Workforce development help has arrived

Two UK CEDIA members share how they learned about CEDIA’s NextGen Smart Home Career Toolkit, how they used it in a joint-presentation, and what they would say to those considering how it could work for them.

Richard Westmoreland, CEO of Stuart Westmoreland Ltd

Richard joined Stuart Westmoreland Ltd in 1999. He was the driving force for the company to enter the e-commerce and custom installation spaces. Since 2020, he’s been leading the company’s day-to-day operations. 

Alan Matthews, Founder & CEO of Automated Spaces

Automated spaces designs, installs, and supports smart home solutions, home cinemas, and assistive technology. Alan is passionate about assistive technology and has recently added it as a pillar service for the business. 

How are you connected with CEDIA?

Richard Westmoreland (RW): We celebrated our 20th year as a CEDIA member in January 2023. Over the years, we’ve been able to take advantage of the training, accreditation, and outreach services – they’ve been instrumental in our business. 

Alan Matthews (AM): We’ve been a member since 2016 and held various roles in different working groups. We’re also a CEDIA Member of Excellence. 

What were your initial impressions of CEDIA NextGen Smart Home Career Toolkit? 

RW: I first learnt about the NextGen Smart Home Career Toolkit in an email from CEDIA CEO Daryl Friedman in February 2023. I’d already had some brief discussions with Alan (Matthews) regarding opportunities to talk to local school children, and this seemed a great way to present the information to them. The presentation and the pointers for delivery were great building blocks for our presentation.

AM: I was having discussions with local schools back in 2020 that got put on the backburner due to COVID-19. At the CEDIA Awards in October 2022, [CEDIA Global President & CEO] Daryl Friedman asked if there were resources available to talk about the smart home sector, would everyone volunteer to talk at local schools? The next thing I know, the NextGen initiative was launched. When I looked at the collateral, I thought, “Oh, fantastic. Someone's done the heavy lifting for me. This is great.”  

How have you used NextGen? Have your impressions changed now that you’ve used it? 

RW: Yes, we were able to present to a local school in March 2023. The reception was good, and the children were engaged. I look forward to revisions to the initial presentation based on the feedback of those who’ve delivered it. I think it’ll be a great tool for awareness of our industry.

AM: Because we were talking to a local school, I felt it was appropriate to get another local smart home installer involved. I reached out to Richard [Westmoreland] to present as a unified front. We did our presentation for 80-100 students. A few stayed at the end to ask questions. Richard and I were enthused by the experience. I gave a presentation at the Leeds Tech Summit in April 2023 and the students reacted similarly. 

If someone is thinking about using the toolkit but not quite sure it would work for them, what would you tell them? 

RW: Talk to your local schools and explain that this industry is open to everyone. It offers something different to the usual employment avenues. The Toolkit provides a great springboard to be able to share information with minimal preparation. If the response you get is anything like ours, it’ll be deeply rewarding.

AM: Whoever is using the Toolkit should feel confident knowing they don't have to stick to the script on the slide deck. You can add your own content. The goal is to talk about your experiences and day-to-day job, so it can be relaxed. 

CEDIA NextGen: Smart Home Career Toolkit Box Out

The CEDIA NextGen: Smart Home Career Toolkit was released in February 2023 to support smart home industry employers who are interested in engaging potential new talent and increasing community awareness about their businesses and the local industry. The kit includes ready-to-use resources employers can present to colleges, trade schools, government agencies, community centres, and more.

Community outreach assets include:

  • Informative and energetic industry promotional video
  • Quick facts one sheet
  • Jobseeker brochure
  • Print-ready promotional poster
  • Classroom presentation for integrators
  • Regional presentations explaining the industry and viable career pathways and supplementary resources like videos, voiceovers, and salary survey results.

These resources make it easy for the CEDIA channel to give polished career fair and in-class presentations; educate career counsellors about the industry; and offer leave-behind assets for guidance offices, career centres and employment offices.

CEDIA NextGen: Smart Home Career Toolkit also includes resources for individuals looking to begin a career in the smart home industry, such as:

  • A guide to career pathways
  • Skills needed at each stage
  • Average salary ranges by title
  • A guide to relevant certifications and credentials

As the leading global authority on education, certification, research, standards, advocacy, and community awareness for the smart home industry, CEDIA has made a significant commitment to addressing the workforce development needs of the channel. Learn more and download CEDIA NextGen: Smart Home Career Toolkit for free at



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