April is National Home Inventory Month: Find out more
25 Mar 2015

New Course – Social Media for Business

socialmediaSocial media has become ingrained in most everyone’s life. Grandparents stay in touch with their families who share photos and have conversations. Teens and tweens have accounts so they can share their photos with each other and make plans for the weekend. Business owners often find an integration of work and personal lives intertwined in their feeds.

There is no longer a question of whether social media is here to stay. For the business owner, the questions now are often how to use social media to market their business, what platform(s) would be best for their industry, what type of content to share, and where to find the content.

Knowing the format and purpose of each site is important so you know which ones are a good fit for your industry and will help you achieve your goals. Should you have a personal and business account, or just one account for each social networking site? Is it best and keep them totally separate, completely intertwined, or partially mixed?

You are most likely either already on social media sites or are planning to join in on the conversations soon. This brings another issue that is a big one – how much time will you need to spend to make it worth your while? After all, this is “Social Media for Business.” How do you know you’re spending your time wisely posting, tweeting, and sharing information?

This online, self-directed course introduces you to the most common business social media platforms and their cultures, how to market your business using social media, and how to integrate social media into your current marketing initiatives. Also included are tips on finding and creating content, along with time-saving tools to assist you in the process. This is not a how-to course on setting up your accounts. Since formats, pages, and settings change frequently, we leave that up to the individual companies to provide current information.

Topics included in this course are

  • Benefits and risks of using social media
  • Getting started with social media
  • Your social media strategy
  • Introduction to the platforms
  • Marketing your business with social media
  • Etiquette
  • Creating your accounts
  • Finding and creating content
  • Social media management services
  • Analyzing your results

This course was created for the National Inventory Certification Association‘s Continuing Education Program. Upon successful completion, you will earn three (3) CEUs that can be applied to certification or renewing your designation.

05 Nov 2014

Inventory 101 Course Added to Curriculum

ContinuingEdMeeting the needs of the improved Certification process, two industry-related, foundation courses have been developed for the National Inventory Certification Association’s Continuing Education Program. These were designed to establish the industry standards under which industry professionals conduct business, and to provide an overview of the entire inventory industry. The Code of Ethics course was the first developed and offered for members and non-members alike. The second required foundation course, Inventory 101, was recently added to the curriculum. All courses are presented in an online, self-paced format.


The Inventory 101 course description follows:

More commonly known than personal property inventories, the manufacturing and retail industries have been documenting and tracking their assets for a much longer period of time.

At one time, a shopkeeper could keep track of his merchandise in his head. Craftsmen knew what raw materials they needed, and how much they had used. The industrial revolution altered the business world, requiring more sophisticated and systemized inventory tracking.

Small retail store owners were often able to function with a best guess, believing that they could get along just fine with a general idea of what they had in stock. As stores became larger, and a wider variety of products were made available to their customers, the shop-keepers soon noticed the benefits realized by large corporations’ asset tracking and followed suit.

Personal property inventory is fairly new compared to retail and manufacturing, but the financial and emotional benefits are being realized. Though there is still plenty of need for educating policyholders of the importance of this documentation, great strides are being made.

People have learned, usually too late, that an itemized list is required to file an insurance claim to help assist with an equitable insurance settlement. Insurance agents recommend an inventory to their residential and commercial policyholders. There are a plethora of apps, software products, books, and paper forms encouraging homeowners and business owners alike to complete their home and company inventories. Yet even with all of this knowledge and recent technology, many businesses and homes still lack this important documentation.

As the general public continues to learn of the need to protect what they own, they are seeking professional service providers to complete the task for them. The reality of the value for manufacturing and retail companies to track their assets is now transferring over to the personal property inventory industry as well. Having a complete record of contents and the associated values, whether for a company or an individual, is a must for the many life events when this information is required.

CEUs: 2

Module 1 – Introduction to the Inventory Industry

  • An Overview of the Industry
  • Determine Your Role
  • Insurance
  • Business Bond
  • License
  • Certification

Module 2 – Inventory Sectors

  • Manufacturing
  • Retail
  • Personal Property (Contents)

Module 3 – Personal Property Inventory Niche Markets

  • Residential Inventories
  • Small and Medium Business Inventories
  • Related Inventory Categories
  • Benefits of a Third Party Inventory
02 Jul 2014

Membership Not Required

notmemberExclusive. Private. Restrictive. Closed. Exclusionary. Thanks to my Thesaurus, these terms are everything our Continuing Professional Education courses are not.

Though we are a membership organization, our Continuing Professional Education courses are available for anyone who chooses to learn about home and business inventories.  You might be someone ready to start a home inventory business and need some guidance on getting started. Possibly you have already started your business and want to learn more. Even a seasoned asset inventory professional recently told me, “Though I’ve been in business for quite a while now, even I learned a few things that were certainly worth the cost of the course.”

Online self-paced courses

The two courses currently available are Residential Contents Inventory and Business Contents Inventory. Both cover the foundation of the asset inventory industry, specific to residential and business processes. Insurance and a business code of ethics is also included. To accommodate your busy schedule, all courses are online and self-paced.

Association membership

As the title of this blog post states, you are not required to be a member of the National Inventory Certification Association to take these courses.  The reason for this “open” format is that we as an association choose to serve the entire industry, not just our membership. Non-members are always welcome to benefit from the education these courses provide.

I would be remiss, however, to  not mention that NICA members receive a great benefit – a 50% discount off the cost of all Continuing Professional education courses.


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