Audiovisual Quality Control Archives - Level 3 Audiovisual

Audiovisual Quality Control

Save Money in the Long Run with an AV9000 Certified AV Integrator

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If you’ve ever invested in technology only to learn later that it needs to be rewired, reconnected, or even replaced, you know that can be both frustrating and expensive. You may end up spending more by having to replace cables, tear out walls or ceilings, or even find a more effective solution altogether. It’s especially discouraging if you hired a company to help but you still didn’t get the results you needed.

If that’s happened to you, you’re not alone. According to The Association for Quality in Audio Visual Technology, Inc. (AQAV), poor quality AV solutions and integration costs more than $15 billion a year worldwide in rework, lost hours, and repairs.

Safeguarding against such waste or inefficiency is difficult when you’re not an audiovisual expert—that’s why you hired one in the first place. Learn How AV9000 Quality Assurance Can Help Your Organization

Choosing the Right Audiovisual Technology Partner

Fortunately, the AV industry has quality standards that help you choose the right company and ensure you make a wise investment. One such protection is AQAV, a non-profit corporation “dedicated to improving the operational art of designing and installing audiovisual technology.” Their AV9000 standards, training, certification, and audits ensure that all certified technology companies provide quality solutions that meet the same standards and follow the same best practices.

AQAV uses standards developed by organizations like AVIXA (the Audiovisual and Integrated Experience Association), SynAudCon (Synergetic Audio Concepts), AES (Audio Engineering Society), SMPTE® (Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers), to provide standards that assure consistent quality across industries and around the world.

So how do you know you’re choosing a company that cares about these standards and will follow them to make sure you don’t pay for their mistakes down the road? First, start by asking potential integrators some questions.

Questions to Ask

  • Is your company AV9000 certified?
    If the answer is no, ask why not and what quality standards they follow.
  • What certifications do your technicians have?
    Individual integrators should have certifications, like CTS (Certified Technology Specialist), or others that directly support their role.
  • Do you have a company quality policy and process? And how do you ensure your team adheres to them?
    Integration companies should have these in place and be able to share how they ensure quality solutions.
  • What if I have a question or concern during or after the installation?

The integration company should be able to provide you with a contact who will address all your questions and concerns at any point.

The Benefits of Partnering with an AV Integrator

The selection process is so important because you’ll see several benefits from working with a company that makes quality assurance a priority. They’ll work to:

  • Design and install systems for an optimal user experience and operability
  • Ensure your projects are completed on time thanks to standard processes
  • Catch defects in solutions before they are put into use
  • Follow up to resolve issues with your solutions
  • Prevent system failure so you have less downtime and fewer repairs
  • Provide upfront information about long-term maintenance and upgrade costs
  • Maximize your investment with efficient installation and prevention of issues down the road

Next Steps

Finding the right audiovisual technology partner is the first step to creating the environment you want at your organization—and in making sure your money doesn’t get wasted on poor quality solutions and services. Learn more about why an AQAV-certified audiovisual integrator will help you get the results you want by exploring this whitepaper.

AV Technology Warranty and Maintenance 101

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AV Technology Upkeep – From Service Warranties to SLAs 

If your presentation system stops working four days before an in-house conference, you likely have better ways to spend your time than digging up warranty information and troubleshooting the source of the problem.

Researching technology investments can be a hassle, but managing and maintaining them for years can be a big commitment. How do you ensure that your audiovisual (AV) equipment, in particular, runs smoothly for years to come? You don’t have a crystal ball to tell you what’s going to go wrong, but the next best thing is to partner with a service provider that will make sure you have the right plans and agreements in place.

When a customer purchases and installs new technologies, they will receive warranty information and offers to maintain their new system. The customer, the manufacturer, and the service provider are three sides of the triangle that will keep your equipment running optimally. However, “that triangle is sometimes difficult to understand,” says Mark Teifert, Director of Service and Support at Level 3 Audiovisual. Buyers may not know what’s included in warranties or who will be responsible for what. Here is a simple breakdown of terms to make sense of it all and feel confident about the long-term care of your audiovisual investments.

 

What’s What

Here are some basic definitions of terms you are likely to encounter during a purchase discussion. It’s important to note that warranties can vary greatly, even among products from the same manufacturer. And contracts and service level agreements (SLAs) can always vary widely from provider to provider.

Warranty: The warranty is a commitment that the manufacturer provides to the buyer, detailing what they will repair or replace, under what conditions, and for what given length of time.

Maintenance Agreement: This agreement specifies the ongoing services a provider will perform for a customer.

SLA: This agreement spells out the services that a provider offers and their responsibilities.

Know the distinction between AV warranties and maintenance agreements.

What’s Included

Warranty: A warranty includes the specific timeframes covered as well as details of the hardware/software that will be repaired or replaced.

Maintenance Agreement: This includes information about what’s included in a preventative checkup and the frequency of those visits, and it could include other agreed-upon services like maintenance of device subscriptions.

SLA: This will include pricing, response times, the type of support provided, including remote, help desk, on-site, and break/fix. It can also set expectations for communication methods, as well as next steps and escalations.

Service Methods

Terms vary by provider, but an established provider will likely offer on-site service in most major cities and will partner with reputable providers in other areas. Some support may also come in the form of remote monitoring or phone and email support.

What Else a Service Provider Can Do

Even though the warranty is between the buyer and the manufacturer, a service provider can help you initiate a warranty claim. They can also keep track of equipment information, service dates and details, etc. so you don’t have to.

How to Use Your Service Agreements

Prevention goes a long way and can often keep issues from arising before they disrupt work at your company. With most maintenance agreements, there’s not a lot you have to do since the purpose of such a service is to take the burden off your organization. You probably want to be available during these calls in case the provider has questions or requires access to equipment.

If a service issue arises, you can contact your support team via their specified channel. Sometimes you may simply need help troubleshooting. In fact, complete breakdowns aren’t that common, and some of the most common issues need simple fixes like adjusting the power supply or resetting system reset.

Choosing a Service Provider

A quality service provider will be knowledgeable, experienced, accessible, and responsive. They will also be flexible in their offerings and in accommodating customer needs. They’ll be willing to answer your questions about their services and work with you to find solutions and services that meet your organization’s needs.

What to Expect from Level 3 Audiovisual
Level 3 Audiovisual provides a range of comprehensive support and maintenance services, customizing SLAs based on customer needs and goals. Even if there is not a Level 3 Audiovisual on-site technician in your geographic area, Level 3 Audiovisual has created partnerships with top-level service providers around the world to ensure the customer receives the same level of service and professionalism.

Even though the warranty is provided to the customer by the manufacturer, Level 3 Audiovisual will help customers figure out whether an issue is covered by the warranty and will even act as the go-between between the customer and manufacturer. The Service Department offers a range of services, from ongoing on-site support to help desk support for basic troubleshooting and a customer portal for resolving complex cases.

“At Level 3 Audiovisual, customer care is paramount,” adds Teifert. “That also includes what I consider customer comfort. So much is put into fixing the issue—whatever the issue is—and that’s important, but that’s only half of what we do. The other half of what we do is making sure that customer goes, ‘Ah, I know I’m in the hands of a professional—I know it’s going to get done.”

What’s Next                                                           

If you have more questions about the maintenance and support of AV solutions, check out our Service and Support page here.

AV9000 Quality Assurance & Training with Level 3 Audiovisual

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AV9000 – How Quality Assurance Is Changing The World of AV

Along with the productivity-boosting benefits of the increasingly connected technologies we use at work every day comes added complexity. Those sleek new videoconferencing, audio visual networking, video display, audio systems, and collaboration tools require a thoughtfully engineered system design that provides ease of use on the front end, while managing advanced hardware integration on the back end.

Given this rapid and ongoing advancement of audio visual technologies, the audio visual integration industry has recognized the need for a quality management system akin to the internationally recognized ISO-9000 standards that have proven successful in other technical and manufacturing fields.

Subsequently, the Association for Quality in Audio Visual Technology (AQAV) has developed the AV9000 standard. A complete system of audio visual quality assurance practices, AV9000 is improving the performance outcomes of enterprise AV across a multitude of applications.

What does AV9000 Compliant Mean?

The AV9000 quality assurance system provides metrics for audio video design and implementation, with checklists managing every key milestone of a project’s development. This establishes an auditable standard, which is intended to ensure quality, manage information, and bring about continual improvement throughout an organization’s practices.

AV9000 compliance means that an audio visual installer has adhered to this process, and is committed to providing customers with exactly what was ordered, on time, with no defects. The customer-centric focus of AV9000 installers shows a commitment to quality, training, and the ongoing management of best practices to get the job done right.

By establishing an AV9000 quality policy, procedures are systemized to ensure design and installation of AV systems that are complete, perform at levels as intended, and are ready for use by the client. Before delivery to customer facilities, project equipment is racked, terminated, tested, and commissioned according to checklists that verify every technical and user-related detail. From tightening screws and checking cable bend radiuses through to the complex technical analysis of microphone levels, video playback standards, and control systems implementation, every element is meticulously accounted for in a complete and operation-ready system.

How AV9000 Can Save Enterprise Clients Money

The quality assurance mechanisms provided by AV9000 can help to reduce costs associated with installing, using, and maintaining audio visual technology. A reduction in project delays and a decreased number of fixes required after system completion means that a facility can be used more quickly and with less downtime for service and maintenance work.

Audio video quality assurance also helps to eliminate errors and omissions discovered at the last-minute, which prevents the added cost of rushed orders and additional labor hours. This also reduces problems further down the road, when little-used functions are needed for use, since all performance deliverables were addressed from the beginning.

The streamlined processes used by AV9000 installers can also reduce the amount of operator and user training time, as the system is ready to go as intended from the start, and users only have to be trained once. No need for further instruction when unanticipated changes have to be made.

AV9000 Training For Media Managers & Enterprise Level IT/AV

Bring the quality assurance standards of AV9000 to your own audio visual practice with Certified Quality Technician – AV (CQT) training provided by Level 3 Audiovisual. Gain the skills to conduct audio visual quality assurance audits, and discover the benefits of improved systems operations and increased end-user satisfaction.

Through Level 3 Audiovisual, corporate media managers, enterprise AV managers, and AV integrators who want to be trained in AV9000 will now have a West Coast option rather than flying to the East coast where AQAV is headquartered. Click the link for more info on getting your AV9000 Certification through Level 3 Audiovisual.

 

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