As a company we run into a lot of situations where the IT department or “voice and data guys” come in and provide the video security along with all of the other structured cabling. Companies in the new construction phase in many instances tend to do this to save money on the video security portion of the project. In most cases you can save a good chunk of change doing this. Sounds great right? Not so much. In the long run this can cost you more than you could ever bargain for.
This is not at all an article written with the intention of bashing your IT department or structured cabling companies in general. Although, in order to make additional profits structured cabling companies or contracted IT companies will try and take on these projects. In doing so they can create some unforeseen issues that can create additional expenses down the road. We have seen this cost some companies as much as $30,000.00 due to having to teardown systems that are not properly installed or not within State Compliance. In this article we are going to cover 2 areas where doing this can be detrimental to your company and potentially leave you with legal and financial breach points.
No State Licensing- All security installations must be done by licensed companies within each state. The State of Texas is overseen by Texas DPS Private Board of Security. Each company must be licensed and insured. Each company must have within its hierarchy a “Qualified Manager” QM, to handle all state and FBI background paperwork of its employees and to keep the licensed company up to date on statutes etc. Each employee must have licensing for his or her particular duties within the company along with completing yearly continuing education courses within their expertise. A security firm must have it employees licensed if they provide the following duties; installations, sales, consulting, guard work, executive protection. Most reputable security firms employ at least 5 people. Not just one guy. Most companies looking for a security provider are not aware of these requirements and using an individual or firm that is not in compliance can cost all parties in upwards of $10,000.00 in fines. Along with possible jail time for the provider in violation. “What does this matter to the consumer”, you ask? Always make sure you are dealing with a reputable company who is in compliance from a legal and a industry perspective. Number one it’s just smart business. The old sales tactic and industry perception is that security is “peace of mind”. It’s not that at all. Effective security consists of details. Companies who are in compliance are up to speed with the latest technology, crime trends, solutions for those trends, and they have direct communication with municipal, state and federal government agencies. Lastly, compliance in this area insures that who you are dealing with has a definitive “security-detection” strategy and experience in the tactics used to protect your assets and bottom line. You don’t want a guy who was selling furniture last week protecting millions of dollars in assets, risk or have him in charge of keeping people safe. It just doesn’t make sense.
Lack of Industry Experience- It might be okay to ask your lawn guy to install a new fence for you but would you ask him to do your roof. The future liability is to great of a risk. Leaks a year from now will put a ginormous dent in your pocket book later. Unexpected costs due to lack of detail and experience are not usually welcome in your personal life so why allow them into the business world. The same concept applies to video security, access control, threat assessment consulting and even with alarms. You don’t want someone who does not have at least two years of experience deciding on where cameras need to be placed, what areas have controlled access. Every little detail matters. Heights, distances, lens types, pixel rate per foot, what devices are used on doors etc. All of these primary details determine the outcome of the evidence needed years after the installation. Key details like which side of the door a camera is placed can mean weather or not you get the evidence needed to fire a bad employee or to get identifying markers on someone you’ve never seen before. For example. Most people are right handed so when they open a door the gape of their body naturally opens to the left as they reach across to a doorknob on the left hand side of a door. So placing the camera on the upper left hand portion of the door capturing individuals exiting will greatly increase the percentages when doing a video investigation. The devil is in the details and in our industry the hundreds of small details needed to be effective in providing the best detection effort are only found in experience. If you find yourself using someone who is not well experienced in the combination of strategy, tactics and technology you could very well find yourself re-upping on your security way sooner than you anticipated. More times than not this is more costly than the initial investment.
If you find yourself taking bids for your next security project you can handle the process a couple of ways. Some large companies hire a outside security consultant to give the initial assessment and to oversee the project. By doing so they insure a punch list is followed by the integrator to completion and that everything is within industry standard and compliance. Device placement and all other details down to the screw will be in order. If it doesn’t make sense to bring in a consulting firm. Just make sure you ask the right questions and demand to see credentials of all employees, see live feed from an active customer (day and night footage), ask if they sub out the installation and lastly, HOW LONG HAVE THEY BEEN IN BUSINESS. The company and the person in charge of your project. By doing this you will be guaranteed a clean installation, properly placed devices and minimal service calls later down the road. You want to have this piece of your business installed and running effectively at all times. If you are in need of any of these services please contact DNA Security Services Or Video Security Dallas.com at email@example.com.