Physical security organizations are traditionally kept in a silo under the “operations” umbrella. This is unfortunate. In today’s environment, security can enable other areas of the business to perform better. It’s no longer a budget cost center − it’s a competitive advantage.
When equipped with artificial intelligence (AI)-enabled weapons and threat detection technology, the security function can do more than just accurately screen people for concealed weapons and maintain order in the business. Security can also increase patron entry speed, monitor concession lines for overcrowding, detect fights in a crowd, and optimize layouts according to customer traffic flows to give guests a more enjoyable experience.
Having strong security technology in place is a win for all parts of the business. While the business and security sides of a company traditionally butt heads regarding efficiency and safety tradeoffs, using technology like unobtrusive patron scanning for weapons, and AI-enabled video systems can reconcile these differences by improving the customer experience. An integrated security solution can benefit the entire business in a number of ways:
- Security: Modern security technology allows businesses to focus guards’ time on responding to specific and actual concerns rather than unnecessarily screening all patrons causing unwelcome delays. It can accurately detect hidden weapons in coat pockets and stashed in backpacks, without the delays and inconvenience of walk-through metal detectors. Fewer guards are required at entrances, meaning businesses can recoup costs or optimize operations elsewhere. AI-enabled cameras spread throughout the facility can also detect incidents in crowds such as fights, allowing security personnel to quickly respond and de-escalate the situation. Finally, when AI-enabled video is paired with non-intrusive gateway scanning, businesses can actively secure the entire customer experience – in the parking lot, at the entryway, and inside.
- Marketing: Implementing modern non-obtrusive security technology can be a promotional tool, creating an attractive draw for customers, especially in the time of re-opening, post-COVID restrictions. No lines equals happy patrons. Investment in customer safety is a further brand strengthener.
- Sales: If people aren’t wasting their time waiting in lines, then they have more time to make purchases inside, driving up revenue. Additionally, because AI-enabled cameras can detect customer activity within the business, they can give early warnings when lines start to form at concession stands or checkout counters, allowing managers to deploy more staff to the busy areas or direct customers to alternate locations.
- Operations/Maintenance: AI-enabled video can detect things like spills, clutter, etc. that need to be addressed to ensure a brand-aligned customer experience. It also can monitor customer traffic flow and bottlenecks, to inform adjusting the layout of facilities.
- Finance/Legal Counsel: Obviously, reducing costs is always popular in finance! Modern security technology can inform the more efficient use of guards and other personnel. It also can reduce legal risk by providing evidence against personal injury and other claims.
- Human Resources: Lastly, the technology can benefit HR by analyzing if staff is properly following policies and protocols, or if facilities are over or understaffed. It’s also a competitive brand advantage to prospective employees – that the company is actively taking steps to protect their staff as well as patrons.
Security isn’t just a “cost of doing business.” With the right technology, it can optimize and enhance the entire business flow – and that means more revenue, more profit, less risk, and happier customers and staff.