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CCTV

Having a CCTV system in place helps give businesses peace of mind that their facilities are safe and secure as well as providing useful operational and customer insights.

Key benefits

CCTV systems help businesses monitor theft, increase staff safety and confirm incidents. Employees will feel safer knowing a CCTV system is in place to protect them. The video footage collected by these systems is also highly valuable when investigating criminal incidents. More recently businesses have been using CCTV systems to improve their operations by reviewing the data and analytics these systems collect. Particularly in a retail environment CCTV systems can provide data and insight into how customers move throughout a store and what they engage with, some systems will also be able to use facial recognition to determine age and gender of customers. These insights can help drive important business decisions that will improve customer experience and profitability.

Key things to consider

Selecting the right CCTV system setup is an important decision for all types of businesses. There is a vast range of different cameras and equipment available, with varying capabilities so making the right choice for your particular businesses is vitally important.

Indoor or outdoor

The majority of cameras used for CCTV systems are suited for both indoor and outdoor settings, however businesses must consider things such as how the camera will be mounted and housed securely. For example if a camera is used in a large warehouse where temperatures are often cold, choosing a camera which has a heating system built in will ensure durability and operational excellence even in cold temperatures. Another example would be within a transport hub where it would be most appropriate to use a robust solution with paying particular attention to it’s fixing and housing as these environments tend to cause more disruption to fixings and housing due to the high level of vibrations from passenger footfall and the transportation vehicles themselves.

Visibility

Some businesses like to keep their cameras for CCTV discreet, others want them to be visabilly prominent. It all comes down to the individual business and the area they wish to monitor. Larger cameras are more likely to discourage people from committing criminal acts. Smaller cameras such as dome cameras are much more discrete and Pan Tilt Zoom cameras are best if covering a large area as these cameras allow users to focus in and follow specific subjects.

Size of area

The best type of camera for your CCTV system is dependent on the size of the area you wish together. As mentioned previously Pan Tilt Zoom cameras are most suited for larger areas as they tend to be more powerful with the added ability to cover a wide area and then focus on suspicious activity. Incorporating Pan Tilt Zoom cameras into your CCTV setup will also reduce the number of cameras required to cover an area which can keep cost down. However if the area being covered is only small usually smaller static cameras are a suitable solution.

Audio integration

Having audio integrated with a CCTV system can act as another deterring factor for possible perpetrators. As users will be able to hear and speak with them, audio monitors can also be fitted to auto record when alarms are raised or audio passes a certain volume.

Video quality

Again the area being covered and the environment will alter the level of resolution required of the camera being used for the CCTV system. For example retailers often want high-quality images for identification of shoplifting perpetrators. Whereas lower resolution cameras are probably more appropriate for small areas like office spaces.

Environment

Lighting conditions need to be considered when choosing where to place CCTV system cameras, in particular when placing outdoor cameras. Sunlight and the amount of daylight in an area will see all effect camera placement as well background glare from lighting reflecting off windows or other reflective surfaces.

Scalability

Traditional CCTV systems were often on a closed circuit meaning everything had to be hard wired in. This causes all sorts of issues when businesses expand their premises. Therefore it’s often better for business now to choose IP cameras which connect over a wireless network, allowing easy scalability as and when required.

Analytics

If businesses would like to constantly monitor video footage they capture on their CCTV systems cameras then a good video management system (VMS) is essential. VMS can help with in-built analytics that alert users to suspicious activity and apply analytics, to improve business efficiency. These systems have the ability to detect motion and thus the number of people entering a retailer. This can be used to build KPI reports for retailers.

Before businesses plan their CCTV system, they will need to think about their video management requirements. The key drivers behind the purchase of a CCTV system will often help you identify the key elements of video management you require.

Our experts say

Whether you’re concerned about a shop, home office or an outdoor business, an easy-to-use security camera can set your mind at ease. With higher quality footage than ever before, and options to suit every budget, all you need to do is narrow your list.

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