SEVERNA PARK, MD-The National Marine Electronics Association (NMEA) has made a major change in its Master Dealer Program that gives marine electronics dealers another option for obtaining the coveted Master Dealer status. Under this option, two dealer employees who obtain NMET (National Marine Electronics Technician) certification will help the dealership qualify as a Master Dealer. Previously, a Master Dealer had to have at least one CMET (Certified Marine Electronics Technician) on staff to qualify.

The Master Dealer Program is a key component in NMEA's pledge to the boating public that NMEA dealers have the knowledge and expertise to deliver superior customer service. It focuses on three main areas: technical proficiency, ongoing education, and customer service. To qualify, dealerships must meet requirements for technical education and the proper use of specific test equipment, in addition to having at least one CMET or two NMETs on staff. Additionally, a point system based on technical courses that are completed successfully by the staff is used to determine a dealership's eligibility.

"Allowing the NMET certification opens up an opportunity for technical NMEA dealers who focus 100% on recreational installs to become Master Dealers, as they do not need the FCC commercial requirements," said Mark Reedenauer, NMEA President & Executive Director. "One of the biggest member benefits for Master Dealers is the 5% manufacturer discount coupons that are issued only to qualifying Master Dealers."

The NMET exam is a proctored 150-question test with a two-hour time limit and a requirement that the applicant correctly answer 80% of the questions. The test can be taken at any local library, test center, the NMEA office or the NMEA Conference & Expo. There are no direct study materials associated with the NMET exam at this time. Experiential knowledge of troubleshooting and installing complex marine electronics systems is the basis of the exam. The NMET exam question pool, now nearly 500 in all, has been expanded and modernized by experts in the areas of radar, sat comm, sat TV, autopilots, AIS, displays, computers, heading devices, Ethernet, Wi-Fi, VHF, DSC, SSB and NMEA data. Pricing for the NMET exam is $100 for NMEA members and $300 for non-members.

For more information on taking the NMET or becoming a NMEA Master Dealer call (410) 975-9425, email info@nmea.org or visit www.nmea.org.

By Ocean Navigator