LAN/voice cabling integral part of project

Your editorial in the June issue of Cabling Installation & Maintenance really struck home (see "Above average all the time," June 1999, page 7). The National Accounts Department at Henkels & McCoy Inc. manages national cable-installation projects for a wide range of customers, both commercial and government. We use our 21 regional offices that specialize in structured-cabling installations. Approximately 50% of our work is commercial roll-out work, doing small "cookie-cutter" installations at a

Sep 1st, 1999

Your editorial in the June issue of Cabling Installation & Maintenance really struck home (see "Above average all the time," June 1999, page 7). The National Accounts Department at Henkels & McCoy Inc. manages national cable-installation projects for a wide range of customers, both commercial and government. We use our 21 regional offices that specialize in structured-cabling installations. Approximately 50% of our work is commercial roll-out work, doing small "cookie-cutter" installations at a national customer`s many sites. The other 50% are large single sites for national customers` office or plant locations.

The roll-out work is typically centered around LAN/voice equipment upgrades and is usually well-planned. The larger sites, however, are typically new office or plant space or refurbished office space. Certainly some office cabling is driven by equipment upgrades alone, but a majority of this work is included in a larger picture. In this latter scenario, the communications infrastructure is often overlooked until late in the planning phase.

Not only is the LAN/voice cabling spec often overlooked until late in the planning phase, but also it is often not awarded as part of the overall construction contract. The LAN/voice cabling contract is usually awarded after other trades have begun their work. Therefore, it is ignored during scheduling sessions, and important milestones are missed in the project timeline.

How many times do cabling contractors arrive on site to find the dropped-ceiling grid in place and then hear complaints that they are holding up the ceiling inspection? Or receive a project timeline that shows communications closets being ready much too late for all terminations and testing to be done properly? Or realize that the last weekend before occupancy will be a mad scramble as modular furniture arrives late?

The obvious solution to this is that customers, their architects and designers, and general contractors must be made aware that LAN/voice cabling is an integral part of their overall project

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