Round table contributions
The new year presents new opportunities for the physical security marketplace. In many ways, 2018 will undoubtedly see further development of trends we saw in 2017. In fact, some of the trends determining the future of the physical security industry have been in place for many years. However, not every event in 2018 can be foreseen or easily predicted. To be sure, it is sometimes the surprises that keep life interesting! We asked this week Expert Panel Roundtable: What will be the security market’s biggest surprise in 2018?
In recent years, information technology (IT) departments at end user companies have often been seen as adversaries of traditional security departments – or, at least, as a thorn in their side. One of the issues is territorial: As physical security products have migrated to use of Internet protocols and the network infrastructure, the IT and security departments have clashed – erm… make that interacted – more and more often. New realities such as cybersecurity have made it critical that the two entities work in harmony, and IT professionals often provide useful insights into product selection, among other issues. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What is the influence of the IT department on security purchases at an end user company?
It seems there are more “bad things” happening than ever before. We hear news every day of workplace shootings and terrorist attacks, of smash-and-grab thefts and child abductions. Beyond the possible human tragedy involved, such events pose a persistent question to anyone involved in the realm of security: Could we have prevented it? The first step toward prevention is to predict or foresee an event before it happens. Too often, technology enters the picture after the fact, most commonly the use of forensic video. Isn’t there more our industry can do before such events occur? We put the question to this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How can security systems be used to predict bad things before they happen?
Industry standards make it possible for systems and technologies to connect and work together. Standards enable today’s integrated systems. But does adherence to standards stifle innovation? Does the necessity to interface using an industry-wide standard slow down the implementation of newer (and possibly not standards-compliant) capabilities? Or do standards eliminate extraneous variables, empower more integration and encourage greater innovation? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How does the use of standards either stifle or jump-start innovation?
Products are the building blocks of systems and solutions. How those products are combined, and where the integration happens, is a variable in the physical security market. Before the advent of open systems, a single manufacturer typically combined his own products, using proprietary connections, into end-to-end solutions for customers. Open systems undermined that paradigm to some degree and made it possible for customers to pick and choose products from multiple manufacturers to be integrated into a solution. Lately, the pendulum has again swung toward “system solutions,” or end-to-end systems provided by a single manufacturer … Or has it? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Is the industry shifting from a focus on products to emphasising end-to-end solutions? How is that a good (or bad) thing?
Video systems today offer more capabilities than ever. Consequently, the systems can be used in new ways. For a variety of reasons, however, many customers don’t take full advantage of the capabilities of their video systems and therefore are leaving value on the table. Education and training are tools to alleviate the situation, but the first step is to identify the new ways that video can be used. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How do customers under-utilise their video systems, and what should they do differently?
Companies in fast-moving industries tend to want half or more of their revenue to come from products released in the last three or so years. The logical extension of that philosophy is the demise of product "cash cows" that remain in a company's portfolio for many years. Where better to witness the shortening life cycles of technology products than in the smart phone market, where most of us buy into the hype of the "latest and greatest?" But does acceleration of new product introductions translate into shorter product life cycles in the field? We asked this week's Expert Panel Roundtable: What is an acceptable life cycle for a physical security system? Is there a trend toward systems being replaced more, or less, often?
Measuring return on investment (ROI) has long presented a challenge to the security marketplace. Investment in security is often viewed as a necessary cost whose benefits cannot be measured. For example, how do you measure the value of an event that doesn’t happen (i.e., that has been prevented)? The difficulty of measuring ROI doesn’t diminish customers’ appetite for it, however. Today’s choosy customers are driven more than ever by the bottom line and expect any and all of their investments to show a healthy return. Therefore, we asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Is it possible to measure return on investment (ROI) in the security market? How?
Big data is a buzzword, and data – presumably of all sizes – is a driving force in the physical security market. As systems become more sophisticated and expand their capabilities, the result is more data; in some cases, a lot more data. But a key question is: What do we do with the data? How do we use it to provide value? How do we interpret it, and transform it into useful information and/or intelligence? We presented the topic of data to our Expert Panel Roundtable and came away with a range of thoughts on its changing – and expanding – role in the physical security market (and beyond). We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How is a greater emphasis on data changing the physical security market?
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