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BUSINESS SECURITY
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It is natural for a small business owner to want to protect his or her physical assets. Today, surveillance systems offer far more advanced features than they did a decade ago. Business owners can choose from a variety of customizable options that make monitoring their place of business easier and more convenient than ever.

Benefits of security systems for small businesses

Most small business owners admit that they struggle to wear many hats and even be in multiple places at once. While it is impossible to be in two or more places simultaneously, a high-quality small business surveillance system can serve as a watchful eye and ongoing presence when the business owner is unavoidably away from the premises. A reliable surveillance system can be there when something goes wrong and answers are needed. Video footage could be a game changer if a business is sued in a slip and fall claim, if there is a major conflict between two employees, or even if a customer claims to have received incorrect change or improper service.

Other advantages to installing a small business surveillance system include:

  • being able to go on vacation without worry;
  • training and quality assurance;
  • having the ability to monitor other business locations;
  • documenting vendor deliveries with photo evidence.

Travel at ease

Many business owners with businesses in brick-and-mortar locations dread going on vacation, because, rightfully, they want to keep watch over their assets. Many surveillance systems are now equipped with smart phone-compatible features. Not only are some security systems able to send camera footage to the administrator’s phone, but the systems can even alert the business owner when certain incidents occur, prompting an immediate response – even from a beach 2,000 miles away.

Using security systems for training and quality assurance

In addition to discouraging experienced employees from abandoning the required procedure and protocol, surveillance systems can help business owners fine-tune operations and employee practices by observing employee behaviors and customer responses. Footage can be played back to train new employees and to help existing staff members improve their performance.

Monitoring multiple locations

Some business owners may be reluctant to open new locations due to fear of imposing even greater demands on their time and energy, as they’d need to monitor multiple locations. A reliable surveillance system can eliminate the need to visit each location daily. The ability to monitor multiple stores often empowers business owners to hire managers to take over some of their workload. In short, a surveillance system serves a back-up pair of eyes and ears as oversight to that store’s staff.

Verifying stock deliveries

In some cases, a business that regularly receives deliveries of merchandise from suppliers may have a discrepancy between the amount of product received and the amount ordered. If the supplier’s records do not reflect the discrepancy, the receiving business may be required to provide proof of its claims. A business that maintains surveillance of its delivery area and stockroom should have no trouble providing strong proof if footage of the delivery was record and saved.

Small business surveillance system features

Once a business owner has identified the purposes he or she would like a surveillance system to serve, the next step is deciding which features are necessities. Most businesses prefer an IP system over a traditional analog setup. Analog security systems predate current digital platforms. They utilize a more antiquated wiring scheme and produce grainy footage. IP systems are rather easy to use and install. They are mostly or, in some cases, fully wireless. Smartphone compatibility is a major advantage to choosing an IP surveillance system.

Choosing a camera

Deciding which camera to use depends heavily on the conditions in which the camera will be recording. Store owners who wish to record in outdoor conditions require a camera that is weatherproof. Dimly lighted settings call for a camera that is equipped to capture and reflect infrared waves. Large or wide spaces require a camera that has a greater area of visibility. Some cameras include sophisticated functionally like: analytics, smart infrared, and motion tracking.

Recording video

Capturing video is only one part of the equation when it comes to installing a complete surveillance system. The video must also be recorded. To achieve this objective, most systems include either a recording device or a cloud storage subscription. Cameras that have a higher resolution or that record continuously require a high-capacity recording device or cloud storage plan. Systems that are motion-activated and only record upon sensing motion may require less storage capacity.

No two small business’ needs are exactly alike. Therefore, business owners must consider their needs, desires, level of tech savviness and overall budget when wading through the various options in surveillance equipment and systems. Regardless, the decision to install video surveillance is a good one for most businesses, as doing so provides an additional level of security and the ability to have unbiased, trustworthy eyes and ears at the business around the clock.

In the end, most entrepreneurs find that the investment in surveillance equipment is well worth the expense. The added peace of mind and the time saved by having visual access to the business available at the touch of a button prove invaluable.