Sometimes, taking a step back and looking at the basics is necessary to come up with new solutions. The security market is at a turning point where it would benefit from doing just that.
Much has been happening in the security market in terms of access control, time attendance and other features concerned with who is authorized to go where as well as how and when. This is important as businesses are growing in size and are often split up in different branches at multiple locations. Having an access control system in place that offers the possibility to add new users for certain areas and time slots as well as delete them when they are no longer authorized is a major improvement from the old mechanical locks. To fulfill user needs, the most important thing to determine is the purpose of the door and the characteristics of the lock. Is the door for goods or people? Is the safety of the people inside the building a top priority? The next question is whether the door will be mostly in the locked or unlocked status and whether there will be a frequent use of the door. This list of questions is all but finished, but, unfortunately, salespeople these days are too concerned with meeting their quotas and spend insufficient time on finding out the actual needs of the client.
Many manufacturers follow this same route and develop locks that can be used in multiple applications. It is easier to offer this type of all-purpose locks than it is to search or develop the optimal solution for the client. “Our company is aware that we are aiming at an already niche market, but by producing quality products that are tailored to the needs of each consumer, we will always be the choice for those who want the job done well,” said Jack Boeckx Jr., Managing Director of B&B Locks.
Every door is different and needs to be studied individually. Some may be exposed to wind or sun, others to rain or humidity; some have to cope with improper use or vandalism. All of these are important points in choosing the right product. Unfortunately, many manufacturers are simply developing locks that are just good enough to reach a certain classification instead of making them as good as they can. Consumers are, thus, left in the dark on the actual performance and optimal working conditions of locks. A few months later, users may find themselves with a defective lock and are told the problem is due to improper use or the fact that the lock can only handle a limited amount of traffic flow per day. If the consumer already knows that a specific door is going to be used frequently, certain products should not be offered in the first place. With security issues thrown into the mix, only a handful of locks would be appropriate.
Access control has come a very long way and will continue to grow with many nice features to come — not only accessible for large businesses, but also for the private sector. Manufacturers, distributors and installers will just have to put in the effort to inform the end user of the best possible solution for their particular needs.