Stanley invests in fire training

Aims to have 75+ new NICET-certified employees by end of 2008
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Wednesday, October 1, 2008

NAPERVILLE, Ill.--As part of a company-wide effort to invest in employee training, Stanley Convergent Security executives unveiled here an initiative called On Fire, whereby roughly 75 sales and operations staff members will become AFAA- and NICET-certified by the end of 2008, with that number increasing into 2009.

Teaming with the Automatic Fire Alarm Association, Stanley sketched an ambitious itinerary to bring Michael Baker, AFAA training director, to 12 regional sites between April 21 and July 19, with each site training on AFAA certification, NICET certification, and GE product certification over the course of a week, then taking the required tests immediately, with Stanley paying for special NICET testing at their own facilities.

“We realized that the fire alarm market is changing,” said Felix Gonzalez, vice president of strategic initiatives and business development for Stanley. “There are more code requirements every day.”

Further, “a lot of people look at just the operations side of things, where just the installer is certified, but we wanted our sales people to be knowledgeable and certified as well,” he said. As with the company’s newly announced IT Matters program (see accompanying story, page 17), the goal became to have a sales staff member and an operations staff member certified with the AFAA on code requirements and NICET certified by the end of 2008. Stanley CSS started with 45 associates with NICET certification already, and has added 38 staff members in the first half of 2008, with an expectation of at least another 30 before year’s end.

“This was a strategic move for us,” said Tony Byerly, chief operations officer at Stanley CSS.

“We do a ton of fire today, but we have room for growth in that space,” he said. Especially important is the RMR-related fire work, the residual services and inspections. “Having sales guys knowing the codes, they can educate someone with a fire alarm of the need for testing and inspection, the need for maintenance, even when the electrical contractor wins the initial business,” Byerly said.