Intimately Global – PSNI Takes ‘Built for You’ Ethos to the Next Level

Chris Miller, PSNI Executive Director
PSNI's Executive Director, Chris Miller (Image credit: PSNI)

As the world’s foremost professional association of integrators, manufacturers, distributors, and service partners, the 200-location strong PSNI Global Alliance has been the go-to source for AV customers since its founding in 1986. But technologies—and client needs—have changed dramatically since then. Add to that a once-in-a-century pandemic and its ripple effects for travel and supply chains. Those are some of the drivers behind PSNI’s new website, equipped with an intuitive end-user resource, and their client-centric motto, “Built for You.”

The PSNI team believes its standards-based approach is elevating the entire AV industry while offering a collaborative counterpoint to the business models of yesteryear. 

Built For You

The new messaging is “the cusp of what the PSNI Global Alliance is all about,” Miller said. And the customer-focused mission is embodied by PSNI’s 200-plus Certified Service Providers (CSPs, AKA partners) who deliver AV services to their clients using the highest levels of quality standards

“Our tagline reflects our mission and our culture,” said Christopher Miller, PSNI Global Alliance’s Executive Director. “From forming the Alliance and realizing that customers need services outside of their borders, to supporting integrators as they ensure the best end results, we are indeed ‘Built for You’. We also recognize that end-user needs are changing.”

Updating the Ecosystem

The ongoing marriage of AV with IT, plus the continuing trend to remote collaboration accelerated by COVID-19 lockdowns, has motivated the PSNI to update its CSP ecosystem.

“We’re seeing increasing customer demand for solutions that support more Unified Communications and Collaboration (UCC) than what was traditionally offered by a typical AV integrator,” Miller said. To address this demand, the PSNI Global Alliance is assessing its current CSP ecosystem to see which skills and resources its members currently possess, and to seek out new strategic or vendor partners to fill in any gaps.

“The AV industry is evolving, and it's not fully linear anymore,” said Miller. “The PSNI Global Alliance recognizes that external trades in the electrical and other industries offer unique skills that can help us deliver the total solutions that customers want today. So, we are forming alliances outside of the AV industry to provide those solutions.”

 The result: PSNI is poised to leverage the collective power of its vast network to face challenges today—and in the future.

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Certification and Education are Essential

When it comes to providing “Built for You” AV solutions anywhere on the planet, the PSNI Global Alliance is mindful that doing so using properly trained and certified professionals is a must—no matter where in the world the project may be located. This is why the Alliance insists that all of its members attain CSP status by achieving PSNI Global Deployment Certification.

To be registered as CSPs, the PSNI Global Alliance’s members demonstrate a mastery of global audiovisual deployment practices and network resources as outlined in PSNI-exclusive Global Deployment and Services handbooks. This certification program encourages members to assess and improve their skill knowledge and understanding of multi-destination project and support needs, including how to understand and address common issues that characteristically come with multi-site, multi-country deployment and service.

“Certification proves that the individual, as well as their organization, meets and exceeds this vision by demonstrating their expertise to deliver a standardized approach to global solutions,” Miller noted.

In performing this global certification function, PSNI is seeking to supplement—not supplant—industry organizations like AVIXA and the Association for Quality in Audio Visual Technology (AQAV). “We are big supporters of AVIXA,” Miller enthused. “We're supporters of AQAV, because they teach skills and a set of skills that are very important to the industry to design and install the best systems. What we do is certify for engagement.”

“We have a great team and a corporate culture where everybody jumps in and does everything as needed. Add the quality of our 200 members and the services they offer to the world, and we have what it takes to properly serve AV clients wherever they may be. As our motto says, the PSNI Global Alliance really is ‘Built for You.’”

Chris Miller

The Best in the Business

Not everyone has what it takes to attain the status of a PSNI CSP. In fact, when it comes to the many applications that are made by integrators, manufacturers, distributors, and service partners around the globe to join the PSNI Global Alliance, only the top 5% make the cut.

This exclusivity is tied to the Alliance’s goal of offering top-quality AV services to clients, no matter where they may be based, or what kind of AV project they need to provision. At the same time, the Alliance does its very best to ensure a diversity of skills among its members, plus a range of locations worldwide.       

“We want the best of the best,” said Miller. “We're very fortunate, through the professional relationships within our peer group, to be able to select from many of the best around the planet."

Client Benefits

The combination of global relationships, certified technology standards, and professional standards offer a wealth of advantages for PSNI clients. This is because members of the PSNI Global Alliance can leverage their ties to deliver superior customer service anywhere.

The worldwide network ensures that clients get the expertise they need through a vetted local integrator who knows the local language, cultural customs, culture barriers and tariff/tax requirements. This expertise is always governed by a single standard of excellence, thanks to the Alliance’s monitoring processes.  

The bottom line: “Collaboration across the network extends the capabilities of each individual members and delivers you a more comprehensive and reliable result,” Miller said.

Serving All Stakeholders

How do end users and onsite technology managers fit into the equation? As Hailey Klein, PSNI Global Alliance’s Director of Marketing and Communications, explained: “We'll provide exactly what you need to communicate, collaborate, and inspire to achieve your AV project goals, and most importantly, to do this anywhere. Not everyone needs a global deployment, but some people do. Whatever the circumstances, we can offer support between floors or across borders.”   

Paying Off During the Pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic stalled or stopped cross-border travel. Fortunately, the Alliance’s global membership base was able to help many clients win bids and fulfill their AV projects despite border closures. For example, if a U.S.-based PSNI member was unable to travel to Spain for a project, there wasn’t a problem. They just turned to a member within that country to help them fulfill the contract.

“We often used each other’s services because we couldn't get there,” said Miller. “Europe was challenging to get into, let alone to go from one EU country to another. Meanwhile, you couldn’t travel between Canada and the United States. So, having PSNI members who could count on each other really made a difference to their clients, and made sure work was still done despite the pandemic.”

Looking Forward, With Solidarity

At the time this article was written, the pandemic’s end seemed within reach but not yet certain. For the PSNI Global Alliance’s 200-plus locations business was starting to pick up, “but we’re not out of the woods yet,” Miller cautioned. Nevertheless, the solidarity among the Alliance’s members and staff, and their commitment to common certified standards, means that this group is ready to face whatever the future has to offer.

“We are really blessed here to have a team that works in lockstep,” Miller concluded. “We have a great team and a corporate culture where everybody jumps in and does everything as needed. Add the quality of our 200 members and the services they offer to the world, and we have what it takes to properly serve AV clients wherever they may be. As our motto says, the PSNI Global Alliance really is ‘Built for You.’”

Margot Douaihy, Ph.D.

Margot Douaihy, Ph.D., is a lecturer at Franklin Pierce University.