With several thousand criminal acts reported annually on U.S. campuses, ranging from vehicle theft to burglary, assault and sexual offenses, many challenges affect the safety and security of educational facilities. Campus stakeholders responsible for security know that it’s imperative to adopt a holistic approach, reviewing several factors involved with creating a comfortable environment, conducive to learning, while offering peace of mind to students and parents.
A 360-degree perspective on campus security requires the involvement of various campus organizations. A secure campus is built across multiple departments and budgets, beyond emergency management and campus police. Leadership within facilities, IT departments and administrators must come together to foster a prominent safety culture.
How can integrators and campus stakeholders “REALISE” an effective vision centered around security goals?
Respond to incidents in a timely, efficient manner
Ensure cross-functional coordination of resources
Accurately relay pertinent information to targeted stakeholders
Leverage investments in existing infrastructure and technology
Increase first responders’ efficacy, while simplifying training
Standardize and reduce complexities of maintaining and administering disparate systems
Enforce adherence to policy and procedural protocols
Because each campus is unique, the approach to addressing common issues can be based upon best practices, but is ultimately as distinctive as the environments and challenges campus stakeholders face. Considerations vary from rural to urban campuses, consolidated to wide footprints and always by size of student enrollment. An initial physical assessment and technology inventory is always recommended. From there, key findings should be presented to multiple decision makers to demonstrate a responsible, 360-degree view on anticipated risks and areas for improvement, and then prioritized, considering overall campus impact, costs and benefits associated. This process enables integrators and end-users to leverage the power of business-class solutions for security. Day-to-day operational functions become streamlined, work-flow processes are optimized and, in the event of a major emergency, total command and control is available for response and recovery.
Greg Berg is the Regional Manager for G4S Technology specializing in educational and campus settings. He is an expert in Mass Notification and Emergency Communications Systems (MNS/ ECS) as well as systems integration, IP technologies, PSIM and access control and video. With nearly 20 years’ experience he has assisted in the design and implementation of some of the most sophisticated campus security technology projects in the country. G4S Technology is the world’s leading security provider, employing more than 600,000 people across the world. G4S’ security systems technology team is ranked among the top 10 integrators in the U.S. and is committed to partnering with customers for innovative, reliable, cost effective solutions. The provider assists education customers with risk mitigation, incident management, Clery compliance and reporting requirements as well as security systems design, installation, integration and service.