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This month Simon Banks talks to Sarah Humphreys, Sales Director at Premier Alarms Ltd. Based in Sevenoaks, Kent, the family-owned business was founded over 40 years ago and has an extensive and diverse client base.

How are Premier Alarms taking on the challenge of the UK’s All IP project?

We are trying to be as proactive as we possibly can be. With a growing portfolio of high-net-worth customers, who need to ensure their security system is always working, it is important to ensure we are ahead of the switchover. To make sure there is no lapse in their connection to the monitoring station, we must encourage the transfer across to alternative technology as soon as possible. However, as many of our customers are also very busy individuals, often the difficulty is finding time to not only discuss the options available but also to visit the site to perform our upgrades.

What other concerns has All IP raised?

Like many companies, we are also seeing delays in lead times for many products, which does add further complications. We are hoping by being proactive, we can ensure we have stock available to us and can complete the upgrades in good time.  

Another concern for us is the insurance requirements surrounding many of our sites, which must have monitored systems to meet their specification. If they currently have a system that relies on PSTN, we know that at some point this will fail. Not only does this pose a risk of customers being uninsured for a period of time, but the increased demand for us to react quickly to get their system back up and running will naturally cause delays. Hence why we would rather complete this upgrade ahead of the communication path failing.  

How is the insurance world reacting to All IP?

Generally, we are finding the insurance world isn’t fully aware of how All IP impacts the security industry. The specifications are not outlining the need to move away from PSTN, which, unfortunately, is not assisting us in our conversations with end-users. The more that our industry associations and Openreach can work together to pass this message onto the insurance sector, the better for everyone.

Has the value offered by ECHO (Electronic Call Handling Operations) been communicated to the wider industry?

ECHO will offer Installers another area of added value in the ongoing battles with monitored vs self-monitored systems. The initiative needs more awareness among end-users and insurers, via Installers and manufacturers. As an industry, this will help us to show why a professionally installed and monitored system provides something that cannot be duplicated by any Apps or self-management systems. It is vital to the future of our sector.

With further knowledge, the insurance market can build this into their specifications where they ask for a Police response to be included in the installation. We know that in the future, any ECHO-ready solution will be the only way to get the level of police response our customers require.

YOU SAID IT!

"We use My Base and cannot fault it, so user-friendly"

Richard Edginton (Edg Security Ltd) – LinkedIn – 2 March

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