This issue features our 19th annual Top Systems Integrators Report, a ranking of the largest security integrators by their North American systems integration revenue. In addition to the reporting of revenue, profits, and other sales and operational data, these integrators have a great story to tell about how they are faring in today’s economic climate. Most importantly, they offer an insight into which market sectors are currently propelling the systems integration industry. This exclusive report begins on page 61.

The articles in this issue demonstrate that not only does the electronic security industry offer a high value proposition, but that new and improved technologies alone are never enough to strike success. They must fit into the overall picture of market need/acceptance the competitive environment, and — crucially — the business requirements of dealers and integrators.

For example, in the article “Integrating the Big 2,” author Hodgson quotes an integrator who describes the process of systems integration as “a constantly changing environment” because opportunities to start integration projects from scratch are few and far between. Describing a project, he said, “Access control was specified by one manufacturer. The video management system was a separate company, and the cameras were two other different companies. There were four manufacturers involved between access and video. It was very painful for us as the guy in the middle. Fortunately, it was a big enough job that we were able to get the manufacturers’ attention because the things they said would integrate when this began in 2012 didn’t necessarily work in 2014.” The story begins on page 85.

Another compelling article is “Next-Generation PERS,” on page 100. Author Heather Klotz-Young writes, “The PERS industry is experiencing an overhaul in technologies and form factors, and is even moving out of the home and into the workplace where commercial opportunities are growing. Corporations around the globe with ‘lone workers’ are learning about the protection that today’s new PERS and mobile PERS units provide, and the potential is huge.”

Another article you shouldn’t miss is, “The Next Big Thing in Compression.” Author Derek Rice describes the video compression formats that are used primarily today, with a look at what’s to come. “The next big thing on the resolution horizon — 4K — is also a major driver of the next big thing (or things) in compression. With resolution that is four times 1080p, file sizes of 4K format video are much, much larger than HD video.”

These articles are just the tip of the iceberg of information presented in this issue, and every issue of SDM, to help dealers and integrators achieve and maintain that high value proposition to their customers.


SDM Welcomes 2 New Editors

Meet Maya Dollarhide and Austin VanKirk, two new editors on SDM’s team! They were recently hired so that we can offer SDM’s readers more original and timely breaking news, as well as more staff-written articles and multimedia-content presentations.

Maya graduated from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism and previously worked as managing editor at BNP Media’s Custom Publishing Division. She also has worked as a freelance researcher, writer and editor.

Maya’s primary responsibilities at SDMare managing the news department, preparing content for SDM and Today’s Systems Integrator e-newsletters, as well as writing and editing lots of articles. She is based in upstate New York. Maya can be reached at

Austin’s primary responsibilities at SDMare managing the new products section, as well as editing technology announcements that pertain to partnerships, new product lines, distributor news and training programs. He is also involved with issuing breaking news alerts, the website —, magazine production, and trade show coverage.

 Austin graduated from Michigan State University, has previous experience as a writer and editor, and lives in the metro Detroit area.  Austin can be reached