to jump ship for higher-paying, higher-level positions. Meanwhile, a pandemic-led shift in work culture led to an expectation for lasting flexibility. At BLC and beyond, NSCA works with integrators to create mutually beneficial work environments that reward employees and build productivity. It’s less about foosball tables in breakrooms and more about communal pride.
Elevating Cybersecurity Credentials
Customers are driving an essential shift for integrators. Virtually every vertical market is experiencing a significant uptick in demand for integrators to demonstrate cybersecurity credentials. Before adding AV, UCC, security, and life safety solutions that connect to their networks, customers are increasingly requiring contractors to provide proof of cybersecurity training, certification, and insurance. NSCA provides recommendations for integrators on pursuing cybersecurity credentials to avoid being left on the sidelines.
Redefine Talent Recruitment
Attracting and hiring workers remains a top challenge and barrier to growth and profitability for NSCA members. The already-high 20% turnover rate in sales and specialized technical staff roles is likely escalating as integrators compete for talent to get projects out of their pipelines. NSCA wants its members to take more ownership of developing prospects and internal candidates. Programs like NSCA’s Ignite can identify new pools of qualified candidates. Insight from the NSCA DEI Action Council can further expand recruitment opportunities and create better environments for growth of existing employees. Meanwhile, NSCA’s soon-to-be-released 2022 Compensation & Benefits Report will be an invaluable talent tool.
Vigilance About Codes, Regulations, and Compliance
The snowball effect of proposed laws and regulations that limit an integrator’s right to provide low-voltage (Power over Ethernet) solutions for customers shows no signs of slowing down in 2022. NSCA won’t let up in leading members through these challenges and working with the Connected Technologies Industry Consortium to advocate on behalf of the industry. In addition to low-voltage regulations, NSCA tracks bills related to cybersecurity, school safety (in conjunction with the Partner Alliance for Safer Schools, or PASS K-12), sustainability to help integrators play a bigger role in creating healthy buildings, and more. Use NSCA’s portal to track legislation that may impact your business.
Weighing Risks vs. Rewards
Many NSCA members are at a crossroads. They seem to have hit a business plateau and need to decide whether to invest in growth. They see the intense competition for projects and talent and wonder if it’s time to enter the mergers & acquisitions market. That same market competitiveness leads to weighing risks when it comes to costs and profitability. NSCA prioritizes helping integration company leaders weigh risks in 2022. Whether it’s through NSCA Strategic Planning, working with our Business Accelerators and Member Advisory Councilmembers, or learning from peers at BLC and P2P, NSCA is prepared to help members weigh risks vs. rewards.
None of the items in our NSCA 2022 agenda can happen without you. We sincerely thank each one of you for placing your confidence in NSCA. We look forward to helping you with your continued success.