The October issue of SSI features a guide to selecting a third-party central monitoring station in which nine providers are spotlighted. I conducted extensive interviews with executives from all of them, most of which could not be shoehorned into the print publication. In this exclusive bonus blog, Affiliated Monitoring Vice President Daniel Oppenheim discusses training, value-adds and increasing RMR.
Please summarize how you train your company’s staff to deliver the latest technology as well as customer care. Has this process become more or less difficult? What do you look for in recruiting personnel?
Daniel Oppenheim: We have a rigorous multifactorial testing regime that helps us identify the best talent. That combined with a holistic and ongoing award-winning training program has allowed us to have one of the lowest attrition rates in the industry.
Why is a security dealer better off contracting with a third-party monitoring provider than bringing monitoring in-house?
Oppenheim: RealStream™ from Affiliated is our real-time alarm testing app. It increases a tech’s productivity by letting anyone view test signals instantly on their mobile device as they’re received by our monitoring center. A tech can quickly get the information they need in the field without having to make a single phone call. It has revolutionized fire alarm tests and inspections as well as any burg service call. We have seen a 230% increase in RealStream’s use in the last six months.
What are some of the value-adds you offer security dealers that do business with your company?
Oppenheim: Our in-house team of application developers allows Affiliated to continuously roll out enhancements to our apps and portal. We’ve made 350 changes to the dealer portal in 2013 alone.
In what ways do you help contracted security dealers increase their recurring monthly revenue?
Oppenheim: Affiliated has a full hosted and managed access control package for dealers to drive additional meaningful RMR from their customers. We allow dealers to offer access at a lower install price point while offering a complete managed access offering that is unique. Affiliated fulfills all card adds/deletes and data changes on behalf of the dealer. Also, video services: Affiliated can integrate video into any security installation. Affiliated supports a broad array of DVRs. Next, there’s PERS: In the near future, the senior population will nearly double to over 70 million people with 96% of those wanting to remain in their own homes. Affiliated’s low-priced PERS equipment and monitoring package allows dealers to tap into the fantastic earning potential of the growing senior market.
Describe your company’s approach to newer technologies/service offerings such as PERS, video monitoring, GPS, energy management, managed access control, etc.
Oppenheim: We see real-time video verification as a massive opportunity for increasing commercial RMR while also having the benefit of decreasing false alarms. It’s the killer app of 2014.