Here at AGT, our A/V Integration practice is an essential part of our exceptional customer relationships and business success. Our team of A/V experts design, implement and manage innovative and future-proof collaborative environments that align with our clients’ business goals and objectives. We thought it would be beneficial for everyone to learn more about our A/V integration services from someone who is an expert on them, so here is a quick Q&A with our Director of A/V Integration, Ben Hitt.
Q: In your own words, what does A/V Integration mean as it relates to AGT?
A: A/V integration at AGT is all about the end user experience. It is putting in place tools that help our clients do their jobs better, or more effectively. Sometimes that means installing Video Conferencing systems for mental health facilities, others times it is as simple as installing small displays in huddle rooms so small teams can collaborate better.
Q: How does AGT manage collaborative environments once they are installed?
A: We have more or less two approaches to managing systems once they are installed. The first is reactive in nature and involves support from our folks at the help desk. It is the typical model of the customer calling to let us know there is a problem and us using our expertise to rectify a solution over the phone, or send a technician onsite to solve the problem. The second is proactive and involves our managed service personnel. The onsite personnel do weekly walkthroughs to make sure all the equipment is functioning properly, as well as field on-the-fly trouble calls about equipment.
Q: Can you briefly tell us about the design process for A/V systems? Is every project unique?
A: I would say that very rarely are two projects identical. When you are dealing with large customers that have a lot of conference rooms, you want the user experience and ease of use of the system to be consistent, so we try very hard to implement standards that help our clients meet this goal. We don’t want end users to have to learn how to use different types of rooms with different capabilities in each. We want them to be able to walk into any of the conference rooms and know how to use the room right away.
Q: What are some benefits of having A/V environments within an organization?
A: Several parts of an A/V system can benefit an organization more than they realize. In the case of video conferencing, it can be cost savings, convenience, and increased productivity from an all-in-one collaboration tool. A large client of ours was having issues with running out of meeting space and was getting complaints from users that there were never any meeting rooms available. They were considering building more meeting rooms or moving locations to accommodate this. Instead, we were able to implement scheduling panels outside the conference rooms, which forced users to check into their meetings. If the user did not check into the meeting within 15 minutes of the start time, the meeting was canceled and the room was then available for use. A simple change, but very effective at generating conference room availability.
Q: You’ve been a part of the A/V industry for years now. How has it changed?
A: As with a lot of current technology, it is moving to a more connected experience and many A/V departments are now being run by the IT department of the organization. There are also updates to the technology – tablets and BYOD are really starting to take off in the conference room.
Q: Tell us about your day-to-day activities at AGT.
A: Well this is a blog post and not a novel, so I’ll just say that I am a man of many hats. My day-to-day could be anything from installer, programmer, designer, project manager, to sales guy, etc.
Q: What is your favorite part of your job at AGT?
A: The chaos of it all. It is rarely the same thing twice. It keeps me on my toes and does not get boring.