Much has changed in the security market in recent years, and the options available to integrators and end users are extremely flexible and varied. Never has the potential to create solutions that meet the exact needs of any given application been greater. However, is a change in attitude necessary to get the best results?
There is an old saying: ‘If you always do what you always did, you always get what you always got’. In essence, what it refers to is that in order to move forwards, you sometimes need to change the way that you work. It’s a positive message, and one taken on board by many as they develop and grow their businesses. It is also very apt for those professionals involved in the modern security and safety arena.
In the past, many security and safety solutions involved a fair degree of compromise. It was a case of balancing the risks a site faced with the technological capability of the systems. The latter element was controlled by the capacity of the technology and the budget of the end user.
Invariably, compromises had to be made with regard to the number of supported devices, the performance of numerous devices when used simultaneously, and even the way that systems were designed. As many systems reached a point beyond which they could not advance without a sea-change in technology, it meant that many had to accept an almost formulaic approach to design. There wasn’t much that anyone could do about this, because the limiting factor was the technology itself.
To be fair, the so-called new and emerging technologies in the market have been around for a few years now. The reason that widespread adoption wasn’t achieved more rapidly is because we didn’t have the full tool-box to create the required systems. Where the technologies did exist, the final systems were simply upgraded replicas of those that had gone before. In other words, the new flexible technology was used to create systems as limited as those using the older technologies, because the established design model was simply replicated.
In the past 12 months, there has been a significant shift in the potential for designing bespoke solutions, as many manufacturers have delivered more flexible products and systems. This has allowed specifiers and integrators to work with end users, to design and deliver truly bespoke solutions that meet the customer’s needs and expectations. In turn, end users have been able to purchase solutions that have true value, and which offer everyday benefits along with the security and safety elements that are at their core.
Whilst many have grasped the opportunities now available with both hands, there are still some who remain focused on the systems and methodologies they have always used. This is applicable to those involved in the purchase and specification of solutions. A number of integrators, specifiers, consultants and end users need to ensure that they have a full understanding of what is available, and what is possible, from today’s solutions and technologies.
Accepting the limitations and compromises of the past can only result in inflexible systems that will never meet all of the user’s needs, or indeed match their expectations. For many, it is time to reconsider what they do, and how they do it.