Which Security System should I buy?

Which Security System should I buy?

Are you perplexed about which product or solution to consider for purchase? Deciding how much money is fair to spend on a security system today can be a daunting task.  How to find the right resource to get help is also confusing. So many mergers and acquisitions, start-ups, buy-outs, pressured low cost pricing and the myriad of system choices create the hesitation to decide. Without investing serious research and investigation time into how far your money will go when purchasing a security system or solution for your agency, company or business would be irresponsible.  I have written this in order to help you start the process. This is based on my many years of interviewing people with problems who are in search of finding help and something to buy.  Here are a few simple recommendations will help you get started on the right track.

  1. Outline your problems. Include the basis of the problem along with details that surround the problem if you have an existing system that doesn’t work
  2. In a few short paragraphs define your needs. If you have an existing system, describe what needs to work in the new system, any features that are a must and or any other thing that is desired.
  3. If you security system is a requirement for your business to operate and has any regulatory requirements, discuss with your insurance company to find out the discounted monetary benefits.
  4. Define your budgetary limitations for the initial investment.
  5. Define your budgetary limitation for year 2 and 3. In many cases there are products or contractors that don’t support additional years of warranty at no charge. SMA and SSA type of arrangements should be brought out during proposal considerations.
  6. Interview a security consultant or engineering firm that specializes in risk management, risk advisory, security program administration and representation of owner for implementation of security systems. 
  7. Build a security plan and request for proposal.
  8. Interview electronic systems contractors or integrators who can participate in your RFP. These companies should be well vetted with BBB, professional associations, local referral list of clients and be ready to sign a performance contract.
  9. Ask for a field trip to see any type system or brand of system proposed. Getting first hand information from another similar system user can prove very helpful in the decision making process.

There are professional associations available as a resource to you, the end user.  The American Society of Industrial Security is our largest most value oriented association that glues law enforcement, end users, engineering firms, consultants and contractors together for ongoing education in the security industry.  Our firm can also be an excellent resource to help you become more educated about choosing the right product or solution. Contact us any time!

UL Listed Door Entry is important to K12 and Fire Marshalls

Having insight to what your needs are as an end user is important when purchasing a product to solve a problem, security need or industry mandate. Schools must preempt visitors through the main door accessing the interior of the building. Many people have reacted to the recent shootings to get a solution installed without much consideration for building code, fire code much less the future plans for how the system would interact with other facets of their infrastructure.

As it turns out the authority having jurisdiction is highly biased towards the UL certification standard when electrically controlling a door whether by the telephone system, a stand-alone intercom system or video surveillance system integrated to handle door control. When in doubt call your local building code official and fire marshall to clarify their requirements when controlling doors.photo

A list of product buying considerations for communicating with and controlling a door are:

  • UL Listing – we are talking US here not Canada or others
  • Network Agnostic – COTS available
  • Audible intelligence e.g. noise cancelling, auto microphone gain control, etc.
  • Telephony compatibility e.g. SIP, VOIP, iPBX integration
  • Video Surveillance compatibility for intercom door entry to be recorded
  • Vandal resistance along with camera covertness
  • Weather resistance

Some school districts are now having to remove their non-UL listed products due to the fire marshall inspections going on around this country today. Cheaper is not always better. Paying for stand alone products that use proprietary cabling cost more in the long run and are limited for integration with other systems.

Planning for the future of your telephony and security needs will save your school time and money!

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By developing revolutionary IP-based Intercom and PA solutions, we deliver clear, intelligible audio in highly noisy environments over standard power over Ethernet connections.

We provide audio solutions that seamlessly integrate into other commonly used technologies so a virtual presence can be achieved.