Now that true integration is here, it’s possible for the security system to display things only the property-management software once had access to. A great example is when somebody is using a keypad to access the property some systems can thank the person for his business, give a reminder about rental due dates or newly available units, or even market a discount for referrals.
You can provide a great deal of knowledge without ever having any actual contact with the tenant, which can be of great importance with so many 24-hour facilities in operation today. Your security system will act as an after-hours office assistant, collection agent and marketing manager in addition to providing a greater level of security system awareness.
All of this is made possible by taking the word “integration” by its definition—a method used to form, coordinate or blend into a functioning or unified whole. No transmitting database information off to a secondary processor with the opportunity for data to be corrupted. No handing off from one program to the other with the opportunity for the data to be tampered with or overridden without an audit trail. These are the benefits to choosing an integrated solution.
Deciding what is right for your business should be an informed decision. Making sure the products you have chosen work together is even more critical. If all is well, you should never have to think about how different functions are interacting. This should be the goal. One management program might be more comfortable, and you might like a unique feature on a different security program. Chances are they will work fine together, but keep in mind the benefits of an integrated solution when weighing your decision. It might just be the best for you in the long run.
Joe Burt is the international sales manager for Sentinel Systems Corp., a manufacturer of mini-storage and self-storage software for property management, gate-access security and individual door alarms. Founded in 1976, Sentinel continues to lead the way in self-storage security and software solutions. For more information, call 800.456.9955; visit www.sentinelsystems.com.