Not so long ago the technology available for tracking the actions of security assets and their guard tour consisted of a spiral bound notebook, a checklist on a clipboard and the honor system. Guards would patrol their designated areas and check off the designated items on their list throughout their shift–check this door, this fence line, ensure the roof hatch is secure, etc. If anything noteworthy occurred during their patrol it would get jotted down in the trusty pocket notebook with the time of occurrence. The more advanced security companies might even keep a Microsoft Excel database where guards could enter all of their notes at the end of their shift, providing an electronic record of their patrol should anyone want to review it.
Times have changed.
Guard tour systems have advanced right along with technology, and gone are the days of the spiral bound notebooks and Excel spreadsheets. Today, guard tour systems employ GPS so that security companies and their clients can plan, monitor and accomplish guard tours while ensuring that each officer completes the designated tasks at the designated times and at the designated locations.
This advanced officer management technology employs a form of digital logbook so that officer activities and times are recorded when guards reach specific checkpoints during his or her patrol. Officers can enter additional data into the checkpoint entry and report incidents and emergencies in real time. At the end of watch, all of this information is easily searchable in the digital logbook, providing security management and clients with a tremendous amount of accountability.
4 Ways Using Technology to Track Guard Tour Helps All Tiers of the Security Operation
It’s probably no surprise that technology advances have improved the functionality of guard tours–few industries don’t benefit from advancing technology. But let’s dive a little deeper into a few of the different tiers of a security operation and how GPS and guard tour tracking can benefit each.
There’s an inherent risk involved when you work in the security field, and unexpected and often dangerous events should be, well…expected. When these situations arise, adrenaline floods the body, muscle memory takes over and officers act on impulse. Oftentimes those impulses don’t involve calling or radioing in the situation to a command post or supervisor. The officer simply acts.
A GPS enabled guard tour system allows the officer to send an emergency message with the push of a button. Furthermore, some technology (like that provided by trackforce™) provides lone worker protection through notification alerts that are activated by things like falls, unexpected impacts and many other variable situations. Administrators can monitor these notifications and determine the next course of action. They can deploy backup officers and even locate incapacitated guards by using the GPS functionality.
At the end of the day, officers are provided with the peace of mind that comes with knowing that even when they’re working alone, there’s always someone watching over their shoulder, ready to provide assistance the minute they need it.
No organization wants to think about the possibility that their team members would cut corners or slack on their duties, but it’s an unfortunate reality. Guard tour systems allow supervisors to monitor their guards in real time and ensure that they’re completing the tasks they were hired for and assigned to do.
Guard tour systems will record officers’ activities, and this, in turn, will allow managers and supervisors to determine the reliable guards from the unreliable ones. The good officers will support this functionality, and the overall organization will see an increase in performance and professionalism.
GPS enabled guard tour systems also allow supervisors to manage more remotely than ever before, and this will allow them to manage more territories overall. This, in turn, makes the overall company more valuable and drives increased business.
Management and Owners Can Show Service Delivery to Clients
Whether the guard tour system is outsourced by another security company or employed directly by an end user like a mall, hospital or school, you can bet that the client is going to want assurance that their money is being well spent and that they’re getting what they paid for.
With a top of the line guard system, the managers can easily show clients that guards are accomplishing assigned tasks appropriately. Furthermore, GPS tracking allows for the precise scheduling of guards based on checkpoints and the time it takes to complete tasks. This can result in labor savings that can be passed on to the end user. Savings are also passed on because supervisors won’t have to “double check” guard activities or inspect missed checkpoint scans. All of that can be managed remotely, resulting in more cash in the pockets of both the security firm and their clients.
Guarding Companies Can Win New Contracts
A well-polished guard tour system is a major selling point for the security technology provider. When it comes to security, most organizations will want to go with the provider that’s the best equipped. Here are some of the industries that can benefit from GPS-enabled guard tour systems and why:
* Security companies…can increase the monitoring and ultimate safety of their officers.
* Warehouse facilities…can provide an increased level of security for their products.
* Schools…can increase the level of safety for their students.
* Real estate management companies…can better protect their properties and the assets inside.
Technology advances drive most professional industries forward, and the security industry is no exception. When the security and safety of millions of dollars in assets and human lives are at stake, security providers and their clients should strive to employ the most advanced technology available to accomplish their mission. A guard tour system with GPS technology is the answer. It will provide unprecedented levels of accountability, automation, protection and reliability. The result is an increase in professionalism and effectiveness for the security provider and peace of mind for the client.