ESA Summit Rocks Again


The Electronic Security Association (ESA) Summit rocked again this year. Just completed last week in Chandler, AZ, ESA brought together leadership throughout our industry and introduced multiple amazingly-talented speakers to share their knowledge. Anyone who attended gained a great learning experience.


For those of you who missed it, plan to attend next year. It’s a seminal event, and different from many of the other conferences or seminars put on for the electronic security industry. The Summit is not about selling. It’s about building your business, making key contacts and growing yourself as a leader.

We all need to take time out to refresh, retrain and rebuild our minds, energy, spirit and skills. The Summit is a wonderful venue for that to occur. ESA takes pains to bring in high quality speakers from diverse backgrounds to help you innovate, develop better creative ideas, invigorate your marketing and improve your customer service. If you attended and took notes, we’re extremely confident you walked away with 5-10 tips that will help you improve your business. Make sure to refer to those notes in the coming weeks to stay focused on implementing the messages you captured. If you just took notes but don’t do anything about it when you get back to your office, then you lose any potential long-term benefit.


The Summit also gets you away from your day-to-day routine, and gives you time to meet with others, participate in fun events and recognize your peers. We believe that’s another great benefit of the Summit.


If you didn’t attend, here are some names to remember and Google (if you did attend, these are names to refer back to):  Dennis Snow (; Shelley Row (; Avish Parashar (; Adele Cehrs ( Check them out. We didn’t get to see everyone, but the speakers we saw and the sessions we attended were great and we highly recommend them. Hope to see you all next year.

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Great Partnering Leads to Industry-Wide Recognition Under the Police Dispatch Quality Award

Great partnering leads to success in many different ways. It helps businesses grow by expanding their markets. Partnering inherently builds unity as two groups come together, leading to a broader vision or solution to a problem. Partnering can also bring together parties that sometimes appear to have different agendas, and demonstrate how they have common ground.


The Police Dispatch Quality (PDQ) Award is the latter. Partnering between a security company and local law enforcement in a jurisdiction that the company operates in is a key to PDQ award winners. SIAC, which helps annually sponsor the award (now entering its 11th year, BTW) along with Security Sales & Integration Magazine (SSI), and the False Alarm Reduction Association (FARA), encourages and supports these types of partnerships. It’s a major reason we stepped up when the concept of this award was brought to us 11 years ago. We felt and believe that law enforcement-security company partnerships are critical to the success of improving alarm management practices.


Not only that, the PDQ promotes communication between companies in our industry and law enforcement officials. We believe it is important to grow these relationships, and publicizing these partnerships helps this cause.


Ultimately though, the PDQ winner must demonstrate a high quality alarm management program, working effectively in conjunction with law enforcement from a local jurisdiction. We encourage your company to apply:  The deadline for applications is March 7, so please look into your programs and process now. Don’t leave this until the last minute.


Why apply?  The benefits are many: Your company receives free industry-wide publicity for winning. The award is a feather in your cap, something to use in promoting your business. A $1,000 stipend (courtesy of Honeywell) to attend the Electronic Security Expo in Fort Worth, TX this June is provided to the winner. The Installation Quality (IQ) program supports the PDQ, allowing you to gain additional positive visibility.


Past winners can attest to the value of the PDQ to their business. They include (from most recent): Habitec; Monitronics; Vector Security; HS Technology Group; Custom Alarm; Broadview Security (now ADT); Atronic Alarms (Lenexa, KS); Alarm Detection Systems; Brink’s Home Security; Vector Security.


That’s a great group of high quality companies. Wouldn’t you like to see your program featured along with them as another great partner in the industry?

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Security Tips From ADT

There are many ways security companies benefit their customers. The goal is always protection of homes, businesses, people and property, while offering key products and services sought by customers.  Each company seeks to distinguish itself.


ADT, a key long-term supporter of SIAC and our programs, is the largest provider of home security services in North America. Beyond their experience, ADT sets itself apart by offering special tips to customers on its Web site ( to help homeowners stay safe both inside and outside their homes. Small tips add up to greater protection.


As we’ve grown our alarm management game, we too see that small steps often lead to incremental, long-term improvements. We’ve learned from ADT’s example in sharing this type of information that electronic security companies must take that first step to improve their alarm management practices, then build on it.

ADT’s offerings of advice are different than ours. They include tips on:  home security; digital security; deceptive sales safety; senior safety; car safety; pet owner; and back to school.  As you can see, the tips are not “just” about selling systems. It’s about providing useful information to current and prospective customers.

Similarly, that is one of SIAC’s most important goals:  making sure we offer the highest quality and most up-to-date information to help communities implement the most effective alarm management policies.  We hope our tips are relevant as ADT’s.  Check us out at:


SIAC thanks ADT for their ongoing and long-term support. Contributors like ADT keep us going, teach us, and allow SIAC to get out in front of critical alarm management issues so you don’t have to.

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Honeywell Teaches Through Video

One of the under-sung training tools available these days is the short video put together by a company looking to explain a product or service.  Given the tools on your smart phone (we presume you have one), you can easily have someone speak or demonstrate a new product, how to use it, or help resolve a customer complaint through a visual demonstration.

Honeywell Security is adept at this, putting out videos that not only help you use their products, but employ those products effectively.  That ensures newer technology is used the right way.  It also matters on the alarm management front, as customers who are better informed on security technology actually use that equipment more effectively, thus reducing user errors.


You can take a look at one of their videos here,, which was posted to YouTube.  That’s another way Honeywell expands the reach of their messages, by creating greater access to their materials – put it out on social media to share.

Honeywell has supported SIAC consistently year after year.  We are deeply appreciative of their support and the positive tone they set for our industry.

As companies in the electronic security industry seek to run their businesses more effectively and implement better technologies sought by customers, Honeywell’s leadership is worth noting.  We may just take a page from their book one of these days.  Look for us at

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Revising the Mobile Security Device Standard

It’s easy to get bogged down with work so extra details don’t always get the attention they deserve.  When it comes to developing strong security industry standards, that’s where the Security Industry Association ( comes in.  They look at areas where our industry needs help.  Then they establish the necessary group to work on a specific standard, invite key members to participate, and keep the process moving so positive revisions are developed and implemented.

We strongly support SIA’s work.  SIA makes our industry better on a fundamental level.  We are also extremely pleased that they help SIAC out as one of our key contributors.

mobile device

Just recently, SIA announced its Standards Program will be undertaking a revision of the MSD-01 Mobile Security Devices Standard – Monitoring Practices for False Dispatch Prevention document.

SIA issued an informal Call for Interest to stand up and populate the working group that will work on the standard.  They have secured the support of a number of interested law enforcement liaisons that could help with the revision, and the support of interested industry experts will ensure an updated standard that benefits both industry and its key stakeholders.

The revision efforts will begin in Q1 2016. If you or your organization is interested in participating, please send an email to Joe Gittens at  SIAC encourages you to contact Joe in support of this effort.  The more engagement we get on these types of issues, the stronger our industry becomes.

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What Changes as the Calendar Flips to 2016?

As the calendar flips to 2016, many of us look back on the previous year, then forward to the coming year, and make resolutions.  We promise to ourselves that we’ll change a bad behavior.  We set new objectives for our businesses.  We say we’ll lose weight, eat better.

Sometimes those resolutions work.  Most of the time, we stick with the new agenda for a few months, then slowly it fades into the background.


SIAC takes a slightly different approach.  Our biggest successes occur when we incrementally build on something we’ve accomplished.  We advocate an approach of replicating success.  Try it in your 2016 business model.

Go back and look at where your biggest sales occurred during 2015.  Find customers who were extremely pleased with your service.  Ask them questions.  Find out what you did right, and more importantly, maybe what you did differently that made you stand out to these customers.

Always look for new opportunities, measure the risk/cost in resources, never betting “the farm” but exercising wisdom and investing a reasonable amount in an area that could improve your overall performance.  I’ve always believed the people who never fail are the ones who never step out and try something new.

We believe it’s those qualities of “what you did differently” that you should focus on, because that’s what we do here at SIAC to continue modifying our approaches to improve alarm management practices across North America.  If we kept doing the same thing, that might be okay at times, but our results wouldn’t vary.  To improve, we must look at how to replicate past success, and how to build on that.

We work hard to support the electronic security industry.  We share our successes. And, we analyze what went wrong when we fall down so that we don’t do it again.  SIAC builds off both these actions, and as our changing approaches make a positive difference, they help everyone in the electronic security industry.

Stan Martin

Wishing you the best in the new year.

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Crime has no Boundaries

Crime has no boundaries.  Violence occurs in nations around the globe.  Drug and human trafficking crosses from one country to another.  Terrorism is a worldwide problem.


Terrence M. Cunningham, President of the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), focused on the global issues for law enforcement surrounding crime in his most recent column.  You can access it here:  In short, his point is that we need to bond together to find the most effective approaches to combat the common threats every country faces.


We should all take his message to heart in the electronic security industry.  Businesses in our industry can learn from others the most effective approaches to protect your home and businesses.  SIAC, in turn, shares the best alarm management practices with companies, associations and individuals across North America.  Find out what works, then apply that solution.


Chief Cunningham’s message is a smart and strong one.  We, too, believe in finding common solutions.  If you are looking for help or insights regarding alarm management issues, reach out to SIAC:

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