Clint HoffmanClint Hoffman, CTS®, VP of Marketing for Kramer U.S., manufacturer of signal management solutions, is a firm believer in education — for the good of the entire AV industry. "Raising the level of knowledge of everyone in the industry is an advantage to everyone,” he says. “The whole industry benefits. If you raise the knowledge base you’ll improve the outcome."

From his company's perspective, a better-educated dealer base and more knowledgeable end users means less technical support calls and time better spent on developing and improving products.

For several years, Kramer Electronics has included training as an integral part of its business. It offers a range of AV-related courses both at its headquarters in Clinton, New Jersey, and regionally, at numerous locations across the United States. It also provides onsite training for organizations. Its training and education arm, Kramer Academy, recently relaunched its AVIXA training program, which provides, via a licensing arrangement with AVIXA, the popular introductory Essentials of AV course and three-day CTS Prep and CTS-D Prep classes.

"We have the ability to extend the reach of a course by taking the classes out on the road, to Chicago, Nashville, Orlando, San Jose … anywhere there is a demand," says Hoffman, an AVIXA University Adjunct Faculty member who currently serves on AVIXA’s Exhibitor Committee and Exhibitor Steering Committee. The primary benefit of the trainings, he says, is that attendees can learn in a classroom setting (as opposed to online) at a location convenient to their place of work, or one that involves minimal travel.

"We find that there is a lot of value in the in-person experience when it comes to learning. Especially with the CTS Prep classes, you can do the training in a cohesive and coherent manner, then go and take the test immediately afterward. It avoids the kinds of delays that can happen if you’re trying to do the class online, fitting it in around a busy work schedule."

"We've come up with a cost-effective and convenient way of providing the CTS-Prep and CTS-D Prep classes to AV professionals," says Hoffman. "This type of training is invaluable and provides the fundamentals for anyone working in this industry. If you know your fundamentals you can do your job more effectively, and that benefits everyone."

Naturally, the vast majority of Kramer employees are CTS-certified, he adds. "Our new HQ in New Jersey has a beautiful training facility. We invite all our employees and new hires there to get the required certifications."

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