CEDIA supports its members with new initiative ’“ CEDIASTRONG

In response to the global Covid-19 pandemic, CEDIA is today rolling out a new initiative called CEDIASTRONG which will supply tools and services to empower, educate, and inspire members through the coronavirus crisis and beyond.

CEDIASTRONG will provide members with free financial planning tools and services, technical training and webinars, career planning resources, online business roundtable discussions, and marketing content that members can use to promote their services locally. 

In addition to these resources, CEDIA is also planning to establish a CEDIATSTRONG Fund to provide financial assistance to members in need with the goal of awarding grants later next year.  

Tabatha O’Connor, CEDIA’s president and CEO told HiddenWires: “CEDIASTRONG was born out of the Covid-19 pandemic that we are all going through together. It’s a rallying cry to reach out to our members to say that we are at our best when we stick together, no matter what the situation might be. We want to address the challenges that businesses are facing. As people are hunkering down, business owners are looking for ways to address some their business strategies and as a professional organisation, we want to help them understand what’s available to them.”

The organisation has already waived all fees on current online education resources so that members can work on various skills during the lockdown period. CEDIA is also hosting two new webinars each week, tied to whitepapers and podcast topics. 

CEDIASTRONG will bring members various sessions to help companies to realise what financial help is available to them. Enlisting a range of financial and legal advisors, the weekly sessions will aim to share expertise and advice with members free of charge. 

Additionally, CEDIA’s Resource Centre provides financial, legal, regulatory and government information from across the world to help clearly outline what is available to members during this time of difficulty. 

Career planning is another section within CEDIASTRONG. With many companies having to furlough or lay off staff, the career planning resource helps keep those skilled workers to stay engaged with the industry by giving them what they need to prepare to get back into the industry once the crisis ends. It will help with general career planning, building a CV, and refreshing their knowledge. 

CEDIASTRONG will also be hosting regional roundtable discussions, new online events that will bring integrators and manufacturers together to share insights about how to conduct business in unusual times, how best to prepare for recovery, and how to market services during this time. It will also be a chance for them to understand regionally what their peers are doing that they might not have thought about. 

Marketing assets will also be available to help members to promote themselves locally to generate new business opportunities in their local markets. 

“As we launch this new initiative, we are seeing members taking advantage of the programmes we have already put out there,” explained O’Connor. “Looking at some stats this week, we have already had 4150 new registrations from 32 countries for our online education. We are doing this across the globe and the resources we are putting out are so valuable and members are taking it in. The feedback we are getting is extremely positive.”

Once the pandemic is over, CEDIA has outlined plans to establish a CEDIASTRONG Fund to provide financial assistance to members in need with the goal of accepting donations later this year and awarding grants to individuals and businesses sometime in 2021. 

“The CEDIASTRONG Fund is ambitious but we feel very passionate about it,” she continued. “Once we get beyond the eye of the storm, we want to go through the process of establishing this. It’s in very early stages but we see there’s a need for a fund in case something like this happens again. We have so many displaced workers right now, so looking towards the future, this will help us to help them through that.

The organisation is looking to many resources to receive donations towards the funds, including approaching larger companies, financial institutions, and vendors that the organisation already works with. 

When the fund is established, CEDIA will then build a criteria for applications for grants supported by a committee who will review the applications.