Originally setup by David Dugdale in 1989, a former consumer electronics technician, Jonathan took over the business in 2010, two years after setting up his own commercial telecommunications business.
Jonathan has done consultancy for Hughes Electrical, the largest independent electrical retailer in the country and has featured in a number of trade publications writing about connecting technology and the rise of the SMART Home.
Dugdales CSH have twice been awarded North of England SKY Retailer of the Year and in 2014 won the Ribble Valley Award for best Small Business.
What are you up to today?
I’ve been problem solving at a couple of recent installs where we’ve had intermittent issues. These are the bain of my life, but unfortunately the ‘nature of the beast’ that is technology!
How and why did you pursue a career in the AV/Install industry?
My dad set up the company 25 years ago and predominantly did SKY and aerial and satellite installations and sold TVs. I started my own commercial aerial and satellite distribution company about seven years ago before being passed over the business in 2010.
We had just passed digital switchover, we has a mass of cheap products from China and its was the height of the recession, so it was quite tough!
I needed to take the company somewhere and saw more and more connected devices coming into the home with the home network getting incredibly complex and thought this was the future.
Today, technology with innovation is changing everything around us.
What project are you most proud of in your career and why?
We did the Harrogate home building and renovation show last November.
We built a custom unit with full automation in two weeks (while maintaining our day to day jobs), we dealt with all sorts of issues from marketing to joinery to electrics, etc, etc it was one of the most stressful times of my life, but it was do or die.
We did it and the show went well. I’d even say we had by far the best technology stand there.
What is the worst thing (outside of your control) that has ever gone wrong on a project?
We do lots of retrofit work on new builds and renovations and on every job we have to try and provide some sort of solution because other trades think what we do is easy.
These ‘have a go’ trades who don’t have our knowledge or experience cost the customer time and money and diminish the level of expertise that we need to do our job.
We’ve seen all sorts of crazy installs!
As an installer, what is one thing you’re tired of hearing either on the job, or about your job?
“It’s easy, I’ll have a go!”
What one thing could the industry collectively do to improve its standing and profitability?
We need a trade body that is government backed like NICEIC or Gas Safe.
This industry is not regulated to the point that we’re combining multiple skills: IT, programming, heating, lighting, electrics, electronics, telecommunications, networking, consumer electronics, etc and no one represents what we do.
There are too many companies / people who think they can do everything and it dilutes the proposition of a company like ourselves because we believe in standards in everything we do.
What is your favourite piece of AV kit on the market right now?
Sonos and Samsung UHD Curved
What product/s or concepts do you think will be the next big thing will be in the industry?
I think consumer electronics is dictating the industry with more to come. I’m scared that Dixons, Carphone Warehouse and John Lewis are getting into this space, but believe that a retail model is the future.
I just hope that their ignorance and mistakes doesn’t slow adoption.
What’s the best thing about life as an installer?
I love solving problems.
You can invite three people living or dead out for a pint or over for dinner (not including family and friends!) Who are they and why?
Bob Dylan because he’s a poet. Matthew McConaughey because of True Detective (definitely not Colin Farrell! TD2 is like a ‘B’ movie).
Ben Hogan to understand how he created and understood the golf swing.
You can only listen to one album and watch one film for the rest of your life, what are they?
Guns and Roses, November Rain. It’s cheating because it’s a series but The Wire.
What’s a common pet peeve during a project?
TV locations. Above a chimney with no tilt, WHY?
Do you have any hidden talents?
I like keeping fit and can squat 180KG … pretty random!