Whither Physical Security?
A Typical Scenario
The chief security officer or manager of a large organization has to manage security guards in 10 different branches in various locations. He has 10 security officers reporting to him, who in turn handle 20 guards in each location. The security guards in each location are stationed in different areas of their designated premises.
User friendly, reliable, and cost-effective
Manual, Administrative Tasks - A Priority?
The main purpose of having security guards is, of course, to ensure better physical security around any business, industrial, or organizational premises. But in the process of ensuring this, security guards and their managers end up spending a lot of their time in performing mundane day-to-day tasks. These are mostly manual activities that can and should be done away with - using smart technological solutions.
The security officers have to prepare daily and weekly schedules and reports. They have to maintain attendance records of the security guards and ensure that they are reporting on time, or even actually attending to their scheduled duty without any proxy.
How are the guards monitored? This is a question that needs to be asked by everyone genuinely concerned about physical security.
The security guards have their own issues. They have to make patrol rounds, check if everything is in order. If they miss anything critical, they are held responsible.
From the management perspective, unaccountability is a major issue. In reality, this problem cannot be dealt with without the appropriate technological solutions.
Another serious issue in large factories and manufacturing plants, is the safety of the guards themselves. How does the management track each member of the security team and ensure they are safe?
Is Physical Security Even A Goal?
As administrative and managerial tasks take up most of the time and resources, security ceases to be of primary concern on the ground. Adding more guards to the existing team does not solve the issue of securing the office or factory buildings and assets in and around the premises.
While physical security at the premises is the main goal for having security teams and guards, in practice, managing the teams, many a times across locations, becomes the main issue. Administrative tasks take up the team's time and effort. This eventually does not lead to anything of significance as far as security is concerned.
Unless there is a thorough process of properly monitoring security guards and their activities, the security manager is left struggling with manual admin tasks, team inefficiency, unaccountability and, more importantly, serious risks of oversight at all levels.
Why Change Is Tough?
a) Because no one is interested.
And even when there is interest, inertia gets to the team.
This happens mostly when the top management is okay with the status quo. Physical security is not a priority when the management is okay with scanning security reports collected and prepared manually, with error-filled data that have no further use whatsoever.
While this is the usual case in a majority of the organizations, we believe that some are beginning to look out for solutions to make positive changes in the way they operate. Who are they? Our usual suspects - these are people who are uncomfortable with inefficiency and outdated modes of working, who care about security.
b) When security managers don’t push for efficiency.
Most of the time, security managers are busy dealing with the day-to-day chaos of their work, the mismanagement of their own teams. They do not have the interest nor the time to even think of or look around for creative solutions that might exist, or the market might offer.
c) Because security officers have to make the best of whatever archaic tools are available with them to get their day’s work done. Or leave their team of security guards to their own devices.
Result: Blame game, power play, corrupt practices, avoidable accidents, and ultimately financial loss.
Basically, things don’t change until physical security becomes a real priority.
What Will Change How A Security Team Is Managed?
Technological solutions and their adoption.
Besides intent, of course.
There are a gamut of solutions available in the market today to drive any process or operation towards efficiency, including security guard patrol tracking. Most of them are simple to use. They do not need massive budgetary allocations. On the contrary, most solutions are cloud-based that are also subscription based - user-friendly even cost wise.
VersionX solutions have depth and broad capabilities, and are customizable to boot because they have been built ground up, to resolve practical issues from the user's perspective.
A guard patrol system is one such solution that immediately automates the processes that the entire security team struggles with on a daily basis.
The guard patrol system helps security officers and managers monitor guards and track their activities in real-time. The system integrates and makes guard scheduling, attendance keeping, and even their payments an automated process. In other words, the mundane day-to-day processes require no manual efforts.
Security guards can be held accountable for any irregularities in their attendance or their duties. The system helps track every small detail that the team wants to. Reports get generated whenever it is required without any manual input. This automatically raises the efficiency and accountability of the entire team.
A security guard tracking and monitoring system also helps ensure the safety of the security guards themselves. This is of critical concern in industrial setup and complexes where guards are not enough to ensure premises security. The management also needs to ensure the safety of their guards. In these complexes, concerns may range from trespassing to theft and offences resulting in recurrent and even severe damages and accidents.
The guard patrol system has several features to help the authorities stay alert. For example, the system has the capability to send instant alerts to the authorities whenever it detects any unusual activity on the ground.
How Do We Do It?
VersionX is a technology company that develops solutions for real-world business problems. The team has interacted with countless organisations to better understand the actual problems that security managers face on a day-to-day basis. Its guard tracking and patrol system is based on technologies that can be used effectively to solve the practical problems on ground.
VersionX’s guard patrol system uses the latest mobile app and cloud technologies. It also uses tracking systems like QR code and GPS and integrates well with all types of access control systems. We fully understand the advantages and disadvantages of each type and, therefore, make use of the appropriate kind of technology where necessary.
The primary goal of the VersionX guard tour system is to completely eliminate manual tasks and make the process of security team management and tracking completely automated. The system is useful for security teams and businesses that care about efficiency and the security of their people and premises.