Before selecting a physical security platform or changing up a physical security platform, transit authorities need to consider the potential challenges and pitfalls involved. Follow these steps to set your team up for a successful transition.
A Step-by-Step Guide to Onboarding a New Physical Security Platform
There’s no question that upgrading to a unified security system offers many benefits for mass transit authorities. A unified, open-architecture system is more efficient, easier to secure and maintain, and endlessly adaptable to your changing needs over time.
Yet, changing security platforms can be an intimidating task, especially for large and complex organizations whose various departments may each have their own set of systems and processes to deal with.
If you’ve decided to make the switch, this guide will help you navigate some of the key questions and common challenges that arise during the transition.
Step 1: Assemble Your Unification Dream Team
Moving a transit authority to a unified security system is not a quick fix. Getting all stakeholders in your organization on board, gathering requirements, retraining your security team, and beefing up your IT infrastructure are just a few of the steps you’ll need to follow to ensure the switch happens smoothly.
It’s a process that can take years to complete, but it’s important to take this time so that your staff and stakeholders feel confident that all the important questions have been addressed and nothing has been overlooked.
Because moving from an integrated physical security solution to a unified one is a long-term process, it’s best to start by identifying a central group of team members to shepherd the project along. The team should include staff with project management skills, members of the IT and security teams, and at least one person with internal communications expertise to help communicate the details of the transition plan and the benefits of the new system.
Step 2: Define Your Goals and Objectives
When creating your roadmap to unification, it’s important to clearly identify your security goals and objectives as an organization so you can select the best solution for your needs.
When you do this, consider your long-term goals. What does the future of your transit authority look like 5 or 10 years from now? Having a clear vision of this future in mind can help you narrow down the must-have features you need, not just for today’s requirements but over the long term.
Step 3: Identify Your IT and Infrastructure Needs
Once you have a clear picture of what your transit authority’s security needs are today and how these will evolve in the coming years, you can identify the specific IT and infrastructure features you need:
- True Unification: Is the provider’s suite of security solutions developed as one unit with modules you can switch off or on as needed? Or are they separate systems that must be connected together and maintained or upgraded separately?
- Open Architecture: Is the system compatible with a wide variety of hardware providers so that you can select the very best products for your needs? Or are you locked into a narrow set of options from selected partners?
- Easy Adaptability and Growth: Can you easily add or remove licenses and modules with additional features as your needs evolve?
- Cybersecurity: Does your provider provide clear guidance on how to harden your security settings? What encryption and other safeguards are in place to keep your data private and secure?
Step 4: Find The Right Partners
A unified vision improves collaboration, reduces security risks, and optimizes your team’s daily tasks. With a unified security system, you can easily view and manage data across different departments and organizations and quickly respond as required. To fully realize this vision, choose a partner with experience bridging organizational silos who can help you connect your security and operational teams across different divisions through one single, flexible platform.
Ready to get on the path to unified physical security?
Contact us to learn more about Maxxess Systems, our open and unified physical security platform. Check out our infographic to learn more about the difference between unified and integrated physical security systems.