Selecting and specifying video components can be challenging. But due to a close partnership with their preferred camera vendor, Stone Security of Salt Lake City feels like they have an edge.
Stone Security’s clients’ video systems can go from five cameras up to the thousands, but a typical system is comprised of 15 to 20 cameras. CEO Brent Edmonds credits the free online business tools offered by Axis Communications with helping Stone Security grow their business.
Stone Security also has a strong background in IT, explains Dave Maynes, inside sales director, so when it came to selecting a camera vendor partner, Axis was a natural choice. “Axis was at the forefront of network-based video security and we really liked their products, so we became partners.”
Maynes and Lead Estimator Patrick Kilbourn use the Axis tools on a daily basis. On average, Maynes and Kilbourn prepare about 30 quotes every day, which they said would not be possible without using the free online tools from Axis. “You get jobs quoted accurately from the get-go, which is a great benefit,” Kilbourn said.
Maynes added that Axis tools speed up the quotation process. “It can be incredibly difficult to find the right parts and the right cameras. With Axis tools, we’re literally saving days. Finding the right part only takes minutes, sometimes seconds. We get the majority of our quotes out the same day, which is a great reason why Stone Security is so successful.”
While it can be difficult to measure, Edmunds agrees there has been a positive impact. “We are able to generate more accurate quotes, more quickly. So instead of having a $15 million sales year maybe we have a $16 million year because quotes were sent out more quickly and accurately and business got done. I believe those tools are helping us to be quicker and more efficient, increasing revenue and profitability.”
One of the online tools they use most is the product selector. “Axis has made it very simple to compare and select products,” Edmonds added. “Sometimes there are lots of different parts and pieces involved, different mounts or factors that go into choosing which camera is best for which situation, so this has made it simple to compare lots of products in their portfolio ....”
Being able to choose between many different product characteristics and functionalities, including resolution, IR and audio, is something Maynes and Kilbourn find makes the product selector so useful.
As customer IT departments have gotten more involved in security projects, another very handy tool is the bandwidth calculator, Edmonds said. “Frequently a customer’s IT department realizes there is a security project going on and they start putting up stop signs.
“We can jump on the phone and say, ‘I imagine you want to know the bandwidth and the storage requirements,’ and we are able to provide within minutes some intelligent information and speak their language. Those stop signs come down and the project moves forward. We are able to look and sound more professional because of those tools Axis has provided for us.”
“We are big fans of what Axis does,” he said. “They provide a great product both in the cameras they make as well as the way they support the channel in the tools they have given us. They are doing it right and we really appreciate that partnership.”