by Jay Sachetti, Senior Marketing Manager, Connected Communities, Eaton’s Lighting Division
The site and area lighting environment can be complicated, often leaving electrical contractors wondering where to begin. When recommending, installing and maintaining site and area lighting controls, whether connected or non-connected, there are a number of considerations electrical contractors should be aware of to ensure they are saving and seeing benefits, and future-proofing their businesses.
First and foremost, electrical contractors must be knowledgeable about the current state of site and area lighting, the available offerings on the market and their current capabilities. The outdoor lighting market is expected to reach $14.2 billion by 2023 and with the growth of outdoor lighting comes an increasing number of companies in the outdoor lighting controls market – from start-ups to major organizations. And each organization has different offerings, strengths and capabilities.
Having a firm grasp on the current site and area lighting market, electrical contractors can then determine what offerings will deliver the most value to their own business and to their customers. Factors electrical contractors should consider include:
Connectivity – A number of companies offer network services and software that connect site and area lighting products to the internet. This allows facility managers to remotely manage lighting systems from a desktop or mobile app for on/off capabilities, dimming, energy monitoring, failure notifications and more.
Site and area lighting products that connect to the internet allow electrical contractors to offer innovative services to their customers such as a lighting monitoring service that utilizes connected lighting. This enables the electrical contractor to monitor the system remotely – beneficial for both the customer and the contractor by providing an ongoing revenue stream for the contractor and better engagement with the customer.
Flexibility and Integration – Many lighting manufacturers have a dedicated lighting control system and are well positioned to provide integrated solutions that are easy to deploy. In choosing any lighting control system, it is critical to find systems that utilize open standards in order to maximize current and future benefits. This helps ensure flexibility to integrate with other software and data sources from facility systems that are impacted by lighting. Integrated solutions, such as LED lighting with integrated security cameras, provide contractors with avenues into additional markets and the opportunity to expand their offerings. The consistent theme is that the ideal solution gives customers better choices and allows contractors to offer economical options that integrate with existing systems.
Site and area lighting controls provide an opportunity for electrical contractors to expand their service offerings. It’s important for electrical contractors to take the necessary steps to understand the site and area lighting environment because it can – and should – be viewed as an opportunity to build their bottom line, realize savings and deliver innovations to their customers.