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Select the Right Integrated Technology Company

September 6, 2018

How to Find the Right Integrated Technology Company

It can be a minefield trying to select the right integrated home technology expert to design and install your integrated home technology system.

The reality is that there are a plethora of home automation companies out there – good, bad and ugly – and of course, you want to make sure you get one of the good ones!

Questions to Ask

To help you, we’ve got our Design & Technology Director, to reveal the questions he would ask if he were vetting an integrated technology company to work on his home.

  1. What happens after the install if any equipment stops working?

With technology, it’s normal to expect some troubleshooting, and at luxury level, this needs certain experience and expertise.  You also want a luxury AV company who are proactive with maintenance and servicing your equipment regularly to ensure optimal performance.

  1. What guarantees do you provide on equipment installed?

All manufacturers offer a warranty on their products, however this can range from 1-5 years, or in somecases be a lifetime warranty – ask about specific guarantees on the equipment being proposed.
I’d also recommend asking them how they deal with the labour element of in-warranty repairs, SONA offer what we believe to be a unique promise – where we extend our warranty to match the manufacturers.  Read about the SONA guarantee.

  1. Can I see examples of your cable terminations?

In this industry, we go all geeky about wires and cables. Sad I know! Any company worth its’ salt in the luxury AV industry is so proud of their cable terminations they regularly showcase them. The truth is, sometimes what you can’t see (the wires) is a strong indicator about the care and attention a company will put into every element of your install.  Behind the scenes standards are the ‘real’ indicator of quality.

  1. Where did you gain your experience?

It can be a good idea to find out how many years of experience the company has, and how it was gained.  For instance, working as an Electrician or Security Installer, whilst helpful, does not make someone an expert in integrated home technology.  We send our guys on training roughly every couple of months as luxury technology moves fast!

  1. Do you have any clients I can call for a reference?

SONA has long-standing relationships with our clients.  Our installs go way beyond just completing the project.  We look after clients for years, whether it’s updates, upgrades, changes or new homes.  If a company can’t pick up the phone to a client to get a reference, I’d question what after-care they provide.

  1. Are they a member of CEDIA?

CEDIA is the international trade association for over 3,700 member companies worldwide who design, manufacture, and install technology for the home.

Whilst there will be plenty of good home technology companies who aren’t members, it can be a good place to start and also ensures that the company you are dealing with has appropriate insurance in place.

  1. Where do you build your racks?

SONA has a dedicated off-site rack build facility.  Usually sites are dusty and dirty and these are conditions technology does not get along with.  The last thing we want to do is compromise your brand new equipment before it’s even been installed by building our racks on-site.
It’s also virtually impossible to achieve the same standard onsite as in a dedicated clean workshop facility.