Timelines - When will your new AVL gear be installed and ready to use?

Posted on Jul 11, 2022 8:15:00 AM

You have an AVL project. You select MediaMerge as your AVL integrator.. We start working together to iron out the details, and finally, the proposal is accepted and your project gets under way… Now what? When will everything be ready to use?

It’s a common question, but unfortunately, gone are the days of overstocked shelves, next day delivery or clearance sales. In the current supply chain crisis, wireless microphones have year-long backorders. Audio consoles are delayed 6-9 months and some of the the required peripherals (particularly Dante-capable devices/cards) are nearly impossible to come by, with no ETAs provided for the future. LED wall processors are in short supply. Right now, lighting fixtures and control boards are literally being redesigned to make use of the few parts available. Some manufacturers are even re-releasing previous generation product lines to make use of older analog components that don’t require the out-of-stock chipsets.

Some manufacturers have even stopped taking orders altogether, while others constantly revise shipping updates of “by the end of the month” - which they’ve been saying for 6+ months now… So what do you do?

For the moment the only option is to wait. Unfortunately, that’s an all-too-real answer right now. But that’s not super-informative, so let’s look at this another way.

When should you start the planning process?

That answer depends on the type of project. Realistically, there are 3 types of projects.

  • Updates/Upgrades
  • Renovations/Remodels
  • Ground-up New Construction

Let’s work our way backwards from the Project Completion Date, aka “New Gear Day”. This is when all equipment is installed and is being used for the first time in service or training. For us, this is Day 0, and we work backwards from there.

Beginning an AVL Upgrade Project

Your system is beginning to show signs of its age. Components are worn out and you’re glad every time the system boots up correctly the first time. It’s time for an upgrade.

Realistically, we encourage people to begin the conversation with MediaMerge about updates and upgrades a full year in advance. This gives us both time to thoroughly explore options together and develop several viable approaches. However, conversations certainly need to happen with at least six months notice. That allows time for a full System Design to be developed, a Proposal to be drafted and revised and for your church’s administrative approval process. Since you’re already holding services in a functional space (you’re not building or remodeling the structure itself), the timeline for Upgrades generally looks like the following:

Initial Conversation,
Gather Information, Start Design
12 Months Out
Submit Proposal, Review & Tweak 9 Months Out
Design Finished, Contract Signed,
Gear Ordered
8 Months Out
Receive and Configure Gear. 6 Weeks Out
Install Gear, Team Training 1 to 3 Weeks Out
New Gear Day #NGD Day 0

 

Beginning a Building Renovation Project

If the physical structure is under renovation, MediaMerge will also need to consult with subcontractors from other trades. During a full renovation, there will be architects, electricians, HVAC technicians, plumbers, data/networking technicians, painters and construction workers all subcontracting for a general contractor. There may also be interior designers and decorators who work directly for the church, not to mention any committees that are required to vote and provide approvals.

The larger the project and the more subcontractors involved, the longer this process will take.

Planning Phase, Initial Conversation with Church, Architect and General Contractor 24 Months Out
Start Design, Review AVL needs with Architect and General Contractor 18 Months Out
Present initial budget Figures 12 Months Out
Submit Proposal, Review & Tweak 9 Months Out
Design Finished, Contract Signed,
Gear Ordered
8 Months Out
Receive and Configure Gear. 6 Weeks Out
Install Gear, Team Training 1 to 3 Weeks Out
New Gear Day #NGD Day 0

 

Starting a New Construction Project

Every entity conceivable is involved with a ground-up, new construction project. In a perfect world, there’s a cohesive plan on paper between all of the trades before ground is broken and trees are cleared. This ensures that conduit is laid with precision before concrete is poured, and structural engineers can review and stamp floorplans before work begins. Running into structural issues or conflicts can quickly become costly and bring work to a halt.

The larger the project and the more subcontractors involved, the longer the process will take.

Planning Phase, Initial Conversation with Church, Architect and General Contractor 24 Months Out
Start Design, Review AVL needs with Architect and General Contractor 18 Months Out
Present initial budget Figures 12 Months Out
Submit Proposal, Review & Tweak 9 Months Out
Design Finished, Contract Signed,
Gear Ordered
8 Months Out
Receive and Configure Gear. 6 Weeks Out
Install Gear, Team Training 1 to 3 Weeks Out
New Gear Day #NGD Day 0

 

Takeaways

  • Start the conversations early. If you’re talking internally about a potential project, connect with MediaMerge. It’s never too early.
  • Give yourself time to explore possibilities. With so many different products and options available, “This is the only way” is rarely the answer. There are choices, features and options to consider. Provide enough margin, so that education can preempt decision-making.
  • Understand that alternatives may be necessary. If you have a strict timeline, specific product lines may not be available in time. We may have to substitute for similar brands or features to get you what you need quickly.
  • When backorders stack up, so does our install calendar. At any given moment, we may have churches that have been waiting for 6+ months for the exact same equipment you just ordered today. Generally, equipment becomes available in batches, which means the “project floodgate” may open up and force us to figure out how to get 6 months of orders/projects completed ASAP.
  • Continue keeping up with Preventative Maintenance. The best way to avoid an emergency is to inspect, maintain and clean the gear you’re already using.

To continue learning, check out Building Renovations: Creating an AVL Budget.

Get the conversation started today

Whether your church is in the initial phases of conversations, just dreaming or in dire need of an upgrade, let us know today! We love the relational aspects of our roles and enjoy being a part of the conversation.

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Topics:Worship AVL Technology

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