London Drugs, headquartered in Richmond, B.C., is a Canadian owned retailer selling computers, consumer electronics, cameras, food, and health, wellness, and beauty products. London Drugs’ 59 retail stores are located in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and British Columbia. The company employs more than 6,000

people.

London Drugs has sold computers and related products and services for more than 20 years. In an effort to more effectively gauge the skills, competence, and knowledge of computer technician job applicants, London Drugs made CompTIA A+ certification a requirement for new hires beginning in 2001. This decision was based on the extensive knowledge mastery required to pass the two CompTIA A+ certification exams, one covering core PC hardware and the other covering standard operating systems.

These new technicians were not only productive and efficient workers, but were also flexible and capable problem solvers. Subsequently, London Drugs set a goal of having at least one CompTIA A+ certified technician at each store. The company offered employees free CompTIA A+ training, and also defrayed the cost of the two exams.

Today, London Drugs has approximately 70 CompTIA A+ certified computer technicians at its 59 locations. Service related revenues have grown steadily since adopting CompTIA A+ as a competency standard. Customers increasingly check with London Drugs’ technicians first when they have computer related questions and concerns. Trust keeps customers coming back and generates word-of-mouth referrals among family, friends, and colleagues. Technicians are also helping to stimulate sales of important add-ons, including computer security and home networking products. The internal and external benefits of CompTIA A+ certification have been well worth the investment.

Cedric Tetzel is a computer merchandise manager at London Drugs. He welcomes you feedback and questions at ctetzel@londondrugs.com.

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