Owning a franchise business can sometimes be the fastrack to success. With that success you become a target of big shot salesmen and their gimmicky ways. After 12 years in the business the reality is that most corporate vendors tend to have highly inflated pricing and are selling antiquated equipment. There are a lot of things you can ask your security companies to find out if you’ll entering into a long lasting fairly blissful relationship or will you be seeking out a new contractor in 6 months.
Here are a few questions to ask and things to look for when finding a contractor for your next franchise security system.
The first thing to ask is if they work for franchisee’s in your program exclusively or do they have awide array of customers. I have nothing against businesses that make all their revenue on one large contract but this means your after support may not happen if their contract isn’t renewed. A company that has an active local sales force and active diversified presence in a local community you will typically find a longer lasting solution. Limiting your entire business on one or two contracts may seem like the gravy train (trust me it is) but it also can erupt in your face overnight.The other reason this detail is important is because of the inflated pricing corporate vendors try to pass off on franchisee’s. As a franchisee you always like to think your leadership has your best interest in mind, but that might not always be the case. I was able to provide a brand new 32 Camera system for a local McDonald’s at a fraction of the cost of a big company could do it for.
Ask your sales rep about the equipment. Is it state of the art. Are you getting the best available for the price range. Sometimes you are getting 2-3 years ago’s junk. its best to ask upfront as to not be surprised at the end. HD Is the standard now and anybody offering analog or 720p turn the other way. 1080p is the minimum at this point and we are starting to install a lot of 4 MegaPixel IP Cameras.
Another big question that gets asked far to often after its too late. What state are you based out of. A lot of contract only companies do a lot of traveling and with that comes a lack of service when needed. If your installers aren’t local and you have a problem you might be on your own. Most of the time calling a reputable local company is a long shot as most companies don’t really like to work on other peoples work. Its too much liability. I’ve learned this the hard way. I’ve spent one too many hours fixing peoples garbage and then fixing a lot of other things because the domino effect of a poor installation can create 10 issues and now I am stuck fixing them all.
These aren’t the only things you can ask or look into obviously, but they can serve as a basis of knowledge to help you find the right contractor for your Franchise Business.
With homelessness and crime on the rise, HOA’s are commonly seeing their common areas broken into, vandalized, burglarized, and become squatters territory for the evening and you end up with drug paraphernalia everywhere in the morning. Its downright disgusting and as a man that has two young boys myself, the children risk all kids of dangers with that type of behavior going on. Here are some ways you can help keep it at a minimum?
The first way is the one most HOA’s are starting to approach. Security Cameras can watch many different areas of your property. Lets say you had three different pools and wanted to link them all up to the park main clubhouse. SecurityBud can do it with our AnyFI system. The sky is really the limit and we have a lot of experience with HOA’s and property management companies so at this point we know what needs to be seen and how it needs to be approached to maximize your benefit. Everything exposed must be in conduit for these installations. There isn’t a wire thats allowed to ‘be exposed in HOA applications due to the simple fact that if these people that are vandalizing your property are willing to break doors, locks, glass, furniture, etc, then they would definitely cut an exposed security wire. We receive a lot of service calls to fix bad wiring. I have seen cut wires on many occasions. Because I have seen it happen, I would never install something that was questionable or at risk and if your thinking of doing this yourself or your in a state that SecurityBud doesn’t handle then make sure you don’t have any exposed wiring. It may be a little more money on the install but it will be worth it in the long run.
One of the biggest benefits and value adders to these surveillance systems is the ability to give your board members logins to access the surveillance cameras. It helps with neighborhood watch efforts ten fold.
The second method to really get on the offensive is the proper access control system. These systems monitor the ins and outs of the tenants that use them. We typically use 1200lb mag-locks with push-bars for most pools and most clubhouses. My personal favorite access controller is the Axis A1001 door controller because I like the drag and drop set up with your schedules, groups, key-card set up, and users. It also affords you the flexibility to integrate with surveillance systems to help with facial recognition.
This one is very important. Make sure your iron and gate guy is halfway decent. Shoddy and flat out embarrassing work is seen every day on job-sites. I’ve built hot rods and customs for years so I know what welds are supposed to look like and the gauge of material is the cheapest you can get. Hire someone that understands your security needs and can recommend proper fending to help keep people that shouldn’t be there out.