Founder,, Sonitrol of South Central Ontario

Author Bio ▼

Colin Bodbyl is the founder of and Chief Technology Officer at Sonitrol of South Central Ontario. He has over 10 years' experience in the security industry specializing in the design and installation of physical security, IP CCTV, video analytics, and access control systems. In 2012 Colin developed to connect with other integrators and end users through his unique video blogs.
June 4, 2013


State of Physical Access Trend Report 2024

How to Sell Surveillance to Small Businesses

I was recently involved in hosting a small, informal training session for one of our local police departments. The goal was to educate some of the officers about new technology, allowing them to make educated recommendations to victims of crime. During the question-and-answer period, one officer told us many managers and business owners were reluctant to explore the idea of surveillance in the workplace. It was not the cost that turned them off but what they feared the cameras would do to office morale.

When speaking directly to potential clients, we often forget all the factors that influence their decision making. Many managers or business owners (especially in small businesses) have employees they need to ensure are happy and feel comfortable at their workplace. The solution is a simple one. While selling to managers or business owners, you need to teach them how to sell surveillance to their staff. Employees often feel surveillance indicates a lack of trust from management. Sometimes it does, but a well-monitored workplace should have the exact opposite effect.

Proving innocence, not guilt
Any internal theft within a small business can be very damaging to the trust among staff members. If cash goes missing and no one is caught or fesses up, management is left wondering which employee committed the crime. Employees are left fearing they will be blamed for something they did not do.

Through the use of surveillance, business owners can see what actually happened. Perhaps they see a stranger sneak into the office and steal the cash without anyone noticing. They may never catch the thief, but at least they now know the culprit was not an employee. At the same time, employees can rest assured that their jobs are safe, and that the trust they have built with their colleagues has not been damaged. Proving people’s innocence is sometimes more important than discovering who is guilty.

It is easy to be distracted by the end goal of apprehending criminals. Business owners are especially prone to this distraction. Though they feel they have the decision-making power, they often feel a responsibility to justify it to their employees. As consultants and salespeople, it is our responsibility to guide our clients through these sometimes difficult decisions.

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June 4, 2013 11:59 am

Hi Colin,
“The goal was to educate some of the officers about new technology.”
Did the new technology include that IP cameras are better, faster, and/or less expensive to own than the alternatives?

June 4, 2013 12:25 pm

It is necessary to educate small business of economic and  business sense of having survelliance technology in place with its benefits as deterrent equipment for enhencing business security networks

June 5, 2013 7:14 am

Proving people’s innocence is sometimes more important than discovering who is guilty.
, I totally agree with you on this. There are lot of advantages of using surveillance cameras, infact with the help crowdsourcing company can catch the guilty also.