Maintaining Customer Trust
- By Ralph C. Jensen
- Nov 01, 2017
There are a few things you should know about the consulting
business in the security industry. First, it is a
must to be a trusted security advisor. Chad Parris and
Lynda L. Buel know this well, and believe it so much so
that it is part of the company profile. They are Security
Risk Management Consultants (SRMC), trusted security advisors.
Based in Columbus, Ohio, their work extends well beyond the
confluence of the Scioto and Olentangy rivers. Columbus is the 14th
largest city and the third most populous state capital city in the U.S.
There is also, of course, the Ohio State football Buckeyes.
STRETCHING ITS ROOTS
Columbus is a pretty amazing city. All that aside, this is the place that
SRMC has set its roots, which stretch worldwide. The security business
is alive and well, thanks to the company’s holistic security process.
“We start with a comprehensive review of any given security situation;
from a current plan to technology needs, policies, procedures
and processes,” said Parris, an owner and president of SRMC. “We
augment what we learn with real-world expertise to create a custom
security solution, designed to keep our clients in front of an everevolving
The fact is a custom solution helps protect people, property and assets
that seamlessly integrate into the end user’s mission and culture.
“It is important that we become and maintain the status as a
trusted advisor to the end user as well as architects and engineers,”
said Buel, also an owner and the CEO of this certified woman-owned,
independent security consulting organization. “We travel all over
the country, attend a lot of conferences and seminars so that our
clients trust that we know what we’re talking about; and when the
time comes, we can present technology benefits, interoperability and functionality of security systems. We must continue to offer value to
I might be getting a little ahead of the overall story, because SRMC
is really one of the best kept secrets in the security consulting industry.
While that isn’t always a good thing, it doesn’t stop end users,
architects and engineers from calling when they need help, integrity
and knowhow is a must.
BUILDING A BUSINESS TOGETHER
Parris and Buel have a similar track into the physical security industry,
and the one link that brings them face to face, is working with and
learning from Elliott A. Boxerbaum, who sadly passed away in 2014.
Boxerbaum never knew a stranger, and to his credit, hand-picked
the executive team (Parris and Buel) he wanted to work with in bringing
together SRMC. Boxerbaum honed his talent maximizing and designing
security services while serving as the director of protective
services at Ohio Health, director of safety and security at Ohio State
University Hospitals and a police supervisor with Ohio State University
Technological advancements and futuristic gadgets were both a
love and hobbies of Boxerbaum’s. You could bet that his latest gadget
was light-years ahead of the curve. He was passionate about the security
industry and advocated for its progress. He was driven and hardworking,
always striving to improve and ensure the industry was at
its highest standard.
It was this drive that ensured those who Boxerbaum chose to
work with, and eventually run SRMC, met this high standard. Buel’s
expertise in senior security management in retail and banking environments
on both a local and national scope and Parris’ professional
security experience, including physical and technological assessment,
system design and planning, made them the right team to lead the
firm. Even today, Boxerbaum’s security consultant legacy endures by
continuing to provide high-end security assessments, planning, design,
support and training services.
There’s a lot to be said about being a trusted advisor.
“Our process includes the needs of the customer, or end user, then
adding in our own processes,” Parris said. “We also take into account
environmental factors, such as asset and risk assessment, emergency
response and recovery dynamics.”
SRMC considers the architecture and facilities that are in question
for either an upgrade or a completely new security system. Of course,
the existing IP infrastructure, as well as technology needs assessment.
Parris said that customer needs will likely include regulatory compliance,
such as those in the healthcare industry, and other regulated
industries. He also said vision and values of the installation are critical,
as well as collaboration with the IT team.
“It is our goal to identify our client’s organizational risks, vulnerabilities,
and engage the stakeholder and community for best results,”
Parris said. “We have to understand any and all integrations issues
as we perform a site assessment, and we always implement industry
One of the time honored traditions founded by Boxerbaum and
still carried out today by the SRMC team is to educate an architect
and engineer on security technology, interoperability and functionality
in an effort to build security in and not bolt it on. Parris said this
brings value to company clients, and SRMC becomes a value-add to
the end user.
While most companies have their favorite, well-known projects;
the kind that bring fame and sometimes fortune, Buel said that working
with a family-owned business is often one of the most rewarding
because they are privately held companies, and SRMC is working
directly with the owner of the business. Aside from all of this,
SRMC has participated in plenty of pro bono work, where she or a
staff member has been able to solve a question in 90 minutes or less,
which can be more gratifying than taking a consulting fee. SRMC will
take on any project that is within the scope of the services offered.
These services come in the form of the SRMC staff. It is a stellar
lineup of consultants: Paul Denton, Marilyn Hollier, Rose Miller,
Paul Redmond, Rick Amweg, James Clark, Charles Smith, John
Kleberg and Patrick Maughan. Laura Schween is the staff business
development specialist, and holding it all together inside the Columbus
office is Gen Lanphere. Many of the staff members have
specialty expertise. However, Buel said the SRMC staff has been exposed
to so many other verticals over the years; they have become
experts in many diverse markets.
“It has been and is a great career for all of us,” Buel said. “In our
line of work we get to meet new people, and help them. We become
their trusted security advisor.”
This article originally appeared in the November 2017 issue of Security Today.