THE SECURITY industry has undergone profound change across the last few years. As technology has advanced in terms of its features and capabilities, so the potential for truly integrated security systems has become reality. Alex Buckle focuses on the key detail for the readers of Security Matters.
Made possible through IP technology, previously separate security systems – whether focused on access control, video surveillance or intrusion detection – have become integrated. A direct result of this is that security installers are far closer to their customers than in times gone by.
Integration isn’t being driven by advances in technology alone, though. End users increasingly want a ‘solution’ to their broader security challenges and can see beyond the discrete functions of their access control, intruder detection or video surveillance requirements. They want a system that addresses their wider business needs.
With this in mind, an integrated security system built around video not only makes that goal possible, but also renders it an easy one to achieve. It gives users a single view of their system and control over which events trigger a response and how that response is managed.
Smart installers have, of course, already realised that the future of their business lies in providing end users with a broad solution. Many design and install systems that deliver precisely that. In some cases, this has required investment in skills, although the latest video technology, for example, makes system set-up simple through the use of web-based configuration tools.
Adopting a solutions-based approach also requires security system installers to work in true partnership with their customers. Instead of installing a system and only returning to site for scheduled maintenance visits, installers are now working more closely with their customers, helping them to scale up their systems as their needs change or otherwise integrate further parts of their systems and add-in new functionality or, perhaps, greater resilience.
Working in genuine partnership is good for both the end user and the installer. The end user gains the full benefit of the installer’s expertise, while installers find a way to manage typically ‘lumpy’ revenue streams built around one-off installations and gain recurring monthly revenue from license-based models that provide remote monitoring, for example, or storage and data management.
Indeed, exciting new opportunities exist for those installers who are able to help their end users extract essential data from commissioned and operational security systems and then interpret it, in turn providing actionable insights when it comes to how the host organisation’s buildings are used, where the risk really lies and pinpoint where additional resources need to be put in place.
The ‘cutting edge’ of security installation, if you like, is made possible by deep integration and the extraction of the data that operational systems have always generated, but which – until recently, at least – has for the most part remained trapped and hidden in silos.
Armed with these new insights, end users are able to precisely monitor their buildings and estates and build patterns of how, why and when they’re used. They can use video to verify events and protect their buildings on the basis of how they are actually used, removing the guesswork from security policy and providing cost savings as well as operational efficiencies. This also realises a more sensible deployment of security resources to where the risk is greatest.
Such added value benefits the user’s entire organisation and helps security managers, building/estates managers and loss prevention professionals promote the greater value of security systems to upper management and the Board level. That serves to bind the installer even tighter to the customer.
It’s safe to say, then, that system integration is the way forward for today’s security installers who have a keen eye on the development of better and more profitable relationships with their customers.
Alex Buckle is UK Business Development Manager at 3xLOGIC
Thursday 28 October sees Security Matters host another instalment of its popular webinar series. Beginning at 10.30 am, representatives from video technology expert 3xLOGIC will explain in great detail how video is being used to maximise efficiency, minimise risk and open up a range of new possibilities for end users and security installers/integrators. Register now to view the webinar and receive Continuing Professional Development points