Assessing your Security Needs
Security systems are technological and can accomplish many things. You will need to start your analysis by identifying your true needs versus the wants and what has caused you to start researching security systems. Be prepared when you make contact with potential vendors of your security system, as they will likely conduct a risk-assessment of your situation to identify those needs and wants. Here is a short list of considerations for both homeowners and businesses in identifying the main needs of most security buyers:
- What are your main needs? Most security providers break their technology and product offerings into Six main groups: Burglar alarm systems, Fire and Life Safety systems, Closed Circuit Television systems (CCTV), Access Control Systems, Electronic Asset Protection, and monitoring and servicing of these systems. As you pursue potential vendors that will provide you your security solution, remember you are still the customer and your needs are the most important. Allow the potential security provider to offer ideas and ask questions probing your needs and the proper security provider will be the one with the most comprehensive solution based on your needs today and into the future.
- What are your wants or unknowns in security systems? Many homeowners start with a simple burglar alarm system to give them perimeter protection but don’t realize the value that a couple of monitored smoke detectors or carbon monoxide detectors can add to their system. There are many cases in which “monitored” systems with this protection have literally saved lives and should be considered. For businesses that are seeking fire and life safety systems, your security provider will be able to give you more direction as it often will depend on the local codes on how your system will be designed.
- How will your alarm system transmit the signal? Whether you are a homeowner or a business, consider what types of phone transmission you have on site and tell your security provider what you are currently using. Many people don’t even have standard telephone lines in their homes our use services such as Vonage or other internet phone services which can cause havoc with transmitting your alarm signals. All reputable security companies have the means to communicate your alarm signals outside of these technologies, but it is important that you as the customer disclose this information to your potential security provider.
- For CCTV Systems: What are your expectations in seeing potential situations? When it comes to this technology, the options are seemingly endless. Yes, your security provider will likely have the products that can give you the opportunity to zoom into a license plate at 500 feet, but is that a realistic need and do you have the budget in place to make it a reality? A quality security provider will ask all the pertinent questions and asses your particular situation as it relates to your CCTV needs. Some of the things to consider are: lighting, field of view, recording device and storage time of that recording device, and the ability to access the cameras remotely.
- What is the Return on Investment? Consider the potential losses you will incur without a proper security system in place versus what the potential savings will be by installing a system that has the ability to reduce the likelihood of those losses. Compare those losses with the investment in a proper system and fully understand how quick the payback of a security system will be. Also ask your insurance provider if they offer a discount off of your premium if you install a monitored security system. Many insurance providers will offer up to 20% off of your annual insurance premium.
Considering the amount of technologies that are available to security providers it is important that you as the customer has a full understanding of what your real needs are before entering into an agreement with the potential provider of your security. Once you have made your investment into your security system, be sure to have the technician fully train you and all pertinent members of your family or business staff on the features of the system so that everyone is comfortable in operating it. Most importantly – use the system as it is designed to be used and you will find that this technology will make life more convenient!
MNESTA Training Class
September 12, 2013more info
MNESTA Training Class
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