HID, a trusted identity and physical security solutions provider, recently unveiled the results of its first “State of the Security Industry Report,” which collected responses from 2,700 partners, end users and security and IT personnel representing more than 11 different industries. The results revealed some themes of interest for security integrators trying to keep up with the needs of customers today and in the future.

Here are the five biggest takeaways from the report.

1. Supply Chain issues persist, but are slowly improving. According to the report, 74 percent of respondents said they had been negatively impacted by supply chain issues in 2022, but they were split 50/50 on whether those issues would improve in 2023. Smaller organizations — those with fewer than 1,000 employees — were the most optimistic.  Not surprisingly, the most impacted were commercial real estate companies, with 78 percent citing supply chain as a main concern. 

A recent cover story in SDM Magazine found that security integrators have worked hard to find sometimes creative ways to alleviate the issue for their projects — ranging from finding new vendor and distributor sources to work with to building new storage facilities to store more inventory. But overall, they expressed some cautious optimism things would slowly improve. Much like a traffic jam that finally clears, the farther back in the queue the longer it will take to start moving again. Read more about the supply chain issue here.

2. Sustainability will be an increasingly important influence.  Nearly 90 percent of respondents to the survey said sustainability was important to extremely important to their customers, with 75 percent indicating it was of growing importance in purchasing decisions.  

To support this growing demand, security teams are leveraging the cloud and the Internet of Things, even more, to optimize processes and reduce resources. Additionally, new products and solutions are being strategically developed to address sensible energy usage, waste reduction and resource optimization. 

3. Hybrid work environments will push cloud-based access management further into the mainstream. A large majority of respondents, 81 percent, currently offer hybrid work models that incorporate some mix of in-office and remote options. But while 67 percent believe that multifactor authentication and password authentication are the key to adapting to hybrid and remote work and 48 percent point to the importance of mobile and digital IDs, almost half of organizations aren’t quite ready to implement a full IDaaS (identity as a service) strategy. Of those polled, government agencies were the most likely to utilize IDaaS in the near future, with 43 percent indicating that direction. The next most likely were financial services companies at 33 percent. 

The top five hybrid work enablers were multifactor or passwordless authentication; data strategy; digital mobile identities; a zero trust security approach; and contactless or touchless solutions.

4. Digital ID adoption is accelerating rapidly. Nearly half of security installers and integrators indicated that their customers currently use mobile IDs for identity verification. The growing popularity of digital wallets from major players such as Google, Apple and Amazon is a key driver of this trend, as evidenced by a recent announcement from Brivo on its expanded mobile credentials offering using Apple Wallet to house employee credentials. “We’re excited to announce the launch of this capability for our corporate customers to bring a new level of ease and convenience to their employee experience,” Steve Van Till, founder and CEO of Brivo said in a press release. “With employee badges in Apple Wallet, companies can now provide a secure, fluid experience for employees to access their spaces with just a tap of their iPhone or Apple Watch.” 

Expanded capabilities such as this allow smartphone users, for example, to add keys, IDs and digital documents directly in the wallet app. Read more about the Brivo announcement here. 

Commercial real estate companies (40 percent) are outpacing other verticals as large commercial real estate firms are leveraging mobile access as part of their larger tenant experience apps, according to the HID survey. 

5.  Contactless biometrics has reached an impressive momentum. Of those surveyed nearly 60 percent are currently using, plan to implement or at least test biometric technologies in the near future, with 26 percent indicating they are currently using biometrics. Another 33 percent  plan to introduce biometrics in the next one to five years. 

A recent article in SDM magazine echoed this trend, finding that adoption of biometrics in access control and identification is at a major turning point right now, but it will be important for security dealers and integrators to help continue to shape that narrative, according to Lee Odess, CEO of Access Control Executive Brief. “I’d say that it is dystopia right now because there are no good stories in the mainstream media,” he said in the article. “You’ve got to have case studies and storytelling opportunities to tell your end user customer [about biometrics].” Read the full article here.

None of these trends will come as a surprise to anyone closely following security trends,. But by better understanding them, security dealers and integrators can adapt and prepare to deliver the solutions customers will want going forward. 

To download HID’s complete survey, go here.