As with most things in life, multi-facility security is not 100-percent cut-and-dry. There are times when a corporation might want to adopt more flexible security rules for a rural office whose employees don’t want the front door locked all day like at the corporate office. A corporation might need to adapt a little more to local needs, such as allowing entrance and exit for courtyard areas without requiring card access.
Minding the Budget
Cash is king, and security directors worry that the more devices, software and other equipment they deploy, the more expensive and complicated the security program will become. While it is true that properly implementing a security program is not cheap, there are many cost-saving measures that some corporate security directors might overlook.
Taking a standardized approach to all systems enables a company to centrally manage and monitor data — whether from the surveillance or access control system. As a result, it becomes less expensive to have one or two people head up this responsibility on a company-wide basis instead of having one person manage security at each individual location. Having an office manager maintain the access control system and access privileges can prove more costly than having a single person manage this function on a daily basis who knows the system inside and out.
Companies can also save money on software licensing agreements by standardizing on a single solution. Security directors can also expect better support from their manufacturer and systems integrator partner.
Additionally, it is common for companies with large-scale technology deployments — for example, a video management or access control system — to get an inside scoop from the manufacturer on new features and how the equipment will evolve in the future. Having this information obviously helps a security director plan for future programs.
Future-proofing may be one of the biggest buzzwords in the security industry, as security directors look to ensure that the security products they deploy today will remain relevant in two years, five years or more. This becomes a critical topic in a multi-facility deployment to ensure that budgets are spent wisely and the ability to upgrade systems as the industry introduces new technology is available.
Manufacturers are listening to their customers about the need to future-proof security systems and as a result have created NVRs and video management systems that can operate with both IP-based and analog-based surveillance cameras. This enables end-users to take a strategic approach to upgrades and ensure that the investment they make in security systems today still has value in five years or more.
As a corporate security director, it’s important to make sure that you are implementing security systems that can either be upgraded in the future by downloading new software or that have a long-standing reputation in the security market. The last thing a security director wants is a newly installed access control system to become outdated or unsupported after only a few years.
Joe Liguori is the president of the Board of Directors of Security-Net, a global provider of security integration services. Security-Net is comprised of 50 regional offices and 1,500 dedicated, security professionals positioned across the United States, Canada and abroad.