Honeywell shows off new Headquarters, Alarm museum
MELVILLE, N.Y.--The May 21 opening of HoneywellÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Ademco Alarm Security Museum and tour of HoneywellÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s new headquarters featured both a trip down memory lane and a glimpse into the future.
I joined a handful of trade reporters and members of HoneywellÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s First Alert Professional PresidentÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Council (the top 15 First Alert dealers) at the event. Honeywell Security president Ben Cornett and First Alert president Joe Sausa were there; the surprise guest was Leo Guthart, former president of Ademco. Ralph Sevinor, president of Wayne Alarm Systems, received special thanks for his help developing the museum.
Honeywell Security and Custom Electronics president Ron Rothman led the Ã¢â‚¬Å“backstage tourÃ¢â‚¬Â of the spiffy new Honeywell facility. In the engineering department, several products were on display (some prototypes, some awaiting launch, some European models that may or may not come to the Americas).
Gordon Hope showed us around AlarmNet, and we explored the Quality Assurance department where they shake, shower, strike-with-lightning and otherwise abuse products to ensure quality. The goal is not to see if the products will pass a test, Rothman said, but rather to see at what point they will fail.
Guthart established the QA department in the early Ã¢â‚¬â„¢80s. To avoid any rubber stamping of products, QA reports to the business leader rather than to engineering. Rothman said-and several FAP dealers (including John Jennings of Safeguard Security and John Bourque of HB Alarm) reiterated-that the establishment of this department, along with the sales acumen of Guthart, helped Ã¢â‚¬Å“turn around AdemcoÃ¢â‚¬Â at a time when some of its products were not up to snuff.
In his 25-year tenure with the company, Rothman said the products have changed dramatically, but the design parameters established by Guthart have not. Tasked with manufacturing products that have to work in Ã¢â‚¬Å“the worst possible environment Ã¢â‚¬Â¦ there might be humidity, cobwebs, bugs, you name it Ã¢â‚¬Â¦ but our products have to work Ã¢â‚¬Â¦ they canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t interfere [with other electronics], they canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t be interfered with, they canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t cost a heck of a lot, they have to work for more than 20 years, and they have to work every single time, or weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve failed.Ã¢â‚¬Â Some new entrants into security manufacturing, particularly from the Ã¢â‚¬Å“cable, computer and telecommunications industries, may think itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s easy to manufacture reliable security products. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s not,Ã¢â‚¬Â Rothman said.