Best practices from the best integrators

Jan. 11, 2012
A look inside some of the channel's best practices

From simple yet effective tips to full-blown technological innovation, systems integrators shared some interesting best practices with their peers at the ESI Forum and ESA Leadership Summit in Irving, Texas.

Winners of the 2012 Best Practice Award Winners at the Forum’s Roundtable Session included:

  • Mijac Alarm for the Financial, Legal and Human Capital Management Category and their self-created software program to document project management;

  • Inner Security Systems Inc. for the New Technology Implementation Category and their eRamm Emergency Remote Alarm Mobile Monitoring mobile client;

  • Pinnacle Security for the Production Management (Design/Installation) Category and their Pinnacle Dashboard and MySales websites;

  • Pro-Tech Systems for the Profit-Generating Strategies Category and their incentive letter offering the customer the means to budget their maintenance expenses along with a three-year contract for the service; and

  • ASG Security for the Sales and Marketing Management Category and their lead generation program called: “We Want You Back.”

Prior to the awards presentation, integrators brainstormed best practices and shared them with the audience.  They discussed the practices which were submitted for awards and used these examples to talk about endeavors at their own companies, or expand on those submitted for award consideration.

Angela White, president of Pro-Tech Systems in Waterbury, Vermont, said her winning entry was simple to implement, took a bit of time but cost less than $100 overall. “Our idea involved sending letters to clients in advance of their maintenance contract expiration and offering them incentives to sign longer agreements; we also prioritized their service when they signed up,” she said. “It took about a year to effectively implement because of the way we scheduled it around their current contract expiration dates. But it cost about $67 to launch, was simple and easy, and has brought in new revenue,” she said.

Another winner included Inner Security System’s alternative signal transmission technology, called eRAMM or emergency Remote Alarm Mobile Monitoring, which gives PSAP and 911 centers a back up facility for monitoring in the event of an emergency. With the service, Inner Security Systems clients can transfer alarm monitoring services from their building to the eRAMM mobile station parked outside or near their facility. Dispatchers perform the same functions remotely from inside the secure environment until their building is safe or ready to occupy again.

Pinnacle Security’s Dashboard and MySales websites were terrific examples of how a security company can use technology and tracking to be more efficient and motivate staff. Whether on a personal computer, a tablet or a smartphone, employees have instant access to view real time data pertaining to themselves, their team or their competing teams. The company increased the overall quality of installations and the progress per technician by allowing them to track their individual status for the current year and past years worked, as well as instilled competitive spirit by allowing them to view other’s data.

Other best practices which did not garner an award but were notable included SDA Security’s move to change the culture and environment of the company—with quarterly competitions and luncheons, as well as Amherst Alarm’s customer service department electronic file system designed to improve organizational efficiency by implementing a document and records management system.