January 3, 2024


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Security perspectives 2024: Spencer Marshall of HID Global

With growing anti-social behaviour, staff shortages, increasing regulations as well as continued difficult traditions conditions, 2024 promises to be another challenging year for the fire and security industries. In this short interview series, I talk to six industry leaders from different backgrounds about the main issues they face as we head into 2024.

In the first interview I spoke to Jamie Allam, CEO of installation and integration firm Amthal Fire & Security.

In this feature I speak to Spencer Marshall, Head of Europe at HID Global.

Spencer Marshall, Head of Europe, HID Global

“Four years ago everyone was going into the office who had an office job, but now – post Covid-19 – most companies are adjusting to a hybrid working environment. What we’re trying to do is to help companies adapt to this new way of working.

For example, many companies we work may have a lot of real estate, spending around £150 per square foot per month. Yet they only have occupancy of around 60%. That means they need look at how to manage that space effectively.

Using identity positioning we’re able to triangulate a person’s identity within a building from the physical card readers and the HID Global app installed on their smartphone. This enables companies to see how many people are in the office on a particular day and what facilities they are using.

So, for example, staffing levels and food supplies in the canteen can be optimised depending on demand, or parts of the building can be sub-let completely if they are not being used. This technology also supports life safety because it enables companies to see how many devices, though not necessarily people, are left in the building if there’s a fire.

Whereas once people used plastic cards for access control, now many companies are using digital credentials. The only real difference from an employee’s perspective is they’re using their phone to tap the reader via Bluetooth or NFC wireless technology.

Unlike plastic cards, people are less likely to lose a mobile phone or give it to someone else to use! In terms of cost, there’s really not too much in it. However, larger organisations may benefit from cost savings using digital technology over the long term.

Looking at 2024, we can see a continued interest in sustainability among companies. That’s why we believe mobile access will grow because it doesn’t require plastic cards that end up in landfill. However, if companies do still want a physical card we can provide a sustainably sourced bamboo cards which can be recycled.

With NIS2 coming up, our clients aren’t just looking at our products anymore but also our business practices and how compliant we are with cybersecurity regulations, because ultimately we are storing data for them. Increasingly we are also seeing our mobile credentials being used inside smart building apps.

This could be for automation such as ensuring the lights come on when you enter a room. Or one really interesting application is where sensors work out how much CO2 is in a room and combine with the air conditioning to pull in more fresh air if levels get too high in order to increase worker productivity!


Free Download: The Video Surveillance Report 2023

Discover the latest developments in the rapidly-evolving video surveillance sector by downloading the 2023 Video Surveillance Report. Over 500 responses to our survey, which come from integrators to consultants and heads of security, inform our analysis of the latest trends including AI, the state of the video surveillance market, uptake of the cloud, and the wider economic and geopolitical events impacting the sector!

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