Designer Offers 5 Benefits
Why the end user needs one and how system integrators can work with them
- By Bret Emerson
- Jan 01, 2015
It’s getting harder for building owners and system integrators to keep up
with the latest trends in security. Every day there is a new technology
emerging and business owners and system integrators need to make sure
they are keeping up. By adding a design consultant to the mix, a system
integrator can work more effectively with the end user, and the end user will
know that the systems are designed to specifically meet their unique needs.
When a designer is hired by an end user to design a system, they have
some control in how the system is bid out and how the owner might choose to
install the systems. In order to be considered for a job, the designer needs to
know the integrators in each region of the country, the systems the integrator
sells and installs and the quality of their work. By being a known integrator
that does good work, there is a much better chance the designer and owner
will consider that integrator for projects.
The biggest issue for an integrator is learning how to work with the design
consultant and maximize the relationship. Have you considered hiring a design
consultant for a particular project, but did not really understand the role
a designer plays in the process? This can be a common problem and without
the proper information on hand a good decision cannot be made. It is important
to understand the value and role a design consultant plays in the project
and how to build a long lasting relationship with them.
What is a Technology Design Consultant?
First, it is important to explain the exact role the consultant plays in the overall
picture, and the type of services they can provide to the end user. A security
designer is a person or group that helps the end user realize their technology
goals and brings in new ideas and recommendations from other similar
projects. The consultant can speak to architects and engineers and provide
detailed documentation so the end user knows exactly what they are getting
before, during and after the installation.
The design consultant can make projects flow smoother and saves the end
user time and money; which in return saves the integrator. With myriad of security
designers available to work with, it’s important to make sure you build
relationships/partnerships with a competent designer. Referrals are a great
way to grow your business and achieve success.
Five Benefits of Working with
A Security Design Consultant
See the entire picture. A security designer sees the entire picture where an integrator
can have tunnel vision and is limited to exactly what they are providing.
Design consultants will create floor plans showing each device and how
it is connected along with specifications detailing what the system will do.
In addition, an integrator can rely on the consultant to make decisions
based on the client’s budget and build project timelines. This enables the integrator
to stay on time and on budget on important security projects.
Provide security assessments. A security designer will work with the end
user to collect information and make security assessments prior to creating a security
design. A threat assessment is conducted that involves a process of finding
out the real and perceived threats to the security of the client’s facility and people.
The consultant finds out what needs to be protected, who are the threats
and vulnerabilities, what are the implications if they were damaged or lost,
and what is their value to the organization. The consultant saves the integrator
time and money by doing the due diligence for them and ensuring the right
system is implemented.
Great source of referrals. A security design consultant can be a great
source of referrals for a security integrator. The design consultant has relationships
with owners, architects and engineers and is asked for their recommendations
on who can provide the systems needed for the bidding process.
By building strong relationships with the design consultant, an integrator
is setting the stage for future opportunities and can create a mutual beneficial
relationship for both parties. In return, the integrator can bring the designer
in on projects that require a complete technology design package.
Industry specialist/expert on your team. The consultant works as part of
the design team and knows how each step of the design and implementation
process works for the security system. By working with a designer who specializes
in the security industry it makes it easier for the integrator to provide
the best security technology to meet the client’s needs.
The designer will be able to provide clear direction on what types of security
technology is required and create floor plans showing each device and how it is
connected, for instance card readers, cameras and monitors. The clients feel like
they are getting the best advice possible from an industry expert along with the
best possible price, which leads to satisfied customers for the integrator.
Manages installation process/reduces errors. By working with a design
consultant, the integrator can focus on the installation and not worry about
managing the process. It is sometimes difficult, as an integrator, to get paid for
the design and the installation.
The design consultant will work with the entire team to ensure that the
project runs smoothly; which in return reduces costly errors from happening.
The value of building a long term relationship with an industry specific
design consultant is extremely high for the integrator. The consultant does
not only keep integrators connected to the end user but they also can become
a great vehicle for referrals. It is important to stay connected to a design consultant
and ensure that they know who you are and what you do for future
It is equally as important for building owners to develop strong relationships
with design consultants. By having them on your team, the building
owner is getting the best advice possible to help build a security system that
meets their needs. The owner can relax knowing that their best interest is at
heart to protect their building and employees.
The security consultant will take the time to review past occurrences at
specific locations and provide a security assessment. In addition, the building
owner can rest easy knowing they are getting the best advice from an independent
voice outside of the security systems being installed. Whether you
are an integrator or building owner; the benefits of having a design consultant
on your team is a win/win situation for both parties.
This article originally appeared in the January 2015 issue of Security Today.