Jul 22 2021

How Businesses Can Expand the Value of Video Surveillance

In addition to security, video surveillance also offers the opportunity to enhance customer experiences and improve business operations.

Advanced video surveillance systems make it possible to reduce the risk and impact of incidents that occur in and around your business. Correctly placed, cloud-connected high-definition cameras can deter potential criminals, while video solutions as part of larger security frameworks provide 24/7 coverage of physical properties to provide peace of mind.

That’s just the beginning. Always-on video surveillance systems now generate a wealth of data, and put to good use, this data delivers substantive value for both business operations and the customer experience. Here’s what it looks like in practice.

Businesses Put Video Surveillance Data to Multiple Uses

Data is the new currency of effective customer service, corporate decision-making and long-term company success. The better businesses can collect and curate the vast amounts of data they generate each day, the better equipped they are to understand both short-term effects and long-term trends.

While many companies now have processes in place to leverage data from sources such as customer relationship management and enterprise resource planning solutions, video data is often underutilized. With an average day of surveillance clocking in at more than 500 petabytes of data, there’s massive potential to improve both business operations and the customer experience if businesses can align assets with evolving expectations.

“Modern physical security platforms can provide a wealth of data and information,” explains James Ensten, vice president of global channel sales at Rhombus Systems. “Some can even integrate with nonsecurity devices like building infrastructure, electrical power, visitor management systems and more. Retail shops can count new and repeat shoppers and track how many customers are in the checkout queue. Warehouses and manufacturers can track employees and material flows. Healthcare facilities can centralize operations for quicker response and better patient outcomes.”

In short, modern video surveillance systems don’t exist in isolation; they’re part of the larger Industrial Internet of Things that extends across both front-facing and back-end processes to provide real-time insight about everything from current production performance to energy use and warnings about potential failure points.

In practice, however, improving business operations requires more than physical devices and the digital data they create. Ensten points to the use of intuitive platforms that leverage web-based application program interfaces that allow companies to imagine and create data workflows that best align with expectations.

Here, speed and simplicity are key. “Whatever solution you choose, the platform interface should be intuitive and easy to use to avoid information overload,” says Ensten. “Users should be able to create customized alert policies in minutes. Surveillance cameras and sensors should detect events in milliseconds, and notifications should be sent out in less than one second. The solution should add even more value over time with no-cost automatic updates and new features. When done correctly, modern physical security solutions can reduce the burden on IT and security teams, improve productivity and business operations, and create better-performing and safer spaces.”

MORE ON PHYSICAL SECURITY: A framework for modernizing your video surveillance system.

Modern Video Surveillance Enhances Customer Experiences

Video systems also offer a path to improved customer experiences. For example, video tools make it possible to track customer movement through stores and prioritize product placement for maximum impact, or leverage dwell time data to craft marketing campaigns that specifically target customer interest.

With the right tools and platforms in place, Ensten notes, “items of interest can be easily identified, clipped, saved and shared with the push of a button, or even automatically.” The result is less time spent manually analyzing in-store trends and more opportunity to generate sustained ROI.

“You can save time and money with modern surveillance cameras and physical security systems,” he says. “On-camera intelligence paired with customized rules and policies can automate time-consuming and tedious tasks.”

Video surveillance systems have established their value as security solutions, but effective modernization and integration offers the potential to improve businesses’ operations and enhance customer experiences. 

Ensten puts it simply: “Data can be captured and analyzed, providing deep insights that can help improve business processes and outcomes.”