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How The Economy is Affecting Central Station Monitoring

Mar 10, 2020 8:00:00 AM

As of this writing, the economy continues to be strong. Unemployment remains at an all-time low and economic growth continues, albeit at a slowing pace. That’s great for the average person, but what does this mean for central monitoring stations?

The Impact The Economy Has On Central Station Monitoring

When the economy does well, we all prosper. While that’s true on an employee/consumer level, the pendulum does shift somewhat for central monitoring stations. Why is that? It first starts with employment.

Employment

Many central stations are finding it difficult to hire and retain talent. A big part of the reason is that the talent pool is slim pickings. Currently, the unemployment rate sits around 3.9%, which has been historically low. The personnel to do specific jobs are hard to come by.

This can become increasingly difficult when it comes to a central station’s IT department. As the threat to cyber security increases, so does the amount of security that is needed. This increase in security — firewalls, intrusion detection, data encryption, etc. — means central station monitoring companies need larger and more specialized IT teams. And these IT specialists are not cheap, especially considering the lack of talent in the economic hiring pool.

When it comes to the foundation of central station monitoring centers, operators are demanding more compensation and flexibility. In 2020, the standard 9am - 5pm workday isn’t flexible enough for the everyday young professional beginning their career. Many have complicated school schedules and internships that make them available for odd hours of the day.

States like California, Washington, and areas such as Washington D.C, have raised minimum wages — some as high as $15 an hour. Many employees left in the hiring pool won’t accept minimum wages, because they can find work at better wages. In order for central stations to hire and retain more operators, in many cases, they are being forced to raise their wages.

Technology

This is not so much the economy driving change as it is the digitization of our modern culture, but the technology used to keep alarm monitoring centers secure is rising fast. As stated above, cyber threats are more pertinent than ever. To properly protect the data — and there is a lot of it — in a central monitoring center, the technology needs to be nothing short of exceptional.

With firewalls and network protocols, servers, monitoring software, cloud platforms, etc., there is a lot of technology needed to properly protect a central station, and none of it is cheap. Like stated above, the cost of the employees who can properly manage these specialized systems is also skyrocketing.

What Can Security Businesses Do

These factors can make it difficult for small central stations to stay afloat. Fortunately, it’s no longer uncommon to have a third-party monitoring company like AvantGuard take over monitoring services for your company. Shifting the monitoring services over to a third-party company can be cost effective for many reasons: no need to pay for infrastructure, technology or employee costs. This leaves your business to deal with the things it does best.

If you’re looking for a great central station monitoring partnership, reach out to AvantGuard today.

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