Just a snippet of information

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Saturday, March 1, 2003

Publisher, Security Systems News

In one week I attended two conferences. The first was about integrated security systems for corporate, industrial and homeland security, and the other was about mass marketing, or rather mass monitoring and the current financial structure on this side of our industry. Talk about covering the gamut…I’m going to share some quotes that jumped out at me from the dozens of speakers I listened to.

“It will take 12 hours for the federal government to respond to any disaster. State and local government will have to respond first. - For every dollar spent on protecting your company, seven dollars in future losses are saved. - Every guard that leaves your company knows every hole in your fence. - If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys. - When you centralize monitoring, you centralize expenses. - There were 12 people on our steering committee, security, IT, facilities, HR, the lawyers, and the procurement department. We didn’t pick each product, it was about access control. The members on the committee changed throughout the one-year process. We tossed out those who didn’t agree. Engineers want to play and that’s too costly. Ultimately the CEO made the decision, I don’t think that he needed to be involved in this but in the end it came down to one person making the final decision. We went with…the access control system. Security is first, one database tracks it all, and notifies the other departments. - IT always had concerns about the bandwidth. They have a six -lane highway, with our scooter going down it. We must kill the adversarial relationship with IT by involving them right from the beginning. - IT security is a separate issue.

No, we didn’t use a national integrator…a national integrator is only as good as their local office. - The bottom line was buying best of the best… with proven capabilities. - Decline in basic values, reduces personal accountability. There’s an expansion of rights, judicial tolerance and an increased emphasis on self. The economic impact of this is decreased morale and productivity, increased costs across the board and decreased competition. - The ROI on a truly integrated system (lighting, HVAC, security) is increased efficiency and lower costs. - It’s not what you know about security, it’s what you know about the company. It’s not about lights, cameras and control panels. It’s a people business and working with all the departments. The culture of the client is key to whether you’re going to do business…it has everything to do with helping a company be successful. You need to be a business guy who knows about security. Spend an hour a day on ceoexpress.com if you want to know what running a business is all about.

“The Europeans have a renewed interest in security and recurring revenue. There’s a paradigm shift because Europe has outgrown their own markets and are interested in buying expertise that offers a solutions approach. - Siemens is three times the size of Tyco. - Marginal operations are no longer in business and therefore we’re a better industry. If it’s profitable, that’s what we like. - The challenge to the industry is management talent. There’s a shortage of quality management here…in every industry. - Home systems are 50 percent of the growth in the residential market from the prior year.

“Overall, residential alarm installations are down or flat. We need to price (alarms) to go up. Opportunities lie in selective price increases, charging fair dollars for installation. Think images and video. Access and CCTV are making it happen in commercial revenue. - Zero down is dead or at least gasping and it’s great. It’s about time. - Watch the top end of the markets’ cash…Where they go, we all go. - There are seven million people in the U.S. that shouldn’t be here. We don’t know where they are. Seventy percent of criminals are caught through traffic violations.

“The Department of Homeland Security, Capitol Hill, the House and Senate are making specific recommendations to policy advisors for standardized systems and procedures.

“Standardized ID systems, not ID cards but standard information throughout all areas. (Retired Vice Adm. John M.) Poindexter is looking at the biggest information structure ever seen. - Integrated systems and intensive information systems are in the future. IBM, Microsoft … will all get into this game. - Boeing, Northrop Grumman, Lockheed or government contractors have tremendous management skills. Security providers will contract and sub contract for them.

“First responders are who will fight this war.”

And so the information presented came full circle.

This is but a snippet of the information presented! If you’d like more information on either of these conferences, contact the Security Industry Association at www.corporatesecurityroundtable.com or Barnes Associates, St. Louis, Mo., at www.barnesassociates.com or Buchanan Ingersoll in Pittsburgh, Pa. at www.buchananingersoll.com.