Is it Time to Upgrade Your School’s Security System?

Verkada School Physical Security

Over the past two decades, there’s been an evolution in the role of school district technology directors and their teams. School technology teams today find themselves responsible for installing and maintaining systems and software, managing complex networks, and performing help desk duties.

As the Internet of Things (IoT) has become a standard in schools, IT teams are now managing an even broader set of responsibilities like network-connected HVAC systems and security systems. 

Unfortunately, staff and budgets haven’t necessarily grown at the same rate as the responsibilities of the school’s technology team. As a result, teams are trying to identify solutions to help them do more with fewer people. One area where they’re looking to gain efficiency is in school security. In this article, we’ll detail the four signs it’s time to upgrade your school’s video security system and talk through how Applied Technologies and our solutions partner Verkada can help you free up time and budget for other activities. 

“We’re working closely with thousands of school districts to not only deliver a video security solution that is making campuses safer, but one that also solves for additional non-safety related challenges educational leaders face,” shared Jeff Chase, Product Marketing at Verkada.

Sign 1:

The School Security System Can’t Do Its Job Without IT Intervention

When there’s an incident in one of the schools in your district, and someone needs to access video footage, what does that look like for your team? If you’re like many of the technology directors we talk to, it requires someone sifting through hours of footage to identify the incident. Once you do find the footage you need, there are additional complications getting it into a useful medium, and very rigid requirements for which devices it can be viewed on. 

If the above scenario sounds all too familiar, it’s a sure sign that you’re due for an upgrade that will eliminate the need for you and your team to play the role of middleman between principals and vice principals, and their security cameras. One of the biggest benefits of Verkada’s cloud-based video security solution is that it allows end users to get to the footage they need on their own, from any connected device, and find that footage in seconds. Users can be trained on the mobile app in a matter of minutes, freeing up your team for other high priority tasks.  

Sign 2:

Your Security System is Depleting Bandwidth District-Wide

A major problem we see with traditional school video security systems is bandwidth. In many districts, video flows to one central server hub at the district office. That means large video files are flowing through each school’s network and then onto a fiber connection between each school and the district. The result, as you’ve likely experienced, is a depleted bandwidth district-wide.   

You need a video security system in your schools, but you can’t slow down everything else in the name of security. The cloud-based nature of Verkada’s school security systems removes large video files from your local network, opening up bandwidth and ensuring smooth operation throughout your district.  

Sign 3:

Making Changes to the System is a Difficult and Time-Consuming Process

Imagine there is an issue of theft at one of your schools, in an area where there are no video cameras installed. The principal calls with a request to move a camera to provide visibility for the area where the theft is taking place. How complicated of a process would that be with your existing school security system? If it’s like many of the systems in place in school districts across the country, there’s no such thing as a “quick change.”

Verkada’s solutions allow cameras to quickly and easily be relocated if a need arises. As long as there’s an available ethernet port, a camera can be uninstalled from one location and reinstalled in another in less than ten minutes. 

Sign 4:

There’s No Clear Ownership of Security Budget

Who owns the budget for your district’s shared video security solution today? If you have multiple schools sharing the same hard drive to store video data, who is responsible for repairs, upgrades, and add-ons? Too often, shared IT teams are expected to shoulder that bill. Your team likely doesn’t have time to change the hard drives, let alone money set aside to pay for them. 

Verkada’s solution removes the need for expensive video storage, allowing technology directors to centrally manage the system, while allocating costs specifically to the schools for the equipment they’re using. Principals in each school have a direct relationship with the video security system, and IT can be completely removed from the financial responsibility discussion when spending decisions are made.     

There Is a Better Way to Manage Your School’s Video Security System

Applied Technologies has a better approach to installing and managing your school security needs. We partner with Verkada to implement cloud-based school video security solutions and eliminate the need for dedicated servers and bogged down networks. They put access to footage directly in the hands of the principals and vice principals who need it, from any device, using a simple and easy-to-operate app. 

“We are excited to be partnered with the experts at Applied Technologies to help IT teams at schools better manage their physical security systems,” says Rob Marwanga, Head of Partner Marketing at Verkada. 

If you’re ready to optimize the performance of your school security system and free up time, money, and bandwidth, contact us at 314-274-8000 or [email protected] to start the conversation.  

Photo: Provided by Verkada