What Do Customers Want From Your Security Company?

Although there are many qualities security solutions providers should possess, it is essential that companies say what they mean and mean what they say.

Say what you mean and mean what you say. If you boil it all down, that is really at the heart of what almost anyone wants from a personal or business relationship, including your security customers. For some it may be implied, but I would also emphasize making sure you take action based on those words and sentiments. For lack of a less clichéd way to put it, talk the talk and walk the walk. Nowhere is that more critical than in security. Beyond that, of course, there are many other qualities a security solutions provider should possess, ranging from technical expertise to business professionalism to financial stability to adequate staffing.

It’s important for any enterprise, but for security in particular I believe it is a core imperative to have altruistic motives. Put people first, uphold a high level of ethics and morals, and strive to contribute to the betterment of society as a whole. Ken Moyes, CEO of EH Publishing, owner of Security Sales & Integration as well as several other technology-focused media concerns, recently shared his perspective on the formula for true business success and I think it dovetails nicely with this theme:

10 Ways End Users Say You Can Be a Hero

  1. Being able to solve problems
  2. Having attention to detail
  3. The ability to offer a complete solution
  4. Showing engagement and communication throughout a project
  5. Providing remediation the first time
  6. Taking time to understand our unique business needs
  7. Does not represent a specific brand and works on our behalf
  8. Having commitment and heart
  9. By listening and partnering with us
  10. Making me feel like I am their only customer

“When people say they are going to start a business, they usually say the reason is ‘I am going to make a lot of money being my own boss and owning my own ideas.’ That is all well and good, but most businesses fail in their first few years, like more than 80%! What happens? Many things, but I have often observed that the focus is wrong. If you first focus on profit, you increase your chances of failing.

“If you have a business or a profit center you are responsible for, the order of focus should be as follows. First, your team; they have to be led well, share the vision for the goals, know their role, and be paid appropriately. If that is accomplished, you move on to your vendors and suppliers; they must be informed of your goals and needs from them, provide services at an appropriate value, and be paid on a timely and consistent basis. If that is accomplished, you move on to you; pay yourself for what your time and the value you bring is worth. Finally, you get to profits, and you can use those profits to start the cycle over for expansion of your business. Most businesses fail because they focus on these things in the reverse order.”

In other words, it’s about having your priorities straight. It is amazing how if you do the right things for the right reasons, positive results typically ensue. It speaks very well to the integrity of our industry and its people that the majority of installing companies are aspiring to and measuring up to those lofty standards.

Proof can be found in the results of SSI‘s 10th Annual Commercial End-User Study, where only about one in 10 (11%) security directors and managers expressed any degree of dissatisfaction with their provider. That declined by 4 percentage points from a year ago. The top three virtues cited were being technically adept, yet able to communicate on basic levels; being highly experienced; and delivering outstanding customer service. Naturally, there is always room for further improvement and that is detailed in the data as well.

One of the most telling questions of the survey is the open-ended one in which end users are asked, “What specifically makes a commercial systems integrator a hero in your eyes?” In addition to those already mentioned, end users cited attributes from IT adeptness to being a knowledge resource to meeting deadlines to anticipating needs. See how your organization stacks up to the list below of 10 other desirable factors. Then there is the one respondent who submitted a quip that some security integrators may lament has more than a grain of truth to it: “Can do the impossible, instantly, for no cost.”


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About the Author


Scott Goldfine is the marketing director for Elite Interactive Solutions. He is the former editor-in-chief and associate publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He can be reached at [email protected].

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