Axis Communications, a global industry front-runner in network video, has released the results of a recent partner survey in a new whitepaper exploring the impact of COVID-19 on the physical security industry. The online survey, conducted in December 2020, sought the views of senior decision makers within circa 200 partner companies across the UK and Ireland. It is hoped that through the results partners and the wider security industry will be able to make more informed decisions on future business opportunities. The enduring effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have yet to be fully grasped. Its initial impact on businesses in the UK and around the world was swift and gave rise to a great many challenges. As businesses adapt to the new social and economic reality and lay down plans for the year ahead, many will want to implement necessary measures to mitigate the effects of further recurrences. The report identifies ways that technology can facilitate a smarter, safer world, by helping businesses to continue to operate through careful management of social distancing and other COVID-led requirements. New security approach Axis’ ‘listening project’ also sought insight into how it can better support its partners and their customers in 2021 Axis’ ‘listening project’ also sought insight into how it can better support its partners and their customers in 2021. While the majority of partners continued to work, albeit some with limited capacity, under their classification as essential services, 41% of respondents expressed concerns about their supply chains, while anxiety over general economic recovery was repeatedly referenced as a top concern for both partners (67%) and their customers (55%). What is clear is the need for ongoing support as partners and customers embrace new approaches to security, with strong customer support viewed as essential. Effective business operations David Needham, Sales Manager of the UK and Ireland, Axis Communications, commented, “Despite the unprecedented disruption that COVID-19 has caused, Axis is proud to have been able to effectively respond and adapt. To further demonstrate our commitment to offer support wherever possible, we launched a survey in the region to identify the main challenges, needs and expectations of our trusted partners, their customers, and wider stakeholders.” “Through careful analysis of the experiences of senior decision makers from a wide range of industries, we will be able to determine where the greatest support is needed and identify ways that technology can facilitate safer and more effective business operations.” Analytics, contactless entry and video surveillance Over half of the partner companies that responded serve medium to large enterprises in a wide range of industry sectors, with more than one in ten employing over 1000 people. Analytics are highlighted as being key to ongoing success, with crowd management and assistance with appropriate social distancing measures also welcomed. In addition, contactless entry to avoid the unnecessary touching of shared surfaces, and integrated solutions such as video surveillance combined with access control, are emphasised. In terms of which particular sectors are viewed as having the most potential in the year ahead, (73%) of respondents cited commercial, followed by industrial (58%) and education (50%). Changes in workflow Process changes have also been widespread throughout the physical security industry On the effects of the pandemic to businesses to date, changes in workflow were reported by most respondents, who indicated that both they and their customers have been challenged by the shift to remote working that has accompanied COVID. HR issues were raised as a cause for concern by 29% of partners; and 33% of end customers, according to the partners, had been affected by HR related issues and 32% by their ability to effectively function remotely. The survey responses indicated that process changes have also been widespread throughout the physical security industry, but few regarded this as a concern. Respondents touched upon a number of key areas, such as increased use of video conferencing, a shift toward remote management systems and changes in sales activity. A third cited changes in service delivery and sales processes (34%). Many believe that the increased emphasis on health and safety processes would likely continue, even as restrictions are eased. Survey outcomes in the Whitepaper The fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic has been widespread and often difficult to gauge. The Axis survey results contained in the whitepaper shed light on the issues facing businesses in the security industry and their customers, as well as their willingness to embrace modern technology, such as automation, analytics, and touchless tools to mitigate those concerns. The responses will help Axis meet the needs of its partners and customers, and continue to find ways of innovating for a smarter, safer world.
For retailers in city or town centres, storefront vandalism and break-ins will affect the bottom line negatively. Integrating network audio in their IP camera surveillance systems is an effective way to protect property and also to improve staff security. Protecting UK high streets The high streets of Great Britain have seen their status as the main arteries of towns and cities dwindle, since hitting ‘peak High Street’ in 19th-century Victorian England. Even so, they remain essential, for example, offering residents multiple options for shopping, food, and entertainment. However, during nights, especially during weekends, the high street may attract more shady individuals. For the retailers, this may result in costs for clean ups, repairs, replacing damaged property, or worse. Enhancing retail surveillance solutions Recently, several UK retail businesses have approached Axis Communications Recently, several UK retail businesses have approached Axis Communications. Some are long-time Axis IP camera users, while others use competitors’ cameras. The common denominator is that they are looking to improve their surveillance solutions. David Needham, UK & Ireland Sales Manager at Axis Communications, said “If you look at their stores, they are normally on the high street, and there is lots of anti-social behaviour that can happen, or people trying to break in or damage their property.” As the word spreads about the benefits of integrating network audio in IP surveillance systems, more customers want to install loudspeakers outside their stores to improve security. AXIS Perimeter Defender analytics A typical system works like this. If the AXIS Perimeter Defender analytics inside the IP cameras catch someone loitering in front of a store longer than a pre-determined period, it generates an alert to a staffed control room. In the control room, an operator talks live through the horn speaker, telling intruders to go away. The way the analytics is set up, it ignores anybody that walks past the store, which significantly reduces the number of false alarms. Wide use of horn speakers The analytics can also trigger a pre-recorded message that is broadcasted through the speaker. However, live messages have proven more effective. “Our horn speakers have been a great success in the UK,” said David Needham, adding “We sell a lot of them, so it is just natural to put it all together. The result is less damage and less crime. Network audio is now a standard part of several customers’ store design.” For the customers, the connectivity and the quality of Axis’ solution are usually the primary purchasing factors. David Needham adds, “If you’re putting analytics in a camera on a high-street, where people and cars are passing, you need something that will work well. You need a reliable solution that doesn’t trigger false alarms.” Enhancing staff security In one project, Axis UK added horn speakers and live voice messages to help improve working conditions There are several ways to use network audio in surveillance. In one project, Axis UK added horn speakers and live voice messages to help improve working conditions. This retailer’s staff often had to work inside the stores, after closing time, to stack shelves, getting the store ready for the next day. However, it is quite common that intruders try to break in to steal small and high-valuable products that they can quickly convert into cash. David Needham stated, “Obviously, if someone tries to break in, that is quite unnerving. With the audio solution in place, the staff feels protected and safer. The result is that you have a happier, more productive staff. The staff retention goes up as well.” High-grade panic button Another network audio application used for staff security is a high-grade panic button. “If there are any problems or conflicts in the store, or people are trying to steal high-value goods,” states Needham. He adds, “The staff can press the button, and the alert goes through to the control room. The operator then talks through a ceiling speaker to the store, for example, ‘You are being observed, please leave the building!’” Supplier of end-to-end solutions The integration of network audio has opened some customers’ eyes to the fact that Axis is so much more than a supplier of high-quality IP cameras. It is changing Axis Communications’ role. “A growing number of customers now see us as an end-to-end supplier as well as their security partner,” said David Needham, adding “Increasingly, they come to us and say, ‘Here’s the problem that we have, how do we fix it?’ With some of them, we have an ongoing review process and special innovation days, where we show them what we can do and discuss their requirements.” David points out that one of the crucial success factors is that the competitors don't have the network-based audio component with the horn speaker. He concludes, “Maybe they could do something similar, using an analogue speaker, a mixture of devices and code. But they will miss out on the many features and possibilities of IP systems, and there we control the whole solution.”
The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) deploys unique security solution to protect medieval chapel as important restoration work begins Axis Communications, globally renowned firm dealing in network video technology, has been working alongside The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) to bring a medieval property back to life so that one day it can be used as a home. Deploying Axis network cameras The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, a UK charity organisation, based out of London, sought a unique solution to protect a circa C15 chapel in need of restoration and deployed a network camera solution to monitor the site remotely for intruders and to act as a deterrent against theft of materials. The SPAB is dedicated to protecting and repairing historic buildings, and recently purchased former chapel St Andrews The SPAB is dedicated to protecting and repairing historic buildings, and recently purchased former chapel St Andrews near Maidstone, Kent, with the aim of breathing life back into the structure. In recent years its main roles have been advice, training and campaigning. However, the recently purchased building, its first new repair project in almost 50 years, will allow the SPAB to teach others the practical skills required to care for such a building, whilst also returning a historic building to the housing market. Protecting and securing historic buildings The Axis solution has negated the need to have a security resource on site to protect the premises. The video surveillance and intrusion detection system has already successfully identified intruders entering the grounds of the building. Additionally, the network cameras can document the restoration work as it takes place on a daily basis and have also been useful in detecting local wildlife to provide the Kent Wildlife Trust with an idea of the range of animals with homes around the location, including many foxes. The technologies used included: Four AXIS Companion Bullet LE cameras, delivering HD video quality with built-in IR illumination for effective surveillance in darkness An AXIS Companion Cube camera with a built-in microphone and mini-speaker to effectively deter intruders AXIS Companion Recorder, providing a wireless access point for mobile devices. Network camera surveillance The image quality of the cameras is fantastic, especially at night" Matthew Slocombe, director of the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, commented, “The image quality of the cameras is fantastic, especially at night when it is, of course, usually more difficult to identify potential threats. We are grateful to Axis Communications for providing this work and equipment free of charge, it means we can put our resources into saving St Andrews, Boxley – a truly special building.” The SPAB believes that ensuring the future of our culturally and historically important buildings can improve our environment and wellbeing. Because this drive to create a better world is in line with Axis’ ethos of innovating for a smarter, safer world and doing good in the community, the cameras were donated for the purposes of securing the premises during the conservation works. Efficient intrusion detection David Needham, UK & Ireland Sales Manager at Axis Communications, said “We felt we wanted to get involved with this project as we recognised an organisation that was trying to help others and do good in the community, which is core to our values as a business. Since the installation, the cameras have identified young adults entering the building’s grounds, but not harming the property. It’s also seen local residents stopping and challenging people looking to enter unlawfully. This has meant there is no need to deploy security personnel to secure the site, saving the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings time and money.”
Tavcom Training, part of the Linx International Group, has announced it is once again delivering the free educational programme for ‘The Future of Security Training Theatre‘ at IFSEC International 2018, with sponsor Panasonic UK. The Theatre will deliver a range of essential CPD accredited presentations on cutting-edge subjects that are key to technical security professionals. Renowned for over ten years as the ‘Tavcom Theatre’, this year, following an extensive research programme, show organisers UBM have rebranded the theatre to meet with the theme for the event. ‘The Future of Security Training Theatre’ will be a major element in the new ‘Show Me How’ project at IFSEC 2018, which will identify educational opportunities where visitors can learn about industry best practice and capabilities. This year’s schedule promises something for everyone, including cyber security and integrated networks, audio systems, countering drone threats" Physical and cyber security education Tavcom Training Executive Director, Paul Tennent commented, “We have a longstanding and proud tradition of delivering free education at IFSEC, which expects to see over 40,000 visitors this year and has been at the heart of the security market for more than 40 years. This year’s schedule promises something for everyone, including cyber security and integrated networks, audio systems, countering drone threats and the ever-increasing links between physical and cyber security.” During the three days of the show, Tavcom will deliver a wide range of free educational sessions which will be supported by specialist speakers from across the security industry, including: Peter Mason, M Ed., CTSP, who has been the lead IP tutor for Tavcom Training Ltd for over 15 years, starts the programme with ‘Future of Security Networks’. Peter is also presenting: ‘Cybercrime and security’. David Needham, Sales Manager for Axis in the UK and Ireland, will be presenting ‘Network Audio Systems – Integrated Audio made Smart and Easy’. Jim Perkins, Business Development Manager at Panasonic UK will be discussing video management systems with: ‘Panasonic breaks the VMS mould with video insight’. Nikola Serfimovski, Director – Business Strategy at PureLifi will be giving a seminar entitled: ‘LiFi, the future of high bandwidth secure broadband communication’. Mike Gillespie, Managing Director and Co-Founder of Advent IM Ltd and Vice President of the C3i Centre for Strategic Cyberspace + Security Science (CSCSS) will be presenting ‘Raising standards; raising cyber security awareness’. Justin Pringle, Chief Technology Officer CTO at DroneOps Ltd will be giving a timely presentation entitled: ’Countering the drone threat’. Tony Weeks, Head of Technical Services at the National Security Inspectorate (NSI) will be discussing ‘Automating the transfer of alarms to emergency services: maximising public benefits’. Dr Mark Wherrett CEng MIET CTSP will present the future of analytics in a seminar entitled: ‘Smart, connected cameras and big data – the power of video is being unleashed’ IP-based integration and video analytics Tavcom Training’s Warren Collins CTSP will be discussing the integration of security systems with ‘Deploying an IP Based Integration Project’, whilst Senior Tavcom Training Tutor, Dr Mark Wherrett CEng MIET CTSP, will present the future of analytics in a seminar entitled: ‘Smart, connected cameras and big data – the power of video is being unleashed’. IFSEC International is also the perfect opportunity to learn more about the Register for Certified Technical Security Professionals (CTSP), which has been endorsed in the UK by the British Security Industry Association (BSIA), as well as internationally by Dubai’s Security Industry Regulatory Agency (SIRA). It represents the only opportunity for individuals fulfilling technical roles in the electronic security and fire systems sectors, to be officially recognised for their competencies and qualifications on a public register. Paul Tennent continued, “IFSEC International will again deliver on its promise to educate and enlighten visitors. Myself and the team at Linx International Group look forward to seeing you there!”
David has a vast knowledge of network video operations in access control markets across EMEA Axis Communications, a provider of network video, has strengthened its expertise and service offering with the appointment of David Needham to the new role of UK & Ireland Sales Manager. David, previously a Key Account Manager at Axis, has over 20 years of sales experience working with global security brands. The newly-created role reflects a strategic decision by Axis to provide a growing sales team with the management and direction it requires to continue to satisfy appetite for network camera sales in the UK and Ireland. The role will see him manage the UK&I team of Key Account Managers, realising the benefits of Axis’ innovative network video technology for a range of businesses seeking support in driving business growth. Network video knowledge With a background in electrical engineering, David has a vast knowledge of network video operations in access control markets across EMEA. His appointment will support Axis in raising awareness of the benefits of the Axis Internet of Security Things. Whereas the IoT connects devices together and allows them to send and receive data, the Axis Internet of Security Things allows network cameras to think and make decisions independently. Axis’ range of internet-enabled network cameras and newly launched audio and video solutions will ensure organisations’ premises are kept secure, while enhanced intelligence will help improve operational efficiency to support ROI and growth. Integrating video and access control "Surveillance is rarely a standalone requirement, with firms coming to expect interaction between devices connected to the internet" David Needham, UK & Ireland Sales Manager at Axis Communications, states, “Axis is the pioneer in intelligent security solutions and has moved far beyond manufacturing products that serve only a surveillance purpose. Surveillance is rarely a standalone requirement, with firms coming to expect interaction between devices connected to the internet. For example, customers are seeking network video systems integrated with access control units. I look forward to supporting and growing our customer base looking to make the most of these intelligent new solutions to drive business growth.” Growing the UK team Atul Rajput, Regional Director of Northern Europe at Axis Communications, states “We’re pleased to announce this senior appointment tasked with driving our successful UK&I sales team. With David's in-depth knowledge of the network video market, aligned with a proven ability to sell complex solutions and a strong track record of achieving consistent high sales growth during his career at Axis, I am confident that David is the ideal candidate to continue to grow and develop our team in the UK.” Atul Rajput continues, “This strategic appointment further demonstrates our commitment to supporting our partners as they look to explore the many and varied opportunities available to them. Our commitment to providing innovative solutions that help create a smarter and safer world continues and the appointment of David will be central to driving this forward.”