Training and skills development is important not just for new entrants to the information and communications technology (ICT) industry, but also for veterans of the trade. New technologies, techniques, and tools are always under development to make an ICT pro’s workday more efficient and productive.
We’re grateful to several organizations for submitting their professional-development programs for consideration in the 2023 Cabling Innovators Awards. And we’re pleased to provide detail on these programs, which our judging panel deemed worthy of recognition.
CPI Training Center
Chatsworth Products’ (CPI) Training Center goes “above and beyond by providing innovative education and training solutions for our valued employees, partners, and customers,” the company explains. The Drive Forward webinar series is designed to keep you ahead of the game, CPI adds. “Immerse yourself in cutting-edge trends and industry thought leadership delivered straight to your screen. From emerging technologies to visionary insights, our webinars are the ultimate resource to stay in sync with the ever-evolving ICT landscape.”
The CPI Training Center also includes state-of-the-art Customer Experience Centers located in CPI facilities worldwide. “Our industry-leading experts will guide you through immersive, in-person sessions on ICT solutions and industry-specific topics,” the company points out. “It’s an unparalleled opportunity to learn firsthand from the best in the field.”
The Knowledge Vault is CPI’s online training center. The learning management system puts the user in control; it is accessible from any mobile device, offering a vast selection of courses that empower users to achieve ICT goals. Users can download essential documents, earn course certificates, and enhance their knowledge and skills at their own pace.
“CPI proudly offers BICSI-certified training courses through the Knowledge Vault at no charge,” the company says. “Elevate your expertise with industry-recognized certifications that open doors to new opportunities … We collaborate with industry leaders to drive innovation forward.”
Fluke Networks’ Certified Cabling Test Technician Program
Fluke Networks’ Certified Cabling Test Technician (CCTT) program, which has graduated more than 10,000 individuals, provides training for technicians certifying and troubleshooting installed twisted-pair and fiber-optic cabling systems.
“Customers are more frequently requiring certification for technicians to be hired for some or all their projects,” Fluke Networks said when describing the CCTT program. “In a recent study by Fluke Networks, 67% of respondents report that CCTT certification was required on all or some of their jobs. And the 2022 salary survey revealed that CCTT technicians earn up to 27% more than non-certified technicians.”
More than 90% of those who responded to Fluke Networks’ survey said the BICSI continuing education credits they received from the CCTT course were important to them, and the program increased their understanding of cabling and cable testing, as well as making them better at troubleshooting.
The Standards Explorer
Standards are the backbone of ICT. While the adoption of industry-standard practices and principles has always been essential to ensure compliance, performance and the support of future applications, exploding data rates and the need for reliable network performance make it even more important for manufacturers, network designers, installers and other ICT professionals to understand and implement the latest standards.
Recognizing that many users find standards information to be confusing, hard to find and difficult to stay up to date on changes, the TIA’s Fiber Optics Technology Consortium (FOTC) has created the FOTC Standards Explorer, a free online database that serves as a resource for anyone who wants to learn more about multimode and single-mode media, infrastructure, and application standards.
The Standards Explorer supports a complete library of IEEE 802.3 singlemode and multimode applications. The web resource is easy to navigate with an unparalleled collection of pertinent application summary information, network interface descriptions, optical fiber cabling characteristics and key application capability information. Content on the Standards Explorer is updated as Standards and projects evolve.
The Standards Explorer’s next phase, which will be released in Q4 2023, will cover TIA media and infrastructure standards.
The FOTC’s goals with the Standards Explorer are to increase Standards awareness, provide resource accessibility to all companies and individuals and support compatible network architectures and cabling infrastructure deployments between all users across all platforms. The information on the Standards Explorer will aid designers with planning, consultants with understanding emerging technologies, installers with best practices, end users with cabling specification decisions, and manufacturers with product compliance.
The FOTC has long been recognized as a source of reliable, peer-reviewed, vendor-neutral information concerning optical fiber networks and associated technologies. FOTC’s membership consists of leading fiber optic cable, component and electronics manufacturers committed to advancing faster and more efficient ICT solutions. The consortium’s mission emphasizes optical fiber media, testing, application and technology education through development of white papers, webinars and other learning resources and participation in industry conferences. By bringing current standards information to the industry in a free, easily accessible format, the FOTC hopes to make it easier for its constituents in the evolving deployment of fiber-based networks.
The Wesco Innovation Center
Wesco has opened a new Innovation Center to provide physical collaborative workspaces that accelerate innovation. This new facility in Glenview, Illinois is designed to bring end-user customers, integrators, product suppliers and technology providers together to connect, collaborate and create. The space provides a single destination for customers to interact with live demonstrations, engage with technical subject matter experts, find answers to critical project questions, and test concepts and solutions before deploying them.
The Innovation Center is equipped with the latest technologies to support accelerating customer needs around electrification, automation and IoT, green energy and grid modernization, and 24/7 connectivity and security. The space is modular and customizable to foster deep dive discussions around customers’ unique business needs. It is a place where problem solving and design thinking thrive, and where ideas can become reality. The Glenview Innovation Center is the latest addition to Wesco’s global network of innovation facilities, with locations in Mexico, Brazil, Ireland, England and India.
This first of its kind design facility showcases best in class installation practices in a variety of installation environments for Smart Building, Smart Data Center and Smart Industrial facilities with IoT use cases for energy management, health and safety and space optimization.