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Selling physical security systems to the C-suite

Selling physical security systems to the C-suite

AfricaDigital TransformationEnterprise SecurityMiddle EastTop Stories

Wissam Acra, Regional Sales Director of Genetec, discusses how to establish your vision for a unified physical security solution and how to take a strategic approach to presenting your proposal to C-suite executives.

When it comes to budgeting, physical security technology has been historically regarded as a sunk cost, an operational necessity focused on protecting people and assets. However, with technological advances and the Digital Transformation of organisations, this perspective is beginning to change as executives become more aware of the value unlocked by data-driven insights. In fact, according to RationalStat’s analysis, the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region’s physical security market is projected to reach an impressive US$ 3.0 billion by 2028.

Having sufficient data management and structure is key to unlocking the value of physical security data. This requires a shift to open, unified platforms that combine various functions, such as video management (VMS), access control (ACS), license plate recognition (ALPR), intrusion monitoring, point-of-sale (POS) reporting and other functions in a single interface. A unified physical security system offers benefits beyond security, improving operations and shaping the enterprise as a whole. The key to selling a unified security platform to the C-suite is in elevating it from a departmental cost to an enterprise-wide investment and showing how it impacts the business interests they value.

Establish your vision for a unified physical security solution

It is crucial to bring your C-team up to speed on the industry’s shift from siloed, standalone systems to open, unified platforms. These platforms integrate VMS, ACS, ALPR and other functions into a single system, providing access to the entire security operation from one screen. Unlike systems with mere SDK or API integration, true unification happens at the data level, allowing interaction with events and information across all sub-systems. When all elements of a physical security system work together in a unified way, they not only secure an enterprise, but yield actionable business intelligence that can be leveraged and combined with operational data to improve efficiency.

Have the conversation about ROI

To achieve ROI for your security system and clarify the security investment in enterprise-wide risk management, meaningful conversations about goals and data are crucial. Identify where the leadership team envisions the organisation in the next five or 10 years and determine the data, features, or insights that would best support these goals. A unified software platform enables improved metric tracking and collaboration across departments, leading to better decisions and potentially higher ROI.

Enhancing collaboration, automation, visibility and operational changes can yield significant benefits by eliminating redundancies, reallocating resources and reducing costs. A unified platform for data integration brings cost savings, simplified training, increased efficiency and flexibility in component selection. Data-driven insights enhance efficiency and guest experiences, while considering ROI should include total cost of ownership to avoid long-term expenses.   

Conversations for IT: Streamlined maintenance, cloud and cybersecurity

As the keeper of the organisation’s technology stack and network, the C-team member from IT is an important ally and it’s critical that they understand the potential of a unified physical security system in the context of the organisation’s technology priorities overall. Demonstrate how an open, unified security system streamlines maintenance and upgrades, gives them agility and flexibility around hardware and software, enables cloud deployment and improves cybersecurity.

A unified physical security system simplifies maintenance and system configurations and supports cloud, hybrid-cloud and on-premises deployments, offering flexibility and scalability. This integration of cybersecurity and privacy measures in a unified solution alleviates the burden on IT and security teams by outsourcing software monitoring, patching and updating to the vendor.

How a physical security system can help improve operations

Data from physical security systems can benefit multiple departments and industries. A unified platform allows each department to create personalised dashboards, enabling quick identification of trends, threats and opportunities. For instance, retail stores and venues utilise video analytics to alert management about long queues, prompting them to open additional checkout lanes and reduce cart abandonment. ALPR data helps retailers identify out-of-state customers for targeted marketing campaigns, while airports can redirect people to overflow parking areas by promptly updating digital signage based on parking lot occupancy. Taking a strategic approach to presenting your proposal to C-suite executives can help them recognise the value of the data-driven insights provided by unified physical security systems and see them as much more than a risk-mitigating tool. And as that happens, security departments are seen less as a cost centre and more as active and central players in their organisations’ Digital Transformation of operations and strategic planning.

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