Integration and Intelligence Issues: HOW ONE INTEGRATOR HANDLES GLOBAL ACCOUNTS
Systems integrator Deterrent Technologies does a large volume of business out of two offices in Ocean, N.J. and New York, N.Y. About 70 percent of the company’s work involves integrating separate systems, such as access control, intrusion alarm and video surveillance, so that they function as a single seamless system. Deterrent Technologies’ president, David Hersh, and executive vice president, Steve Ludeking, spoke with SDM about their company’s recipe for success.
SDM: Who are your typical customers and what kind of integrated system are they looking for?
Hersh: We’ve made tremendous inroads into what we call global accounts. Not only are they multi-site, multi-state, but multi-country as well.
SDM: What unique needs do your global accounts have?
Hersh: It’s a matter of standardization â€” getting multiple systems that may have been acquired over a long period of time into a game plan that brings the systems to a standard that’s more cost effective and easy to operate. A big advantage has been that we represent various product lines so we’re able to work on a multitude of different systems.
We examine the embedded base, take a look at all the sites and come up with a course of action that may take a couple of years.
We’re also doing something unique in relation to global accounts. We’re able to take on a global position without having offices in the area. Over the past 12 years we’ve developed an international dealer base and we work with our partners globally to meet the needs of our customers.
Ludeking: We’ve also made inroads into the condo, high-rise and multi-unit residential market. These applications traditionally integrate parking control and have been very aggressive in putting video camera surveillance systems throughout the facility – outdoors, at all the perimeters and on the parking levels themselves.
Many of these installations incorporate IP cameras, which saves installation costs. Instead of using traditional cable, we’ve designed the system to work with the existing backbone of the communication network. Many of these residences are smart units that are outfitted with computer jacks and networking, so it’s pretty easy to piggyback onto the backbone they have in place.
SDM: David mentioned partnerships. How do you find good partners?
Hersh: We’re celebrating our 25th anniversary as an integrator. Over this period, several accounts from the early days have taken us along and allowed us to grow with them. We never had a desire to open offices in every state. Our goal was to make a win/win for Deterrent and our local partner. We go through an in-depth screening process to select [local dealers].
We have a way of splitting the revenue so it’s their customer as well as ours. On maintenance service contracts, the lion’s share of the recurring revenue goes to the local partner. But we have one point of engineering and quality control. All the service calls come through our command center.
SDM: What are your main sources of new growth?
Hersh: We have new products to enhance security and eliminate guard hours by eliminating processes that traditionally were done by security staff. For example, pan-tilt-zoom functionality is handled better software-wise using video analytics.
The biggest driver right now is Deterrent’s suite of services designed for multi-site international and national accounts. We perform a survey and look at the acceptable level of risk, which differs from company to company. We’re now processing access control and video badges.
SDM: How does your badging service work?
Ludeking: Some of our larger customers wanted us to program their access cards, make the video badges and distribute them globally. They wanted the employee to have that credential within three days of submitting an application. We made a plan and developed a process to get the picture and application electronically. We confirm the information is correct, we then program and manage their ID card database and ensure they have it within 72 hours.