Picture Yourself Selling ID Badging
Today’s technology cards allow integration of multiple functions into a single card. Personalizing that card with a photo increases security through visual identification. Security may be further enhanced through the addition of visual security solutions such as holographic foil stamps and holographic overlaminates.
Card printers and integrated printer/encoders are smaller and more affordable than ever. Further, systems are virtually plug-and-play, utilizing standard connectivity such as USB and Ethernet, so installation is a snap.
ID software has become equally advanced and affordable. Evaluate the available programs to determine which ones employ the most intuitive interfaces, to assure you can meet customer expectations for ease-of-use and reduce the need for training. Also, make available a full spectrum of software options – from basic to sophisticated – to match customer needs for database size, multiple location issuance, digital encoding, etc.
In the past, many small to midsized organizations may have gone outside to a service bureau for card issuance. However, card ID system affordability and ease of use are empowering organizations to manage their own card systems more effectively.
“We may act as service bureau for a customer who is launching a new program and needs to issue a large number of cards up front, but the long-term goal is to evolve the customer toward self-sufficiency. It just makes more sense for us and for them,” Rohleder says.
Sell Clients on Added Features
Most integrators will find the barriers to entry into the photo ID arena are relatively small. Current customers and prospects will offer plenty of opportunities. If your customer has a physical security system in place, they are likely already using cards. Integrators simply need to convert customers to the added security and efficiency that a comprehensive card identity system offers.
Assessing customer needs for a card identity system will follow a line of inquiry that is probably very similar to the assessment integrators currently follow for broader security solutions (see sidebar). Your manufacturer and distributor representatives can offer turnkey card identity system solutions, and are your best resource for guidance, training and sales support.
Most manufacturers of card printer/encoders back their confidence in the reliability of their hardware with warranties of two years or more. So don’t expect adding card identity systems to place significant additional demands on your service team.
Finally, prepare to train at least one staff member as your dedicated expert on card identity systems, including an understanding of effective graphic design for ID cards. “Don’t overlook the importance of card design and production quality,” says Heimer. “Each employee has to carry that badge around all day long. It is important that the card delivers a positive representation of both the employee and the organization.”
If you are looking for additi
onal revenue opportunities, now is the time to add card identity systems to your customer solutions. Most integrators will find it fits seamlessly into their current mix of security solutions, adding not only project revenue, but the potential for high-margin recurring revenue along with stronger, more effective customer relationships.
Apryl Erickson is Director of North American Sales, Secure Issuance, for Fargo products at HID Global. She can be contacted at (952) 941-9470 or [email protected]
13 Steps to Zero In on a Card ID Solution
There are about a dozen questions for security contractors to pose when fitting a customer with a card identity solution. This assessment will help match the right printer, software and card technology to each customer’s specific requirements.
- How large is your organization (e.g. number of employees, number of students, etc.)?
- How many facilities are involved?
- How often do you use onsite contract or temporary employees?
- How often do visitors move through your facilities?
- How many shifts do you run?
- Do you currently issue digitally produced ID cards?
- If you issue ID cards, how do you protect them from being forged?
- If you issue ID cards, how do you protect your card identity system from use by unauthorized personnel?
- How do you currently control access to entrances and restricted areas?
- How would the loss of intellectual property or data assets affect your organization?
- What measures do you use to protect intellectual property and data assets?
- How many functions do you currently (or plan to) integrate into your card identity program? (e.g. access control, time and attendance, meal plan/food service, vending machines, credit/debit applications, parking, etc.)
- How important is consistent branding/logo usage to your organization?
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