Security Monitoring

Security time & attendance monitoring is a subject that shouldn’t really be necessary to cover.  After all, if a security company has been contracted to supply security services to a client then, in theory, those services should be provided in an effective manner.  And in most cases, they are.

But what about the exceptions?  Could the monitoring of security staff become the difference between keeping and losing a client?  Or could security monitoring become a key factor in winning new business?  Perhaps more important than anything else – what about the safety of security staff?

It’s worth looking at two very different scenarios …

Unmonitored security

This is typically when security staff are employed to patrol a location but there is no interaction with the member of staff during their patrol.

The security staff will typically go on their rounds and may be recording their observations in some way (for example, recording visits to locations within an electronic device).    If there has been a security problem then the staff member will have a process to follow but what if the problem is more serious?  For example, what if a client building had been broken into and the security staff had their safety compromised and no way to communicate that to the outside world?  

In a scenario where security movements are unmonitored in real time there are some potential dangers:

  • The safety of the staff member could be compromised;
  • The staff member may not be doing their job (e.g. sleeping on the job);
  • A security breach could take longer to fix due to the staff member having a certain level of  autonomy but not the ability to address the problem sufficiently without outside help.

Monitored security

This is typically when security staff are employed to patrol a location and are following a set pattern of movements, as determined by their employer.   This is the type of scenario where MoCo Touch would be used as a powerful tool in security monitoring.

The security staff will go on their rounds and will have a set series of tasks to undertake at certain times.   As each task is completed, the computer systems of their employer (and optionally, the end client) are automatically updated.   If at any stage the staff member didn’t complete a task (for example, they may be asleep or in danger) then the system would automatically be alerted, which allows the employer (and end client if required) to be quickly notified for action to then be taken.

For the security guard that is monitored, such systems ensure that they keep to their schedule.   This means that:

  • The client can be reassured that the patrolling is being fully undertaken (and they can see records, updated live and historical, showing the patrol movements and actions);
  • The employer is demonstrating concern for the safety of their staff.  If their staff member didn’t follow a task then quick action would be essential if the staff member was in personal danger;
  • If a security guard wasn’t doing their job properly then the employer has documented evidence that can be used for disciplinary action if required.

Client Expectations

Clients, in any industry, expect a high level of service from suppliers.  If a client has a facility that needs patrolling and the consequences of security weaknesses could have significantly negative knock-on effects, then the client is going to choose their solution provider carefully.

Security companies that are not ensuring that guards are doing exactly what they should be, or are using outdated equipment as part of the patrol process, are not providing the level of service that legilsation demands (see our downloads section for a copy of the Corporate Manslaughter Act 2007).  While it may be tempting for a security company to not have live security monitoring in place, it only takes one problem to then put that security contract at risk, as well as the safety of the staff member. 

Thinking from the perspective of the client company, if they need security patrols and their initial choice was a company that could demonstrate that their guards have set processes to follow and that security monitoring ensured that happened, then any other security companies without such a solution wouldn’t stand a chance of gaining the contract.  It would be a very brave individual within a client company who decided to select security on any other basis than how strong the solution was.

Big Brother

From the perspective of the security staff member, it may all seem a bit ‘Big Brother’ and they may feel as if they’re robots having to undertake certain tasks at certain times as part of the security monitoring (for advice and legislation on an employer's responsibilities in this regard see our downloads section).  But ultimately, those guards have a choice in the type of employment they take, and their employer also has a choice of who to employ.   If, for example, a security guard fell asleep during duty and so didn’t follow the processes, then would it really be unreasonable for the system to alert their employer as to the danger to the client company?    If, as another example, a security guard fell ill while on duty and couldn’t communicate, wouldn’t it be an advantage (for the staff member and the client) for the break in security process to be alerted automatically?

From the perspective of the client company, the issue of ‘Big Brother’ is a positive one.  They want to feel that they’ve got instant, and historical, access to data related to the security of their facilities and anything that makes that possible is going to be a bonus.

In Conclusion

While cost is always a concern for both client companies and security providers, a security solution needs to be foolproof and it’s in the interests of both security company and client to have a strong system (such as MoCo Touch) in place to ensure the security monitoring is done in the most effective way possible.

How Much?

Near Field Communication

Buy Touch for as little as 65p per day, per device licence.  With unlimited end-user access, no setup charges and no maintenance charges... this is all inclusive.

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Case Study

Cobra Security kicks out the "Pipe" for Touch and saves 14 hours per week, or over £10k per annum, in driver, fuel and administration costs aloneLearn more