Video surveillance has become incredibility important to our everyday lives. This may sound a bit dramatic but simple facts back up the validity of this bold statement.
Video surveillance provides peace of mind and security at child care centers and educational facilities, monitors our interstate highway system, provides data analytics that determine where certain items will be placed on shopping shelves, saves lives of our fighting forces overseas—the list goes on and on. The law enforcement terrorism team in Boston used video surveillance technology as a key tool in capturing the terrorists, from the onset of the event until the tarp was pulled from a backyard boat with the assistance of infrared surveillance and second suspect Dzhorkhar Tsarnaev unveiled.
I had an interesting conversation with Ingram Micro executive Tom Burns recently and he stated that video surveillance has become a killer app of sorts. This comment is based on the fact that for every dollar spent on video, two to three additional dollars are spent on the supporting surveillance infrastructure such as networking, storage, power and monitoring. From this it’s obvious that big business is interested in big video surveillance and the big data provided by our industry.
No longer a niche, necessity
Many of us who have grown up in the CCTV surveillance business and existed in electronic security prior to widespread video deployment can appreciate the astounding strides this rapidly growing niche has made. Video surveillance has graduated from niche to necessity.
Considering video surveillance hardly existed 30 years ago it is mind boggling to think about where this industry will be in the coming three decades. Security and safety will be just one of thousands of applications that will continue to drive what has become a critical industry and will soon evolve into a huge business attracting additional investment and opportunity for everyone involved.
As security decision makers, we all need to develop strategy that assures relevance in this rapidly growing business. It was not very difficult to be a player when CCTV was the play of the day and security video, as the acronym CCTV clearly states, was closed.
CCTV was closed not just from a technical RG-59 perspective but also in a business, investment and battle for the brightest human capital perspective as well. All this has changed and will continue to morph rapidly as our world becomes more dependent on the capabilities video surveillance provides now and increasingly in an even more advanced, sophisticated manner.
As our once niche industry goes big business it will take a different skill set to survive and thrive. Traditional industry players will not necessarily lead in the future—as the best and the brightest bring new skills, new attitudes, new enthasusasim and new technology to the table.
Now the big questions: How does your company and your career fit in this new world of big business video surveillance? Can you compete with companies and individuals that come from an open network environment? Can you compete with companies who have an in-depth understanding of ROI selling and acting as a trusted partner to your customer?
As stated in the recent Imperial Capital Security Industry Monitor: “We are at the cusp of a real significant division in our industry. There are the “haves”—those companies with the IT IQ and “have not’s” those companies that still essentially remain rooted to a legacy client base deploying proprietary products where the conversation is usually with the security manager about perimeter protection and where good installation and attention to service may not be enough to hold the client in five years.
Bill Bozeman is the CEO and president of PSA Security Network, the world’s largest electronic security cooperative, representing security systems integrators. For more information, visit www.buypsa.com.