Organisations are increasingly looking for security solutions that provide actionable business intelligence (BI). Bill Hobbs, global vice president at PAC & GDX’s sister company 3xLOGIC, explains how analytics based BI tools are helping to turn raw data into meaningful information.
We live in a data orientated world and the amount produced is simply mindboggling. Every day we create 2.5 quintillion bytes of data and in the year 2022 more data traffic will be created than during all the other ‘internet years’ combined. Furthermore, it is estimated that there will be 41.6 billion connected devices by 2025 and many of these will be deeply entrenched into business processes.
Part of the process
According to Gartner, BI is a term that ‘includes the applications, infrastructure and tools, and best practices that enable access to, and analysis of, information’. It covers data, computing and analytics within business operations, and offers enterprises an indispensable tool for reducing operational costs, developing comfortable working environments, enhancing efficiencies, optimising staffing levels, gathering marketing intelligence, reducing risk and identifying where training and skills development is required.
As security and access control technology becomes more and more agnostic in terms of the data it delivers, the focus has shifted to how BI data can be utilised to allow businesses to operate more effectively and help to create truly intelligent buildings. Organisations in a variety of vertical sectors – from retail and restaurants to hospitality and finance and beyond – can benefit from cloud based BI software that is seamlessly integrated into existing security systems.
Aims and objectives
Before implementing a BI solution it’s important to define goals, requirements, limitations and definitions of success – and this means understanding what type of information is important to the operation of a business.
Once this has been ascertained and the system configured appropriately, real time visual indicators can show valuable information about all aspects of operational performance, with intuitive icons, graphs and images configured for an end user’s specific needs. A diverse array of analytical parameters can also be set-up including historical weather conditions, traffic and footfall, transaction conversion rates, waiting times and queues, site comparison and performance, while heat mapping allows an end user to visually see where people are going within a location and quickly identify patterns of behaviour.
End users can also track and improve metrics to optimise the success of their businesses in areas such as people development, operational performance and efficiency, intrusion data monitoring and financial activity. A report can then be generated that is completely customisable, even offering an at-a-glance overview of an individual employee’s priorities and responsibilities.
Key performance indicators (KPIs) can also be defined. For example, in order to assist loss prevention and identify employee fraud, KPI reporting, backed-up with video based evidence, can identify top offenders within an organisation, helping to quickly remove them from the operation. In a retail environment, for example, store managers can even review all employee transactional behaviour, see how many people are working, what job they are doing and the revenue generated per hour.
Prevention is always better than cure and push notifications allow an end user to be alerted to an issue at the earliest possible opportunity – before an incident or problem escalates, while the cloud enables much more effective use of mobile connectivity and apps. In these times of tighter budgets, the use of this technology means lower deployment costs and a reduction in capital expenditure.
In an increasingly competitive business environment, having the right BI software in place to drive productivity is a primary objective. It is therefore no surprise that BI is changing how companies operate by presenting historical and real time data in ways that are both engaging and informative – offering unrivalled levels of visibility and helping to identify issues that can have a detrimental impact on a company’s bottom line. With leading manufacturers developing increasingly innovative solutions, enterprises can configure intuitive BI that evolves with their needs and keeps them one step ahead of their competitors.