For its commitment to fostering personal and professional growth among its employees, Automation Arts was named a 2022 Excellence in Business award winner in the Talent Development category.
Automation Arts knew that education and professional development were the keys to finding and retaining talent and growing the company. But they wanted to do more than provide basic industry training. They wanted to empower their greatest asset—their employees—to feel like they were ready to make decisions from the very start of their career and help them become the very best possible versions of themselves.
To accomplish this, the integrator decided to invest in two professional development initiatives.
First, in 2021, it created Automation Arts University (A2U). The goal of this initiative is to train individuals who have no industry experience and prepare them to join the world of commercial integration.
Prospective candidates can complete the program to qualify for an installation apprenticeship. It’s a great way for them to learn more about AV and get hands-on experience to make sure it’s a good career fit.
Through the A2U apprenticeship, participants spend four to six weeks job shadowing all company positions, including sales, engineering, project management, installation, and service, to build a solid understanding of each role and its contribution to success. From there, participants spend the majority of their time developing the hands-on skills necessary to become a Level 1 technician, including the use of tools, jobsite safety guidelines, installation basics, and appropriate terminology. Working with Automation Arts’ production team, participants learn what it takes to be proficient in AV system installation.
In addition to creating a new pathway to the industry, Automation Arts also wanted to improve its workplace culture to boost retention. To do so, it partnered with 365 Nation’s team of consultants to create a diversity, equity, and inclusion plan that supports its employees and makes Automation Arts a more diverse and inclusive place to work.
In addition, the company teamed up with the Boys and Girls Club of Dane County to build relationships that help feed participants into A2U’s training program. The Boys and Girls Club developed McKenzie Regional Workforce Center, which teaches young individuals about trade skills, such as electrical/low voltage, plumbing, carpentry, welding, and machine operation. From there, those students can move on to A2U if they choose to explore the AV industry.
“Automation Arts wants to focus on leading from the front and set an example for creating diversity in the industry and being active in the community to help support local economies and neighborhoods,” says Shaun Trudell, president and owner of Automation Arts.
With the company’s investments in A2U and DEI plans, Automation Arts is well on its way to becoming an industry frontrunner when it comes to talent recruitment and development.