Turner recalls implementing video analytics for a large global bank to not only manage queues and gauge customer service, but also to “achieve tangible cost savings by reducing tellers at low throughput times and adding them at peak times. We were able to measure this over daily, weekly and longer time periods to establish meaningful trends.” Solutions like this can be adapted for any number of similar, high-traffic scenarios.
Justin Feit email@example.com is assistant editor of BUILDINGS.
The Non-Proprietary Approach to Security
In all facets of facility management, there is a distinct trend of products using non-proprietary communication systems. With protocols like BACnet allowing communication between products of different brands, FMs can select the best products for their facility without worrying about compatibility issues.
“We are taking on an integration platform with the advent of the Power over Ethernet standards that are coming out,” says Sean Ahrens, Global Practice Leader of Security Consulting and Design at JENSEN HUGHES in Chicago. “This affords us to transmit both signal and power to equipment such as lighting or diffusers. When we are combining that signal and that data, we can do a lot more that we couldn’t previously.”
In the security industry, the Open Network Video Interface Forum (ONVIF) emerged to promote open interfaces for interoperability. In their mission, they outline three major goals:
■ Standardization of communication between IP-based physical security products
■ Interoperability regardless of brand
■ Openness to all companies and organizations.
Because of the inherent competition of this non-proprietary approach, security products are likely to be more future-proof than in the past. Brent Edmunds, President and Co-Founder of Stone Security in Salt Lake City, notes that the future-proofing involved in security brings “more equity in the system because if you’re using non-proprietary hardware and software, the manufacturers are required to keep you happy, otherwise you could switch. So they update, edit and produce many advancements to make their system better, and that allows your system to improve over the years.”
Preventing Injury Liability in the Winter
During the winter, building operators need to take extra precautions to ensure that outdoor paths and parking lots are clear of snow and ice to make sure people do not fall and injure themselves. Reducing liability by mitigating snow and ice buildup is critical during these months.
Ray Bernard, President and Principal Consultant at Ray Bernard Consulting Services in Lake Forest, CA, notes one facility that needed to stay ahead of snow removal in the winter: “They wanted to know how early to get out there. What are the parking patterns, and can they go in and clear off one section of the lot where more people are parking early?” So they used video surveillance to analyze parking habits and react quickly to remove the snow.
Located in the Rocky Mountains, Stone Security often works with facilities that receive plenty of snowfall and ice accumulation. Using video surveillance systems, those with outdoor facilities and sidewalks immediately assess winter walking conditions between buildings, parking lots and walkways.
With cameras established in the right areas, users can immediately identify sidewalks, stairs and other locations that can be dangerous when covered in ice and take action promptly to prevent the risk of injury. Any way a user can find multiple uses for a single component of a security system will make the investment more worthwhile.