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Small Business

Here’s a checklist of what to consider—hardware and software—for any IP-based solution.

I’ve talked before about the benefits of video surveillance, including enhanced physical security, protecting valuable assets, and improving productivity. As a small business, though, a video surveillance solution may not be on your short list. You may think your money is better spent on those things that will help grow your business and increase revenue.

The truth is, video surveillance can provide your company with a strategic advantage by delivering data on customer preferences and responses, for example. As well, IP-based video surveillance is a cost-effective solution, because you can integrate it into your existing network.

Recognizing the value of video surveillance for your small business is just the first (albeit very important) step. Finding the solution that best fits your company is a longer path, involving hardware, software, and other considerations.

Lights, cameras, action!

There are a host of camera models to choose from—all offering a variety of options. To ensure you select the right cameras for your company, you’ll need to evaluate the physical requirements of your video surveillance needs, such as:

Better software provides better data, faster responses

Cameras are only half of a video security solution—surveillance and management software is the other key component. The software not only helps ease camera installation and configuration, but also can include features that allow you to respond faster to security incidents, including:

Some video surveillance solutions offer more advanced features, such as business analytics, with optional software. For example, Cisco Video Monitoring System can track customer reactions to promotional signage and has the ability to link with point-of-sale (POS) systems.

In addition to the camera hardware and management software, there are some other factors to consider when selecting the right video surveillance solution for your business. For example, if you’re installing cameras in hard-to-reach locations that aren’t currently wired into your network, you’ll want a solution that can deliver video over a wireless network. You can also save on the cost of additional cabling and electricity with cameras that support Power over Ethernet (PoE) and use existing data lines to power the devices. And if you have other security systems installed, consider a video surveillance solution that can integrate with alarms and door sensors.

Finally, look for a solution that can grow with your business. Choosing an IP-network solution that can support multiple cameras and can expand with your video surveillance needs provides investment protection for the long term.

See how Skye Dental’s video surveillance solution meets the needs of this small two-person practice.

Does your small business use a video surveillance system? What features were important to you?

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