Commercial Integrator + Security Sales March 2024 - 44

Five Key Security Challenges in Construction
INTEGRATOR INSIGHTS by Brent Van Haren
IN THE MODERN construction landscape, it has become
increasingly complex to implement eff ective security
measures for new builds. Vulnerabilities, ineffi ciencies and
unexpected costs are encountered quite oſt en. In this article,
we will delve into fi ve unique obstacles when it comes to
securing new constructions, and we'll share ways to minimize
the pain and risk experienced by partners and clients.
Security is an Afterthought
What's Happening: Whether the end user or the general contractor
hires the security integrator, they aren't included in early planning.
Oſt en, security must fi t its way into what's already in motion.
The Pain: Confl icting scopes and poor rough-in details for
partnered trades result in having to expend excessive energy to
close the gaps. Usually, once security integrators are involved,
it's too late to change things, and there are fewer options, which
may not address threats, risks and vulnerabilities.
Our Recommendation: Engage the entire project team in
pre-construction planning. A trusted partner who thinks
beyond technology and uses a comprehensive approach will
understand the need and align the solution.
Technology is Overdesigned
What's Happening: Oſt en, the focus is the build, according
to design and code, because it is challenging to anticipate
details that drive effi ciency, safety and comfort. This leads to
overdesign and reliance on product without procedure.
The Pain: Overemphasizing systems and products drives costs
that might not align with actual threats, risks and vulnerabilities.
In healthcare, siloed systems with shared functionality are not
leveraged across departments, leading to ineffi ciency.
Our Recommendation: Technology is necessary, but it needs the
people, procedures and training to back it up. Understand an environment's
threats, risks and vulnerabilities fi rst; only then can you
identify the best combination of technology and procedure.
Security Solutions are Proprietary
What's Happening: With new construction, the installation company
oſt en chooses security hardware or soſt ware that can only
be sourced and serviced through them.
The Pain: Proprietary hardware and soſt ware limits ongoing
support, which creates challenges and delays. When future
needs cannot be met in every instance, clients experience
expensive and complicated " rip-and-replace " cycles.
Our Recommendation: Futureproof your investment and
choose hardware that is open to multiple types of soſt ware with
successful maintenance track records. Make sure the installation
company isn't the only one sourcing and servicing the system.
Overcoming security challenges in construction requires
a holistic approach and a harmonized eff ort by integrators,
contractors and clients.
Door Hardware Considerations
What's Happening: With door hardware, the focus is oſt en on meeting
scope and life safety. Client operations, cost, serviceability and
operations can be overlooked, which can create roadblocks later.
The Pain: During inspections, door hardware components
oſt en fail because they don't meet code. Sometimes, openings
don't function, which can lead to frequent change orders,
unexpected delays and higher costs.
Our Recommendation: Find a partner who thinks beyond just
meeting scope and instead, advocates for everyone's best interest.
Meet early and oſt en with the security integrator, door-hardware
contractor and building-code representative.
Design Fails to Align with Environment and Use
What's Happening: Clients are rarely involved in design, and
low-cost solutions are frequently chosen. Therefore, there isn't
much consideration given to space usage, safety needs, and the
unique building structure and environment.
The Pain: The space might not align with how traffic
flows or where activities happen. The security solution
might be too complex or not robust enough, leading to
changes and unexpected costs.
Our Recommendation: Work with a partner who will engage
clients in the design phase to understand their needs comprehensively.
Lean on them to push for effi ciency with solutions,
as well as integrations that solve not just one problem (e.g.,
doors that don't merely lock but, instead, lock, sound a local
alarm and push out an email notifi cation).
A Harmonized Eff ort
It is evident that overcoming these challenges requires a holistic
approach and a harmonized eff ort. I believe that, through
innovation, collaboration and a commitment to enhancing
new construction, we can pave the way for safer, more resilient
environments in the future. SSI
BRENT VAN HAREN, serves as president and visionary at SecurAlarm, a 30-year-old family business. Van Haren is on the PSA
Leadership Committee.
44 Commercial Integrator+Security Sales & Integration | March 2024
PARRADEE/STOCK.ADOBE.COM

Commercial Integrator + Security Sales March 2024

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