As a property manager, you wear many hats. You’re the point of contact for any issues around the property from maintenance to tenants. You’re responsible for the overall look and feel of your property, too. With all of that on your plate, putting together an effective security plan can take away some of your stress, give you happier tenants, and increase the desirability (and rent) of your property.
Designing your security plan should involve a few pieces. You must consider questions like, “Do I need cameras?” or “Should I have a live security guard?” Many commercial property managers believe that fully automatic security systems do the job well enough. Hiring security people comes with a monthly bill and most property managers are under pressure to reduce costs as much as possible.
But it is often short-sighted to focus only on “cost.” Your budget is important but there are benefits to working with the right partner to bring on-site security to your commercial property. We’ve put together a short FAQ to answer some common questions.
Cameras can be a crucial part of any security plan covering commercial property. They are great for recording and reviewing once an incident happens. They are a deterrent to crime and vandalism by their presence. If you are watching them when something goes down, you can see it in real-time and respond.
The other side of the equation, though, is that cameras don’t work without power to the camera and recording device. If the power goes out, your camera security becomes non-existent. Also, cameras do not work for real-time monitoring unless you have a person watching the incoming video at all times. Cameras can not stop or de-escalate any situation. They are simply passive machines.
In reality, neither one nor the other is “better.” They are different and complementary. Each has its pros and cons, but when used together can be incredibly effective. On-site security personnel can react and adapt to any situation. The presence of on-site security also provides passive protection by discouraging criminals when they see a person on the premises.
If there is a medical issue or a confrontation between tenants, trained security professionals will know how to react and assist quickly. If a crime is detected in progress, they will be able to intervene and stop the illegal activity while also alerting the proper authorities. When you add cameras on top of this layer, your security becomes even tighter.
Picking up the pieces after something has gone down can have implications for the perceived safety and desirability of your property. Having the ability to actively intervene provides others with a positive perception. This becomes part of the equation for gaining a higher ROI from your property.
A quality security company will work with you to create a security plan. By contracting out your security duties, you gain a partner with specialized skills who will help you evaluate your commercial property and develop a plan based on their expertise. They will know the proper levels of staffing you will need and how to integrate them with any other security systems you are using.
Security companies can also provide an extra layer of liability protection. You may find additional protection from third-party claims for bodily injury, property damage, or personal injury that happens on the premises. This coverage will vary, but it’s worth asking about.
Another benefit comes into play if your commercial property is open to the public and serves customers or tenants. Most days, most people can go about their lives without too many problems. Every once in a while, an issue between people grows into a dispute that takes place in public. Professional security personnel are trained to be impartial and focus on de-escalation. They aren’t there to side with one party or the other. Once they have everyone calmed down, then it’s on to the appropriate people for resolution.
Three factors are important to consider when evaluating potential partners for the security of your commercial property. Each of these play an important role in how well services will be delivered.
Motivation: The best security professionals are proactive. They spend their time looking for developing situations so that they can intervene early and try to minimize escalation. This comes from motivation. Bored, checked-out security is not vigilant security. Look for companies with a reputation for on-site security that is on their feet, interact well with customers or tenants, and are obviously on the lookout for anything suspicious.
Expertise and Training: The security industry is regulated, and in Hawaii to be a licensed security professional, you have to be certified by the state. This is the basic training that everyone gets. Serious security companies will also require their people to take specialized training courses, often that they have developed themselves. Don’t take “licensed” to mean effective. Ask questions about the additional training and skills your potential partner gives to their people.
Keep it Local: When you hire a local security company for your commercial property, you are aligning yourself with people who are tapped into the pulse of the community. They will know what challenges and issues you are most likely to face and will have developed strategies for dealing with them. For example, it may be that vandalism is a larger problem than theft, and your security plan can be built to address that reality. Being local is like having a little bit of an inside scoop to help you stop security issues before they happen.
Commercial Property managers have a lot on their plate. The last thing they need is one more issue to take up their time. When you find the right security partner, you will find one less headache. Skimp on your security and you may find yourself dealing more and more with security issues.
With over 60 years of combined security experience, many commercial property interests have turned to KT Protection Services. We can help evaluate your property and help you develop a security plan that fits your needs and your budget. We live in the communities we work in and take pride in seeing other local businesses having success. Contact us today and let’s see what you need and how we can help.