How can remote or internet-based training benefit security?
1 Dec 2020
Internet-based training has long provided a less-expensive alternative to in-person classroom time. There are even universities that provide most or all of their instruction online. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has expanded acceptance even more and increased usage of internet-based meeting and learning tools. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How can remote or internet-based training benefit the physical security market?
Before the pandemic hit, internet-based training and self-paced learning were already starting to gain momentum. Over the last few months, we have noticed a rapid acceleration of this trend. While our ability to travel has been severely constrained, the need to learn has not gone away. On the contrary, as our industry faces new challenges such as increased cybersecurity threats, security professionals need to keep on top of their game. Using tools like an advanced Learning Management Systems and creating realistic learning scenarios in Microsoft Azure allows us to provide training that closely mirrors what security professionals will need to accomplish on the job. When the pandemic starts appearing in our rear-view mirrors, we will surely retain many of these remote training innovations methods, allowing us to equip security professionals with the knowledge to succeed, in the format that best suits their busy schedules.
Organisations across the country are looking to bolster their security and building systems for safer environments. From hospitals implementing duress notification alarms, to schools integrating gunshot detection technology, the safety of occupants is a top priority. But as CSOs and facility managers add new security solutions, they also require training that will empower them to optimise their new systems’ performance and understand the integration and technological capabilities they deliver. With organisations endeavouring to keep their buildings minimally occupied to protect employees’ health through social distancing, remote and internet-based training has become more important than ever for new technology implementation and ongoing monitoring and maintenance.
The benefits of remote training to the security market include recruiting better talent, providing high-quality service into smaller markets, and offering flexibility. Internet-based training enables our industry professionals to connect with trade schools and technical colleges offering specialised training, similar to the IT industry. By connecting with students, it opens the door to young talent that may have never considered security as a career. Online courses allow rural market companies access to the same quality training as larger markets. This elevates the local talent and keeps local money in the local market while having access to the same product and service quality as much larger markets. On-demand courses provide immeasurable flexibility. Smaller, modular sessions enable students to become certified at a comfortable pace, and refresher lessons can be taken the day before an install. For technicians, weather delays become course time, and for consultants, lunchtime becomes learning time.
This year, we have seen a dynamic shift in our workforce becoming more and more remote due to the global pandemic. This situation has affected most all verticals, including physical security. The majority of trainings that we have available to us now are online and virtual. These options provide convenient and flexible access, the scalability to serve hundreds or thousands of students simultaneously, and self-paced that fits different learning styles. Key benefits are cost savings to the organisation proctoring the trainings and attending students and a considerable reduction in travel expenses for in-person classroom trainings. Internet-based and online training should be a strategic staple of any organisation to produce and consume.
With almost everything being network and IP-based, remote instruction has never been easier. Most technicians already have a good handle on the physical side with regards to connectors and wiring, so for us it’s all about training our partners to configure cameras and the VMS. The key to success is having a system that is easy and lightweight that doesn't need heavy, thick clients, or manual configuration. Most conferencing systems like Zoom can easily be configured to screenshare so teachers and students can easily interact. With COVID, people don't want to be on-site in the customer’s building for any longer than they need to. The pandemic may have accelerated remote training, but it was already well established. It’s simply more efficient and cost effective to do remote learning for the majority of training topics. Any full-featured VMS, like our WAVE software, allows secure remote access for true hands on training.
The use of remote and Internet-based training is just one of the ways the security industry has managed to not miss a beat during the coronavirus pandemic. The ability of IP-based systems to be serviced and accessed remotely contributes to the security market’s ability to train customers and employees without the need for in-person classrooms. The increase in popularity of remote training options will likely continue even after the pandemic has ended.
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