Monitoring Center of the Year
Securitas Electronic Security places an emphasis on both employee engagement and customer engagement to keeps its employees safe and happy, while remaining vigilant and helpful in protecting its clients and their property.
For Securitas Electronic Security (SES), the 2020 Monitoring Center of the Year Award is a special reminder to staff, particularly to operators in the company’s four monitoring locations across the U.S. and Mexico, that the work they do on a daily basis has value to so many people and organizations.
“This award is great timing for us,” says Tony Byerly, president and CEO at SES. “It’s a great reflection of everyone on the team and the monitoring center and the work they do. We are really providing critical business services throughout this pandemic at all our monitoring centers, and to receive this recognition is an extra feather in all of our employees’ caps.”
Though SES is a hybrid security provider of integration and monitoring services spanning a wide range of customer bases, at the core of the company remains its monitoring business, dating back to the 1980s when it was Diebold Electronic Security.
“Monitoring is at the heart of our business and providing advanced monitoring solutions has been core to our strategy since the inception of our first monitoring center in 1985,” Byerly says. “Our day-to-day mission in the monitoring centers is ensuring we provide our clients that service of protecting their people and property.”
SES’ reaction to the coronavirus pandemic demonstrates the company’s focus on protecting its clients and their property, along with its equally strong focus on its own employees. The monitoring centers at SES activated the company’s Pandemic Response Plan in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Operations have continued without skipping a beat, ensuring remote work capabilities, social distancing and separate equipment amongst operators. “Our Pandemic Response Task Force team continues to meet and we continue to gain feedback from team members to ensure that our monitoring centers feel like a safe place to come in to,” says Damon Kanzler, senior vice president centralized services and business operations for SES.
Monitoring Center of the Year Finalists
AvantGuard Monitoring Centers, Ogden, Utah, achieved Five Diamond status in 2019. The company is also FM Global and UL listed. Being near a university, the monitoring center relies on a large part-time workforce and gives employees flexibility in their schedules as well as tuition reimbursement. The company’s key metric is median response time, which tells managers how quickly operators are responding to high-priority alarms. “While most companies are worried about the ‘average’ response time, our median response time helps us to improve our speed even more,” the company writes. AvantGuard also places an emphasis on false alarm reduction and preserving relationships with authorities as charter members of ASAP to PSAP. The company has implemented other false alarm reduction technologies and procedures as well, such as AG Chat and delays on certain signals, along with monthly meetings to discuss false alarm reduction.
Rapid Response Monitoring Services Inc., which earned the title of Central Station of the Year in the 2016 Excellence Awards, is always reengineering its two monitoring centers to ensure the best performance possible. The company’s Syracuse, N.Y. headquarters has been expanded and is in the process of an ongoing remodel. The company’s redundant California facility was recently expanded to accommodate new social distancing requirements. The company also places an emphasis on investing in employees’ physical and emotional well‐being. The company provides employees with free gym memberships to local facilities in surrounding communities and also created the Fit‐for‐Work initiative, where an on‐staff physical therapist for each location provides proactive stretching and postural education as well as free occupational therapy for aches and pains that develop inside or even outside of work. This initiative has been continued through virtual appointments while social distancing has become a part of everyone’s daily lives.
This year’s TMA Monitoring Center of the Year recipient has a long history of engaging employees beyond just the coronavirus pandemic, however. Operator and staff engagement is one of the key ways that SES differentiates itself, resulting in improved employee retention and future leadership bench strength.
Associates participate in one-year formal programs, including the Associate Advisory Councils and the Leadership Development Program. The Advisory Councils provide a forum for leadership to receive valuable feedback to make strategic business decisions with the consideration of many viewpoints regarding monitoring, installation, service and back-office processes. Advisory Councils work together to identify and solve complex business concerns through recommendations and collaboration.
The one-year Leadership Development Program is an additional forum for engagement that identifies high-potential associates and enables key communication and mentorship from SES executives to jump-start their professional development. SES associates come together for leadership development training, cross-functional experiences, management exposure and projects. The company prefers to promote from within and many leaders within SES were once monitoring center associates.