Building a Solution

There’s more than meets the eye to any integrator who is tasked with full building automation. I got a firsthand look at this growing market niche when I attended the Honeywell Building Solutions users’ track in Scottsdale, Ariz., in June. Nearly 200 users were in attendance discussing automation and control systems. Paul Bardon, general manager for the Americas, said Honeywell lists $12.5 billion in global sales, which includes building solutions, security and life safety.

A topic of prominence was video analytics. This made my ears perk up a bit because, as Bardon said, it registered nearly $37 billion in sales during 2007. Now we’re talking real money, even for Honeywell. The company, Bardon said, is a factory-driven group. Honeywell sells what it makes but also believes in best-of-breed deployment of equipment.

By industry, Honeywell goes after the usual suspects, including airports, industrial, commercial and government clients, healthcare, education and life sciences integration. That means security product integration is coupled with fire, IT, energy and HVAC.

So, where’s the growth anticipated in the building automation sector? You already know there is a “green” movement afoot. Honeywell officials all claimed that when a building is being retrofitted, or during new construction, the green advantage is first and foremost on everyone’s mind. It begins with all the usual suspects with the energy market in a major growth spurt. Higher education also is growing by leaps and bounds because of mass notification, but campuses also take part in the greening of North America through energy conservation programs.

What does all this have to do with security? Well, it’s all about video. As Honeywell officials said, motion detection or video analytics is the sensor of the future. And when there is new construction, bandwidth gets a prominent mention at the design table. Networks come first, meaning there will be plenty of bandwidth to handle all the components.

Remember a few years ago when convergence was all the rage? Bandwidth seemed to be an afterthought, but today it often begins the conversation and is the final note of the day. Adequate bandwidth will allow solutions to safeguard people, assets and intellectual property. It also plays a key role in access control, digital video and asset tracking. It’s all about security in one form or fashion.

Let’s take a look at a case study that tugs at the sensibilities of all security providers. In an emergency, schools need effective communication to keep parents, teachers and staff informed. Many school districts rely on phone trees and other outdated methods to deliver news. Today, there is a different approach. For example, Honeywell’s Instant Alert offers administrators the ability to broadcast messages directly to families and employees, wherever they are.

This is an integral part of building automation: preparing for the worst. From severe weather to acts of violence, schools nationwide are forced to deal with a variety of emergencies every year. As a result, districts and administrators have become well-versed in crisis planning. One basic element of an emergency plan is communication: knowing how to get the right information to the right people at the right time.

It sounds simple in our high-tech world, but it’s increasingly difficult given today’s on-the-go lifestyles and the variety of technologies people use to keep in touch. Placing a call to a home phone is not as effective as it used to be. The world of security demands notification technology as diverse as the many methods people now use. A Web-based notification system can broadcast messages to any communication device—phones, cell phones, pagers, e-mail and PDAs—by sending up to 100,000 30-second phone calls in 15 minutes and 6,400 text messages per minute.

With this kind of technology, people receive timely, accurate information in an emergency. It also helps schools focus their resources on managing the situation, not the phone lines. That’s why mass notification technology has gained traction.

“Security is an evolution for us,” said Luca Messei, vice president of marketing and strategy at Honeywell Building Solutions.

While security is our complete message each month at Security Products, we also delve into life safety and, once in a while, touch on building automation. Complete building automation allows the end user to provide quick and effective communication during a crisis. And it allows the right information to be presented at the right time.

Security and life safety management solutions can be customized to the needs of any facility, no matter the complexity. Your integrator can find best-of-breed products to employ advanced systems. Security solutions have the ability to collect, integrate and distribute information from multiple points. Honeywell Building Solutions officials say the right solution minimizes security breaches, speeds response time, helps reduce risk in an emergency, optimizes asset use and increases productivity.

The ability to process more information quicker gives the end user greater strategic control of an operation. Systems must do more than prevent and deter. There must be a managed response for risk mitigation.

Security is a serious business. End users should partner with an experienced leader with innovative solutions who has a vision to match their own.

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Digital Edition

  • Security Today Magazine - March 2019

    March 2019


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  • Environmental Protection
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