Does your camera have a job description?

March 2009 CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring

In a few years time we will probably look back and realise that we are in the middle of the CCTV revolution. Whatever the problem, it seems that somehow the CCTV camera is seen as the solution.

Then you bump into a recent CCTV installation owner who is excited about the new investment. The key words are IP, megapixel, high resolution, digital and more recently, video analytics.

So you ask the new owner how it was decided to place cameras and what technology and system setup was selected. This is usually the end of the discussion or if there has been some thought put into the solution, an exciting discussion on the risk analysis, defining the threats and development of a security plan is described.

If all is well, the conversation goes on to describe the careful integration of labour and electronics to have an integrated solution. This all led to the careful selection, position and setup of the system! Wonderful.

Sadly, the above process is not often followed and there is a certain amount of confusion regarding the reason for such questioning. The very same client/supplier would however never place security guards at posts without carefully checking how much it costs and what the job description of each guard is.

So why do we not do the same for all the security components, access control, CCTV, alarms etc?

It is just that we have forgotten that the electronics is performing a similar task to a person, placed at the same position, but without clear instructions or a job description.

It is time to integrate all CCTV designs by having a job description for each camera. If there is no job description, you do not need a camera.

The development of a job description can be a tedious process, but well worth the exercise. It also leaves a record of the CCTV battle plan, as envisaged by the designer, for the operational staff to understand and use efficiently.

And how do you develop such a job description? The most efficient approach for compiling this document is to tabulate the requirements for each camera by asking the following questions:

* What: must the camera do and produce?

* When: must the camera do what is required?

* Why: is this video data required?

* Where: must the camera be looking?

* How: is the requirement going to be made available.

It is time to put all your cameras to work and give them a full job description. The result? The correct camera, in the correct position, doing the correct job – and hopefully a reduction in crime.

For more information contact Rob Anderson, Rob Anderson & Associates, +27 (0)31 267 4150,

Share this article:
Share via emailShare via LinkedInPrint this page

Further reading:

Securing Savannah Hills Estate
August 2019, Rhyco Risk Projects , CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring, Perimeter Security, Alarms & Intruder Detection
Savannah Hills Estate in Midrand planned a security upgrade which was awarded to Rhyco Risk Projects. The project started in March 2019 and was completed in May 2019.

10 things to consider when shopping for a VMS
August 2019, Genetec , CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring, Integrated Solutions
Today’s video management systems (VMS) provide a wide range of tools and capabilities that help make security personnel more efficient by allowing them to focus on what really matters.

How far are we really at with artificial intelligence?
August 2019, Axis Communications SA , Editor's Choice, CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring, IT infrastructure, Residential Estate (Industry)
Justin Ludik unpacks exactly how far AI has come and what it potentially can do for society and more importantly, surveillance.

Enhancing security with AI
August 2019, Hikvision South Africa , CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring
Hikvision explains how residential estates can revolutionise their security strategies and outcomes with artificial intelligence.

More than simply a camera
August 2019, Forbatt SA, Secutel Technologies , CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring, Residential Estate (Industry)
With the human element being the weakest link in all security solutions, Hi-Tech Security Solutions looks at the pros and cons of using body-worn cameras in estates.

The importance of effective perimeter security
August 2019, Elf Rentals - Electronic Security Solutions, Stafix , Editor's Choice, CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring, Residential Estate (Industry)
Protecting the perimeter is critical for any residential estate; how does one go about making sure your perimeter is as secure as possible?

Security playing speedcop
August 2019, Axis Communications SA, Hikvision South Africa , CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring, Residential Estate (Industry)
Estates now have a legal precedent to manage their traffic and fine people in the estate for violations of the rules; all they need do is find solutions that will support them.

CathexisVision video management software
August 2019, Cathexis Technologies , Products, CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring
The CathexisVision IP video management software (VMS) helps clients get the most out of their surveillance investment and reap rewards for their companies.

Capture every detail with Smart PIR kits
August 2019, Longse Distribution , Home Security, CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring, Residential Estate (Industry)
Longse Technology offers DIY smart security kits that are easy to install and offer a Wi-Fi range that can reach up to 300 metres.

Future-facing cameras
August 2019, Bosch Building Technologies , Products, CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring
All FLEXIDOME IP starlight 8000i cameras feature built-in Intelligent Video Analytics, making them intuitive, and elevates their importance far beyond security alone.