April is National Home Inventory Month: Find out more
09 Dec 2021

Blogging – Are You Ready?

BloggingEach year we add new courses to the NICA curriculum. This year, we focused on blogging with Introduction to Blogging, which provides you with the framework and tools to create and write a blog. and recently we added Blogs – Creating and Marketing Your Content that includes the framework and tools to generate content and market your blog. 

Knowledgeable resources for ideas and information can be fellow NICA members. Read others’ blogs to learn from them, and periodically share one of their articles (remember to follow our Associate Members’ blogs, too!). Reading others’ material helps in many ways: 

  • Meet fellow members!
  • Possibly refer business to others throughout the country.
  • Gain information you might not have known.
  • Using someone else’s articles means you didn’t need to research and write it yourself.

Of course, when using others’ blog posts, always include a link to that specific blog article. This is a plus, also, as it gives good back-links for your blog, helps spread the word about their blog, and most likely they will reciprocate and occasionally use some of your articles, along with a link to your blogsite.

If you haven’t yet earned your 5 CEUs to retain your certification, these 2 courses will provide you with the CEUs as well as great knowledge to help your start and maintain your blog!

16 Sep 2021

Project Management

CurriculumMany people have commented in the past that doing an inventory really requires a keen sense of organization and the ability to manage a project. These comments inspired us to develop the course, Project Management.  Written by fellow NICA member Tricia Hoekwater, she not only has her CIS designation, but she is also a Credentialed Project Management Professional. Written with the home inventory sector in mind, she applied the project management skills required to achieve success for all types of inventory situations – small, large, collections only, estates, small businesses, etc.

Every inventory is a “project” that must be managed. Sometimes even small ones can have a unique twist to them, creating a question of, “How do I begin?” or “How do I approach this?” No matter the size or type of inventory – whether it takes just a couple of hours or a much larger job that takes a few weeks – managing it is essential for a professional outcome.

This course is written using the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) principles from the Project Management Institute and lays down the foundations of project management.

If you’re looking to hone your inventory skills, possibly find new processes, or just learn how to incorporate project management into your already-established system, this course will provide exceptional knowledge. Upon successfully completing Project Management, you will earn 2 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) towards your 5 required CEUs to maintain your inventory designation(s).

22 Jul 2021

Highlighting the Business Contents Inventory Course

BooksWhen most people choose to enter this industry, they think of only houses; thus, “home inventory.” However, once investigating the industry, there is a realization that there are many other needs for a record of one’s contents … storage units, boats, RVs, and businesses.

Though the processes are the same – creating documents of descriptions along with photos and/or videos, the course, Business Contents Inventory, hones in on business asset inventories.

In addition to disaster preparedness, there are many other business activities that require a thorough and up-to-date document of personal property. These include placing items in storage, tracking inventory, applying for a loan, preventing unnecessary purchases, and preparing for a buy, sell, or merger. You will be introduced to each specific type of contents inventory, along with details of the reasons for this documentation.

To properly recommend when it might be beneficial for the business owner to discuss coverage with their insurance agent, this course includes insurance basics of commercial insurance.

The 3 Modules are 1) Business Inventory, 2) Determining Your Inventory Process, and 3) Providing Your Business Inventory Service.

This is one of the four core courses required to achieve your Certified Inventory Specialist (CIS) designation.

14 Apr 2021

Changes to the Blogging Course – One is now Three

Change is GoodAs stated in last month’s newsletter, Member Tricia Hoekwater and Associate Member Mary Gillen co-authored a very thorough and in-depth course about blogging for the personal property inventory industry. It was scheduled to launch this month.

HOWEVER, once it was completed, we realized that it was just too in-depth for one course. The details and information when “digging deep” into marketing strategy and how to develop a blogsite are needed, but cramming all of this into one course would not be in your best interest. It was the epitome of “too much information!”

Therefore, we decided it would be best to break it down into three courses instead of cutting out a lot of great information. By doing this, it also allowed for additional information to be added, making these individual 3 courses even better!.

Dividing, editing, and adding information, obviously, delayed the projected timeline of having the Blogging course available in March. We are working on this now, and the first course – Introduction to Blogging – should be available very soon.

Blogging can seem overwhelming and intimidating, so the basics and details are included to give you a great start with a solid foundation of knowledge. It’s easy to put blogging on the back burner. Like any new undertaking, it takes a commitment, willingness to learn, and a plan that can be executed and followed. Starting a blog and keeping it alive is a noteworthy achievement. We are confident this course gives the information to do just that! The modules in Introduction to Blogging are:

Module 1 – Building the Foundation

  • Introduction to Blogging
  • What is a Blog
  • Why Blog
  • Start Right
  • Pros and Cons

Module 2 – Creating Content for Your Blog

  • Generating Content Ideas
  • Types of Content
  • Content Formats
  • Developing Fresh Content
  • Images

Module 3 – Naming and Branding Your Blog

  • Naming Your Blog
  • Branding Your Blog
  • Promoting Your Blog
  • Resources