National Police Week

Though National Police Week just passed, we’d like to remember the sacrifices that officers make in the line of duty. As reported by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) in their blog, 123 officers in uniform were lost in the line of duty last year.  That’s about one every third day. That’s unacceptable.

The blog points out, with that many deaths, you start to get good at the funerals. That’s tragic.

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Because SIAC works closely with many law enforcement groups, we have relationships with many of the agencies and officers involved. These deaths hit us hard; they are personal. They should be personal for all of us. The men and women who wear the law enforcement uniform are dedicated to protect the citizens in their communities.

The electronic security industry supplies technology that continues to enhance the ability of police to do their job more effectively and safely. We’re proud to be part of our industry. We urge our readers to support officers in the jurisdictions you serve, and find areas where you can improve officer safety. When you see a police officer or sheriff’s deputy, smile, shake their hand and thank them for their service to the community.

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ESX in Three Weeks

SIAC plans to be at ESX in Fort Worth June 8-10. Do you? If you’re a security systems integrator, monitoring company or manufacturer, we believe you should attend.

The ESX Convention and Conference has been in existence for over five years now, and demonstrated its value by bringing quality speakers, trainers and educational sessions to its program. In particular, we’ve found the Expo invaluable for networking and reconnecting with colleagues throughout our industry. It’s easy to lose touch as we go about our daily jobs, and attending ESX refreshes those relationships and your perspective on many of the challenges and opportunities the electronic security industry faces.

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Run your company more effectively. Grow your business in new ways. Maximize your central station profits. Rethink what the future holds for your customers and employees. The Expo focuses on those four core areas. Regardless of your business line, you’ll find sessions that benefit you, your business and your bottom line.

The ESX Expo delivers on a personal level. Like the city of Fort Worth, it’s down home. You will have time to get closer to your clients, share ideas and best practices. At SIAC, we share some of our successes over the past year working with jurisdictions across North America to ensure the best alarm management practices are implemented and help both the electronic security industry and the communities we serve. We’re looking forward to seeing you in a few weeks. Look for Stan Martin, Dave Simon, Ron Walters, Glen Mowrey, Jon Sargent. Ask us what’s new. We’ll be glad to share.

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Challenges that come with Growth

Security Sales and Integration (SSI) Magazine released a story recently that discussed the strength of the electronic security market for integrators, and laid out challenges. When it comes to improving alarm management practices, two of those challenges stood out to us: 1) training, and 2) competition.

It’s always important to train your employees, particularly the technical side of our craft, so your installations are top-of-the-line. Quality training is a differentiator for your business. Better installations reduce the need for follow-up troubleshooting with customers, and reduce complaints. From SIAC’s perspective, the added bonus is better installations means fewer nuisance alarm activations. That’s also good for your customers and a selling point for your business. Invest in your training for all the right reasons.

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Competition is another challenge we’d like to focus on. When you operate in a competitive environment, which is certainly the case in our industry, you must stand out in your own way. How is your business different/better than others? That’s where you find and keep customers. We believe that quality alarm management programs fit the bill.

Why? If you take care of alarm management issues (explain to customers how to safely operate their system, apply two-call confirmation at your monitoring center, use the best equipment in installations and train your people well), that becomes a selling point to prospective customers. Fewer unnecessary alarm activations mean fewer fines for customers. The inconvenience of dealing with alarms going off is minimized if you have a good alarm management program. In a competitive environment, that sets you apart.

Use your training and quality alarm management programs to set you apart from your competitors. For more tips, stop by our web site.

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Nevada, Colorado, Arizona, Illinois and Canada

Every two weeks, SIAC puts together an activity report. It details meetings with law enforcement, ordinances we’ve written and presentations made to alarm associations, among many other ongoing projects. Browsing the most recent report is telling.

What stands out is the breadth of where SIAC’s staff engages to help companies in the electronic security industry and the associations that represent our industry. We are asked frequently to attend meetings and use our experience to contribute language that improves local alarm ordinances.  Those requests and our involvement occur across North America.

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Looking at the most recent report, you find Steve Keefer working in Arizona, Colorado and Nevada. We see Jon Sargent handling details in Calgary, Edmonton and Quebec City in Canada, as well as Aspen, CO and East St. Louis, IL.  We cover jurisdictions large and small for you, across both Canada and the U.S. Glen Mowrey travels to meet police chiefs across the eastern seaboard and upper Midwest. Tom Sweeney attends key police association meetings throughout the northeast.

Our attendance and participation in these meeting serve our contributors as we use our knowledge, experience and connections to smooth out divisive issues. We contribute ideas and information that help the security industry’s business models, and local jurisdictions better handle alarm management issues.

By capturing our activities every two weeks, we get a clear picture of how we’re helping you and where the trouble spots are. SIAC then identifies what are the next best steps to ensure the most effective alarm response policies are implemented locally. Our report helps us prioritize. It also ensures we’re doing our job. We know that’s important so our supporters see the continual value we provide.

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What’s New Around the States

What’s new in your state? Where do you find information about permit requirements or alarm ordinances that affect you and your customers? If you are a member of your local or state alarm association, you should get updates from them. If not, we suggest you give SIAC at 972.377.9401 and we can attend a future meeting to give you a roundup not only for your area, but what is happening in terms of alarm management practices across North America.

Sometimes it’s that simple. We’ll come to your association meeting and help you out. But staying on top of these types of requirements on a regular basis is important to how you run your business, and ultimately your bottom line.

CAA

SIAC provides you free of charge regular weekly updates on the State Activity Report section of our Web site. Contact Stan Martin to gain access, by emailing him at: stan@siacinc.org. The report contains breaking news gathered by SIAC staff and through other news sources, and is one more way we consistently serve companies in the electronic security industry. Sign up here and click “Need Access?”.

If you don’t follow new police requirements for customers to register alarms, you and your customers could be breaking local law. We are not fear mongers, but we do believe it’s important for all businesses in our industry to operate under the correct rules and regulations. We help you do that. Then, you are following the law, doing the right things for your customers, and giving your company a leg up on the competition – a selling point to use during your prospecting.

Let us know how we can help you.

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Keeping up with Security Trends from ISC West

When you return from business trips, do you reflect afterwards? Do you read through the notes you wrote down and take action on key points or follow up with colleagues to better build your business? If not, we recommend that you set aside time for this type of reflection. Your business will improve because of it.

 

Two weeks ago at ISC West, several members of our SIAC team joined and participated in committee meetings and connected with association and industry colleagues. Those connections served an important function to keep us in close touch with those we serve. At the same time, there was more gained from the event.

ISC West

When you walk the floor at ISC West, regardless of how many years you’ve attended, you are struck by the awesome size of the convention and how many vendors attend. It never ceases to surprise us how many businesses there are in our industry. You can forget that. You can also forget the constantly changing face of technology. ISC West reminds you of that fact as well.

 

It’s when you return ISC West though and you reflect back on all that went on that you are struck by the opportunities for so many businesses to build successful models. Entrepreneurs, small-, mid- and large-sized businesses all flock to the event, and there are niche opportunities for all. We still see growth in the electronic security market. That stands out when you get back home – how many people still look at our industry and say, “There’s an opportunity here.”

 

We like that. SIAC believes that’s an important reminder for those of us who’ve been around the industry for awhile. What do you reflect on when you look back on ISC West? We hope you gained a new business insight, a market opportunity or even the nugget of an idea to influence your business model in a positive way. We did.

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Alarm Management Committees Work for the Security Industry AND Law Enforcement

Progress continues in creating state-by-state alarm management committees. As SIAC’s mission adapts to new issues, our job becomes more proactive. One of our major proactive actions is working with security industry and law enforcement officials to create these committees to help better manage alarms. This ensures a seat at the table for all parties, and that each voice is heard.

 

Our staff – particularly Glen Mowrey, Tom Sweeney and Steve Keefer – work diligently to grease the skids for these committees, share information and bring parties together to get started. This takes time, connections and constant effort. Because of their hard work, we have strong results to show.

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For example, we currently have 15 established committees in the following states: Tennessee; Connecticut; Florida, Virginia; Texas; Georgia; Minnesota; South Carolina; North Carolina; Michigan; Ohio; Mississippi; Alabama; Oklahoma; and Indiana. Some of the committees are not as strong or active as we would like, but most are vibrant, and the important point is that the security industry and law enforcement are working together.

 

In four other states, SIAC is in various stages of helping to get committees started. They include: Nevada; Utah; Pennsylvania; and Illinois.  That’s not all. Tom Sweeney, in the Northeast part of the U.S., is on a tear, meeting with officials to introduce and push the concept.

 

Just recently, he met with key law enforcement leaders in Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York. Those are high population states with many jurisdictions. Establishing successful alarm management committees will go a long way for our industry in ensuring consistent law enforcement response and fair alarm ordinances on the books. That benefits your company and frees you up to focus on running your business.

 

We are there to serve electronic security industry on this issue and many more. As a non-profit entity, SIAC needs your contributions. Check out our Donate button.

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