|The session, “State of the Industry, State of the Integrator,” was standing room only at 2014 PSA-TEC. Investing in IT capabilities, sales staff, and the customer experience were key messages from the integrators. Photo by SDM Staff|
A key message from PSA Security Network, Westminster, Colo., at 2014 PSA-TEC, held May 5-9 at the Westin resort hotel in Westminster, was the growth and opportunity provided by its new National Deployment Program. The organization has done a lot of work behind the scenes to generate a program it believes will benefit integrators of all sizes. Click here to watch SDM’s exclusive interview at PSA-TEC with Bill Bozeman, president and chief executive officer of PSA Security Network by Heather Klotz-Young, SDM Senior Editor.
“National Deployment is different from the national accounts program. What we’re doing is providing the integrators the opportunity to do regional and national accounts that they might not have coverage for in their own particular office,” Bozeman described to SDM.
Earlier this year, PSA Security Network announced the creation of the National Deployment Program to provide end-user customers and manufacturers with “a consistent, dependable, and certified national network of security integrators.” PSA-member integrators provide design, installation, and service of sophisticated integrated physical security systems. Initial coverage includes the United States and Canada.
Bozeman shared that PSA Security spent considerable time “setting up the structure of the program.” Security integrators participating in the program will be required to meet the standards and certifications established by the National Deployment Committee. In addition, integrators must qualify based on project-specific technical certifications, project-specific OSHA and HR requirements, Security Industry Association’s CSPM (Certified Security Project Management) and PSA Leadership training modules as they apply to ensure job performance.
“It is our job to make it easy for the integrator to get more business,” Bozeman said. “The challenge is servicing the large, middle, and smaller integrators. We think we’ve been able to develop a program that will offer all three a benefit,” he said.
PSA-TEC 2014 also focused on training and quality panel discussions, offering more than 200 hours of education and networking during the event, focusing on business optimization, physical security, IT, management, certifications and managed services — to name a few.
One key session was the “State of the Industry, State of the Integrator” panel discussion. Moderated by Sandy Jones of Sandra Jones and Company, it combined two panels. The first represented the integrator perspective (including Carey Boethel, CEO ofSecuradyne Systems, Carrollton, Texas;Mike Bradley, president, Safeguard Security, Scottsdale, Ariz.; Rob Simopoulos, president, Advance Technology, Scarborough, Maine; and Bill Bozeman, PSA Security Network); the second panel showcased the solutions providers’ outlook (Don Erickson, CEO, Security Industry Association, Silver Spring, Md.; Stuart Rawling, Open Network Video Interface Forum(ONVIF), San Ramon, Calif.; Dave Bunzel, Physical Security Interoperability Alliance(PSIA), Santa Clara, Calif.; and Will Schmidt, managing director, Capital Source’s security lending group, Los Angeles).
Investing in IT capabilities, sales staff and the customer experience were key messages from the integrators. Bradley shared that Safeguard Security invested almost half a million dollars into writing proprietary software and tripling its salesforce. The company also strategically hired an IT expert, vice president of technology, Scott Thompson.
Boethel emphasized that Securadyne Systems is well-adapted to IT requirements and the new IP landscape because it is new and was built to accommodate them from the beginning (the company even chose to hire personnel with no experience in security in order to infuse IT experience directly into the company). He said the company’s main challenge is actually handling its growth as a new company (it experienced 105 percent growth in 2013 alone) and creating a “consistent customer experience” through the chaos that rapid growth can bring.
Consistency of service is a major challenge for larger integrators, especially among multiple branches, agreed moderator Sandy Jones.
Simopouloshighly recommended investing in your sales staff and managed services. In fact, his company has found great success in recruiting new IT talent directly from local community colleges and universities. He challenged all of the integrators to take the time to go to local colleges and share the opportunities in physical security with students.
Other events at PSA-TEC included the Fan Fare Welcome Reception where attendees were encouraged to wear their favorite team’s colors for a night of friendly rivalry and prizes. On Tuesday afternoon, PSA-Security hosted its annual Vendor Awards luncheon, and in the evening attendees were able to visit Gold Sponsor’s Hospitality Suites in the Education Hall, enjoying food, entertainment (including pool and ping pong), networking, and a first-hand look at the companies’ new technologies. The Gold Sponsors were Altronix, AMAG Technology, Bosch, March Networks, OpenEye, and Pelco by Schneider Electric.
A full-day expo was held on Wednesday with almost 100 vendors and PSA Security partners. The expo closed with a cash bar and free popcorn from Vanderbilt Industries. That evening everyone gathered for the annual TEC Jam Session, which is a huge hit at the event every year, bringing out the entertainer in PSA owners and vendor partners. For a sample, click here.
From the training to the networking, the five-day event included something for everyone to help grow their business. Watch for next year’s dates for PSA-TEC to be announced on www.SDMmag.com.