Jason Boyce, Strategic Business Development Manager at Gallagher Security (Europe), discusses the security industry’s opportunities, trends and challenges in 2018…
Tell us about your company, products and services…
Gallagher security solutions protect what’s important to universities. Access control, intruder alarms, perimeter security and business policy execution are integrated with powerful software to create a smarter, more cost-effective way to operate. Gallagher solutions give peace of mind with an intelligent security solution designed to ensure business continuity, create efficiencies, protect assets and keep people safe.
What have been the biggest challenges the education sector has faced over the past 12 months?
Duty of Care. In a world of blame culture every organisation has a duty of care to not only staff but visitors and contractors. In the university sector the duty of care for students is of the highest priority with particular focus on student accommodation where a management system, such as Gallagher Command Centre, allows staff to check on the well-being of students by monitoring the use of their access card. This is particularly important when students are from overseas or under the age of 18, where one of the safeguarding requirements is that the University can monitor their whereabouts on a daily basis. This can be difficult to achieve when there are lots of students, but Gallagher Command Centre can easily confirm the time and location of resident’s last door access, providing peace of mind that students who may be uncontactable are in fact on site.
And what have been the biggest opportunities?
Electronic security is uniquely positioned to solve the challenges in previous question.
What is the biggest priority for the education sector in 2018?
Business Continuity. Threat landscape is constantly changing. Everything from radicalisation to international cyber crime, loss of IP to competition for students.
What are the main trends you are expecting to see in the market in 2018?
Mobility, everything is on the mobile phone. Traditional access control and the use of tokens needs to migrate to mobile technology. In addition the use of readers to be registered in a location will move towards hands-free with the use of mobile phones. This does, however, raise concerns around privacy.
What technology is going to have the biggest impact on the market this year?
Mobile and Cloud. They are offering more and more benefits but with this comes more vulnerabilities and now the focus is on preventing these vulnerabilities.
In 2020 we’ll all be talking about…?
In 2020 the University landscape will have changed completely. Universities are fast becoming international businesses and the UK is at the centre of this. Local education establishments (colleges and Universities) will join forces to allow for the growth required without the need for constant expansion of land and buildings.
Which person in, or associated with, the education sector would you most like to meet?
Sir Lenny Henry, Chancellor of Birmingham City University.
What’s the most surprising thing you’ve learnt about the education sector?
With all the current doom and gloom the sector is growing from strength to strength.
You go to the bar at the Education Forum – what’s your tipple of choice?
Gin and Tonic.
What’s the most exciting thing about your job?
Technology is constantly moving forward.
And what’s the most challenging?
Keeping up with technology.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
Only be 80% capable in your role – the remaining 20% keeps you focused.
Peaky Blinders or The Crown?
FAR too busy for television…