The terms “security integrator” and “security company” are entirely different despite their similar names. An enterprise might hire a security company thinking it’s a security integrator, and then won’t get the service they expected. There are several critical differences between security companies and integrators which businesses need to evaluate before engaging the services of either.
How Security Integrators and Security Companies Differ
“Security company” is a catch-all phrase which can reference a wide range of firms. Those firms may specialize in access control, surveillance, critical communications or other areas. Alternately, “security integrator” references a firm which provides all-in-one solutions. Integrators use value engineering in the design process, focusing not on components but on function.
Here are four of the critical differences between security companies and integrators.
Sales focus vs. solution focus
Security companies are sales focused. Companies may give information on components with little regard for the client’s existing infrastructure, prioritizing quotes and not education.
Integrators focus on their clients. Instead of asking what components are required, an integrator will review the client’s goals. The proposal process is more about educating than selling.
Short term vs. scalability
Security companies take a “band-aid” approach, in that they create a short-term solution for a specific problem. The client is offered one solution to one problem. A company won’t review how a new access system will fit into the business’s long-term security goals.
An integrator focuses on not just how the upgrade will work tomorrow, but how it will work 3 to 5 years down the road. This approach allows businesses to add other components as their needs change. Integrators create dynamic models which leave room for updates in the future.
Small project vs. big picture
Security companies typically focus on components rather than solutions. While this approach can seem less costly up-front, but additional components and frequent upgrades can add up to 3-5 times the expected cost.
Integrators take the whole system into account. They create unique solutions which are both useful and cost-effective in the long-term. Integrators with a big picture focus continuously seek better ways to do things.
Segmented vs. integrated
Most security companies specialize in a particular area, like surveillance, access control or perimeter management. They won’t have well-rounded expertise in complete systems, so will be unable to provide a complete system that is interconnected and integrated.
Integrators are focused on security solutions. An integrator’s knowledge is well-rounded: they manage every moving piece, bringing multiple systems into cooperation to provide comprehensive protection.
Working With A Security Integrator Who Provides Value Engineering
From this breakdown, it is clear that security integrators offer the benefit of value engineering. Value engineering ties controlling cost directly to improving function. An integrator prioritizes clients goals, and then seeks out opportunities to enhance existing designs. Rather than pile more components on top to resolve a problem, value engineering looks at how the entire system can be optimized. Only then will they move on to suggesting additional components and upgrades.
Value engineering is something we offer at 3Sixty Integrated. When we review a new project, we go through the client’s old designs and specifications and find better solutions, along with the savings you can expect from implementing our solutions. This approach is unique to 3Sixty, which is why we’re able to offer the big picture focus of a security integrator while still providing long-term cost savings.
At 3Sixty Integrated, we offer unique, engineer-designed security solutions which allow your system to work as one comprehensive unit. Our designs are also fully scalable, so you can grow your security system with your business. To get more information on creating a better, more effective security system, call (210) 504-1731 or fill out our contact form.