Growing a business to a point where it can run without your presence is an achievement. However, without proper guards and tools to ensure that everything runs as if you are there; theft, lazy employees and accidents caused by laxity can run businesses to the ground. On the other hand, there are those occurrences like burglaries that still happen despite our best efforts, however, that doesn’t mean that businesses are completely helpless in bringing perpetrators to justice. A CCTV system is one of the best ways out there that can improve the security and efficiency of businesses. Here is a look at how businesses can benefit from investing in CCTV systems.
Benefits of Having CCTV Systems
A CCTV is a closed system of camera’s placed in strategic positions accompanied by a monitoring system that includes screens which can be either placed at the premises or remotely through phones, tablets etc. Here are the benefits to businesses.
Prevention is always better than cure and the mere sight of CCTV cameras within and outside business premises is a sure way to make criminals think twice about stealing from your business. Additionally, employees with a history of theft will be deterred when they know that they are being watched.
A 2015 study done by researchers Brandon Welsh, David Farrington and Sema A. Taheri titled the ‘Effectiveness and Social Costs of Public Area Surveillance for Crime Prevention’ concluded that cameras combined with other tools such as effective lighting were the most effective way to deter and reduce crime. Even when you have a security guard on premises, research shows that CCTV cameras compliments and increases the effectiveness of guards to deter criminals.
The world has grown global and it is not unusual for SME owners in Kenya to make frequent visits to manufacturing and supply hubs like China and Turkey leaving operations in the hands of employees. However, with services like the Safaricom CCTV Backup, wherever you are you can receive real-time footage of what is happening in your business straight to your phone or laptop. Additionally, the system backs up all the footage recorded allowing you to refer back in case of any conflict or disagreements when you are back. Moreover, even when you are still on site but busy with other things, you can easily monitor sensitive areas like the cash register to see what employees are up to.
Employee monitoring using CCTV can also increase productivity as employees know that they are being watched should they be lax in their duties. Have you ever seen or been in one of those businesses where customers walk away when the owner or a certain employee is not there to serve them? Why? Because they don’t trust that they would be served accordingly when the owner is absent. However, with CCTV monitoring every employee ensures that they maintain the highest levels of customer service as if the owner is right there and this boosts productivity and customer confidence.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, up to 62 % of businesses have no disaster plan while 40 % never recover from disasters. The key to stopping disasters is identifying emergencies early and investing in a CCTV system is one way of doing that. Especially in businesses that deal with corrosive chemicals, or have large warehouses that make it hard to monitor all areas. In case of an employee accident, or when a fire breaks out, a company with live CCTV footage is more likely to spot it and respond before it escalates. Even in cases where an employee or the owner is working alone, CCTV monitoring can give them confidence that should anything happen, they always have eyes on them.
Every footage recorded by your CCTV cameras should be stored as a backup for review, and it doesn’t even have to cost an arm and a leg. For instance, Safaricom’s cloud CCTV backup service starts at Ksh500 per camera and one is assured of reliable backups even if people tamper with or steal your cameras. Having CCTV evidence is crucial as it helps police track down and arrest suspects. A study by researcher Martin Gill, et al; The Impact of CCTV: Fourteen Case Studies found that where cameras recorded crimes happening in parking areas, the cameras contributed heavily to solving those crimes. Thus, having video evidence opens a window into the possibility of tracking suspects and recovering stolen goods.
Video footage also helps business owners resolve disagreements between employees or conflict between customers and employees. It is not unusual to see managers coming out of their backroom offices to respond to commotions caused by customers after having monitored everything via CCTV. In such cases, CCTV makes it easier to determine the aggrieved party and correct or discipline as appropriate. In cases of shoplifting, it can be used in court to aid in prosecution.
With the prevalence of Internet of Thing (IoT) where many of the devices we use are connected and can communicate to each other i.e. CCTV cameras communicating to your phone, computer servers etc. Businesses can use the data collected via CCTV footage to predict and profile the tastes of consumers and therefore stock in response to their customer’s needs. For instance, if you have CCTV footage of customers movement, what they touch, the aisle they spend the most time on, what they buy etc. and all this is backed up via Safaricom’s cloud servers (which means it can be accessed from anywhere via the internet).
Video analytics specialists can take the footage analyse it and make recommendations to help you serve customers better and stay ahead of other businesses in the industry. In this economy data is king and CCTV systems take power back into hands of SMEs in ways never thought possible before. Here is more information on Safaricom’s CCTV service.
What are the benefits of the Safaricom CCTV backup service?
You get great value for money as prices starting from Ksh. 500 for one camera a month. There is also an easy to use online portal where you can get access to your footage from all over the world. The CCTV is also tamper-proof as you can still access footage from the online portal even if the physical camera has been tampered with. You get 24/7 support. If you need anything you can call 0722002222 and a technician will be available to sort you out. It also takes 3-5 days to set up the service.
How to get set up on the service.
You need a Valid business permit or trading license/certificate of incorporation, a PIN certificate, Owner’s national ID number or passport, an equivalent of one month’s subscription to the respective package, prepayment for your first month’s usage and a duly filled out application form filled.
To get more information SMS the word ‘CCTV’ to 40988 and Safaricom will get back to you on how to subscribe and install the service.
Gabriel is an entrepreneurship enthusiast, with a fondness for questioning the workings of everyday things. He is an entrepreneur, a lover of stories and a member of Rotaract.
He is a freelance writer ( engage me at www.writegarage.com), skilled in crafting engaging content; from fintech to marketing techniques, startup culture, business development, analysis...the list goes on ..the only thing that keeps him up is the fact that anyone can change the world.