Welcome to our August issue. We have a bunch of focus areas this month, from fire to our IFSEC SA review to storage, to our annual healthcare feature and a look at the world of system integration.
The term system integrator (SI) is one of those titles that companies often apply to themselves without actually having the resources to deliver the services an SI should. But there again, what should an SI do? We put this question to a few people we thought should know and you can see the responses in our SI section.
Safe to say, calling yourself a SI is not simply a title, it involves a host of skills and technical capabilities you generally cannot get from the shop on the corner. And as the world moves to more integrated systems, those without the required skills are going to be in trouble. Although they did not say it openly, the only way smaller companies are going to compete in large projects is to ensure they have in-depth skills and knowledge on specific niche areas.
Making yourself an expert in a niche is really the only way for smaller businesses to prepare for the future and be co-opted into larger projects. Naturally there is still an enormous amount of smaller or solution-specific projects out there for the small players to play in, but money talks and as customers become more educated they will demand integrated solutions instead of silos of product specific installations.
A recent article on IPVM.com highlighted the problems customers have with their SIs. The article highlights three common reasons for firing your SI: poor service, lack of knowledge and too expensive/lack value. Sounds like these complaints are levelled at SIs globally, you can read the article at www.ipvm.com/report/why_integrators_get_fired .
We also review the first Hi-Tech Security Solutions Executive Breakfast in this issue. Clem Sunter was our guest speaker on the topic of scenario planning. The audience was incredibly positive of his contribution with everyone giving him maximum points in the feedback.
Looking at the brief overview we offer in the article will give you food for thought with respect to planning for your own and your business’s future. However, you can find much more information on www.mindofafox.com or by grabbing one of his books. The books on sale at the Executive Breakfast sold out in minutes.
And on the topic of scenarios, we are working on the Access and Identity Management Handbook 2013. Let us know if you have anything to contribute, and if you have not received the brief for it yet, let me know on firstname.lastname@example.org and I will get it to you.
And, as always, any comments on this issue can be sent to the same address.
Axis Communications has notified Hi-Tech Security Solutions that the case study titled ‘Retail giant rolls out additional surveillance’ in the July issue contained outdated information and the company has therefore retracted information included in the case study.
Andrew Seldon – Editor
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