Round Table Expert Panel
High-quality products are the building blocks of successful physical security systems. How they are packaged may sometimes be seen as an unimportant detail or an afterthought. But should it be? Effective packaging can serve many functions, from creating a favorable customer impression to ensuring the product isn’t damaged in transit. Packaging can also contribute to ease of installation. On the negative side, excess packaging can be an environmental concern, especially for customers who are sensitive to green factors or to minimising waste. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Is packaging of products important in the commercial security market? Why or why not?
Finding the exact right technology to solve an end user’s problem is challenging, but the rewards are great when an integrator gets it right. A wide range of available product types, price levels and added features increases the likelihood of identifying a technology to solve any problem. But with so many technology and product choices in the marketplace, identifying that one solution can be akin to finding a needle in a haystack. We wondered whether a vast range of product choices is always a good thing. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Are security integrators and end users overwhelmed by “too many choices” related to security equipment and systems? How can they make sense of it all?
Social media is part of our everyday lives, and increasingly it is also part of the security marketplace. Social media can be used for effective marketing and to communicate with customers, and it can be leveraged as a tool to make us all more secure. Communicating information in a crisis is another role social media can play to promote security. To elaborate on social media’s increasingly vital presence in the security marketplace, we asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What role can social media play in security?
Consolidation – a decrease in the number of companies in a market achieved through mergers and acquisitions (M&A) – has been an important trend among manufacturers in the physical security market for many years. More recently, the trend has also appeared to extend to the integrator market. Larger integrators have been buying up other large integrators; in some cases, they have also been buying up smaller, regional integrators to expand their geographic coverage area. We wondered if this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable has noticed the trend. We asked: Has consolidation among security companies shifted to the integrator/installer market? What is the impact?
Knowledge shared among peers is often afforded more credibility than information from manufacturers. An approximation of that principle is at work in the use of case studies as marketing tools in the physical security industry. Case studies are aimed at telling real-world success stories – from actual customers – about how various technologies are used to accomplish security goals and make the world a safer place. But how useful are they? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the benefits of case studies as a marketing tool in the security industry?
You could say concerns about privacy are “trending” in our increasingly data-driven world. Unease about how Facebook and other high-tech companies use and share data dominates the news, and the full impact of new European Union (EU) regulations is about to be felt around the world. By May 25, companies that collect data on EU citizens will need to comply with strict new rules around protecting customer data, as enumerated in the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). But how do the new regulations, and broader concerns about privacy, affect the physical security market? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How do privacy issues and regulations, such as GDPR, impact physical security systems and how they are managed?
The reviews are in, and ISC West was another hit. Brisk attendance and a comprehensive lineup of the industry’s top companies and products contributed to another successful show for Reed Exhibitions. Our Expert Panel Roundtable, who have attended many such events, added their own reflections to the industry’s post-ISC glow. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How successful was ISC West 2018 for security industry exhibitors and visitors?
The residential/smart home market is undergoing revolutionary transformation, with a flood of new products and technologies helping to make our homes more connected, easier to manage and, yes, smarter. These massive steps forward provide challenges, and also opportunities, for the security industry, which has played a major role in protecting homes and residents for decades. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How are changes in the residential/smart home market impacting security?
A big trade show, such as the upcoming ISC West, has a lot to offer for attendees. If anything, a big show has “too much” to offer; there is certainly more to experience than any one person could get around to. How, then, can attendees maximise the value they get out of ISC West? For advice, we go to our Expert Panel Roundtable, all seasoned veterans of many big trade shows. Specifically, we asked this week’s panel: How can attendees get the most out of a big trade show like ISC West?
Cloud computing has been around since the turn of the millennium. Over the years, the concept of storing and accessing programs over the Internet (instead of using an on-premises computer system) has grown in almost every realm of business. Some might say the physical security industry has come late to the party, delayed in some instances by (misguided?) concerns about cybersecurity of cloud systems. The bandwidth needed to transfer video to the cloud has also been a challenge. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What features of Cloud-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) are the most valuable to the average user?
The manufacturers behind today’s security technologies are a varied bunch. There are large manufacturers with deep pockets and plenty of resources. And there are smaller manufacturers who are nimble, can react faster to changing market conditions and to whom each customer represents a hard-fought win. There are also plenty of manufacturers in the middle ground. But what impact does the size of a company have on the quality of its products? We took the question to this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Is there a correlation between the size of a manufacturer and the quality of its products – for better or worse?
Among its many uses and benefits, technology is a handy tool in the fantasy world of movie and television thrillers. We all know the scene: a vital plot point depends on having just the right super-duper gadget to locate a suspect or to get past a locked door. In movies and TV, face recognition is more a super power than a technical function. Video footage can be magically enhanced to provide a perfect image of a license plate number. We have all shaken our heads in disbelief, and yet, our industry’s technical capabilities are improving every day. Are we approaching a day when the “enhanced” view of technology in movies and TV is closer to the truth? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How much has the gap closed between the reality of security system capabilities and what you see on TV (or at the movies)?
How much does a security system cost? We all know that total costs associated with systems are substantially higher than the “price tag.” There are many elements, tangible and intangible, that contribute to the costs of owning and operating a system. Taking a broad view and finding ways to measure these additional costs enables integrators and users to get the most value from a system at the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO). However, measuring TCO can be easier said than done. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable to share the benefit of their collective expertise on the subject. Specifically, we asked: How should integrators and/or end users measure total cost of ownership (TCO) when quantifying the value of security systems?
In tidying up after a year of Expert Panel Roundtable questions and answers, we came across some previously unpublished responses from our panel. These interesting responses address some of the hottest topics in the industry, from robots and deep learning to the “race to the bottom.” Taken together, the varied comments offer their own range of insights into the evolving physical security market. This week, we highlight some of these assorted Expert Panellist comments submitted over the last several months.
Enterprise customers provide a large, and very lucrative, business opportunity for the physical security market. These customers include big global companies with plenty of revenue to spend and employees and facilities to protect. As a group, enterprise customers also tend to be a demanding lot, requiring systems that are large, scalable, that can operate across a wide geographic area, and that provide top-notch system performance. Enterprise customers set the standards of performance for the entire market, and they challenge manufacturers to up their game. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable to reflect on the industry’s biggest customers: What are the security challenges of the enterprise market?