Beyond the obvious alarm monitoring services such as intrusion, fire, and CO2, this blog aims to look at some of the other key services that alarm companies should consider offering their customers.
Here are the top 10 alarm monitoring services your company should offer:
1. Fire Alarm Sprinkler Supervision Monitoring
Going beyond just fire alarm monitoring, it is important to start with one that is sometimes overlooked. Sprinkler supervision monitoring provides peace of mind to customers as it minimizes the incidence of setting off the sprinkler due to a false alarm, which can cause serious damage, depending on the home or business and the time when the system is set off. It also guarantees that the sprinkler goes on when it is a true emergency, potentially saving a home or business even more damage from fire.
2. Video Verification
Probably the greatest advancement in fighting false alarms is the rise in video verification technology. With leaders like Honeywell teaming with video verification pros like I-View Now and acquiring companies like RSI Videofied, the industry has made a leap forward in this area of alarm verification. This is why it is vitally important that a security company offers and/or provides this service to their customers.
3. Process Monitoring
Probably the least utilized area of monitoring, yet one that offers a multitude of value-added and RMR opportunities for security dealers is process monitoring. Ideal for businesses and homes, process monitoring can be as simple as monitoring temperatures and humidity to monitoring for power failures and water levels or checking equipment such as sump pumps for proper operation. There are some pretty cool things that you can do here, so be sure to reach out to a full-service monitoring company that can handle these services.
4. Open/Close Monitoring
Although this service may seem unnecessary, there is some real inherent value here, especially for businesses or facilities that have different shifts of employees opening and closing a building or business. What is great about this service is the ability to get reports on open and close activity, as well as notifications about instances outside of the desired open and closing times that have been designated for a building.
5. Internet Monitoring
It is becoming more and more common for homeowners to cut their phone line and just have an Internet connection, which is why offering Internet Monitoring is a no-brainer. Today, alarms can be transmitted over a high-speed Internet connection, and an alarm company can offer backup monitoring using the Internet as a secondary path to a traditional phone line. And for those who are using the Internet, there is a built-in back-up for when the phone line, if it is still used, is out of service for some reason, such as downed lines or during a power failure.
6. Cellular Monitoring
Equally as important as Internet Monitoring, Cellular Monitoring can provide a great option for those who do not have a traditional phone line. For example, Cellular Monitoring is available through AlarmNet, Honeywell’s new backup/alternate transmission path system that is available in cellular and Internet versions.
7. Life Safety/PERS Monitoring
With more and more families taking care of their aging loves ones at home, there has been an increase in the number and types of personal emergency response systems (PERS) out on the market today. This will continue to be a growing area and one that should not be ignored by an alarm company as it offers some opportunities. With Baby Boomers, one of the largest generations since the millennials, entering into retirement age, the adoption of PERS and mobile PERS will continue, no doubt.
8. Backup Radio Monitored Alarm Systems
Even with all of the above-mentioned methods of communication—cellular, Internet and phone lines—it is important to offer an emergency backup option to customers, such as Backup Radio Monitored Alarm Systems. Be sure to work with a central station that can monitor an alarm system by radio, as this will be your customer’s vital backup when all else fails.
9. Testing Backup Communications
With all of this talk about the different lines of communication that are available today, including various ways to create backups and redundancies, let’s not overlook the need to test these backup communications on a regular basis. For critical infrastructure-type facilities and community support facilities such as hospitals and banks, the need for and frequency with which these tests need to be done is vitally important.
10. Account Status Reports
This may seem like an obvious service, even one that should be provided as an added value to customers, but it is key nonetheless, so make sure your monitoring company does this. And with so many customers looking to access reports online, this service should actually be something that an alarm company highlights as a key service offering. Your customers will like to hear about all of the Internet-friendly reports, even access to valuable data that can even be offered as a management service if your company offers that type of managed service offering. At the very least, it is a service that is great for customer service and providing that extra support function.
Picking a Partner
In closing, as a security company, make sure you are not only offering key monitoring services, but ones that differentiate you from your competitors, and help create a stickier customer that looks to you for the latest and greatest service. This is why it is important to work with a monitoring company that has experience working with both residential and commercial customers and has a proven track record in your area of business.
First and foremost, be sure to work with a company that is UL Listed, as this means the company meets minimum standards set by underwriters laboratory or UL. In addition, be sure the company is a member of The Monitoring Association, the leading monitoring association in the industry that provides guidance on standards, best practices and business ethics.