Can remote security management replace manned guards?
Pre the days of affordable electronic security, manned guarding combined with physical security measures – locks, bolts, fences etc. – was the only security option for most organisations.
Remote monitoring vs manned security
Many previously on-site functions within organisations are now regularly performed remotely, from banking through to meetings. Similarly, in our private lives we use apps and mobile devices to undertake our day-to-day activities, like shopping and checking our home is safe and secure (even though we may be half way round the world!).
So why, when remote technology is readily available do so many organisations continue with traditional on-premises-only security? Why persist in paying large sums of money for physical security guards when remote security is an effective and more cost-efficient alternative?
In this blog we will cover:
- Remote monitoring - what are the cost benefits?
- Remote guarding functionality - what are the advantages?
- Remote security management vs manned guarding - would having both be better than just one?
- Can you replace all manned guarding with remote security monitoring?
- Risks associated with manned guarding staff – how a pandemic can affect your business as usual
- Adding remote monitoring to your security
Remote monitoring - what are the cost benefits?
Remote security monitoring offers many of the same advantages as manned guarding at a fraction of the cost whilst providing the same visual deterrent as a security guard does.
- 80% saving - remote security management can save you up to 80% of the cost of using security guards or patrols.
- Reduce storage space for security documentation - it removes the burden of archiving, be that activity reports or footage for documentation and evidence (which has the added bonus of reducing resource consumption in terms of server and storage space!).
- Reduced maintenance calls - It can also reduce the number of maintenance calls and system downtime - costs that quickly add up when unchecked.
- Staff payroll savings - manned security may not have the upfront cost, but there’s a never ending one when you have extra staff on the payroll and it’s considerably higher than renting a security system.
Remote guarding functionality - what are the advantages?
When it comes to functionality, remote security management has some serious advantages over security guard services.
- Working 24/7 - with the onset of widely available and sophisticated CCTV technology, you can see multiple locations and even long distances in the dark. You can identify an intruder and activate an alert which transfers LIVE footage to our 24/7 monitoring centre where our professionals can respond quickly to any suspicious activity.
- Remote location monitoring - remote CCTV monitoring is ideal for remote locations, where it would be prohibitively expensive to use manned guarding. In some instances, it can be used for other security purposes, such as business processes and health and safety.
- Safety first - safety is a concern when it comes to manned guarding. If a camera is attacked and vandalised, the electronics can easily be replaced. If a guard is attacked, it’s a very different matter.
Remote security management vs manned guarding - would having both be better than just one?
- Combining CCTV and manned guarding - typically, this scenario has guards to monitor live camera feeds from a control/security room and then investigate incidents accordingly. Out of hours, or when a guard isn't present, this can switch to a remote monitoring service.
So, here comes the big question: Can you replace all manned guarding with remote security monitoring?
The answer is yes, in many cases (but with the caveat ‘not all’). This can be achieved through video surveillance monitoring by a third party, sometimes referred to as ‘remote guarding’ or a ‘virtual guard service’. It requires a comprehensive CCTV system to cover areas of risk, with live feeds back to a remote monitoring centre.
STANLEY Security’s state-of-the-art NSI Gold approved Monitoring Centre provides round the clock monitoring by highly trained security experts. They are trained in what to look for and are quick to react to situations, such as sending alerts to you or calling the emergency services when necessary.
This approach has all the advantages of a CCTV system, along with continuous 24/7 surveillance, video storage (compliant with GDPR) and real time alerts. The cost benefit of replacing on site guards are also significant with a reduction of between 65-80%.
Risks associated with manned guarding staff – how a pandemic can affect your business as usual
- Safeguarding people - in Safeguarding people - when experiencing a health crisis, reducing the need for manned guarding through implementing video surveillance monitoring avoids putting people at risk of contact unnecessarily.
- Lockdown staffing issues - staff shortages can affect the manned guarding sector considerably if there is a need for self-isolation, meaning staffing can becomes problematic. Guard providers may have to employ temporary and part time workers to fill the gaps and these staff may lack experience - it’s worth considering the impact that may have on the level of security being provided.
Adding remote monitoring to your security
Security has come a long way from the night watchman patrolling a building with a large set of keys jangling by his side. Yes, manned guarding still has a role to play in the security sector, but much of his/her duties have been subsumed by electronic security which is often more effective from both a cost and a security point of view.
Organisations should now be considering how they can leverage remote management services to maintain their security now and well into the future.
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