Hospitality Security Blog Series – Part 3

In parts one and two of this series, we presented an overview of the hospitality security industry; we explained its background and threat landscape, then described the benefits of using surveillance and video intelligence technologies as security solutions in this field. In part three, we’ll summarize the first half of a study commissioned by Oncam that identifies the current threats within the market and provides a guideline of best practices to help hospitality decision-makers mitigate risks.

Professor Alexandros Paraskevas, Chair in Hospitality Management at the University of West London, conducted the survey with assistance from the International Centre for Hotel and Resort Management. Top-tier hotel security professionals answered a series of questions, sharing their perspective on the industry in general and details on internal practices and strategies.

The first half of the respondents’ opinions centered around security buying decisions. Decision-making with regard to capital investments is complex in the hospitality industry, and often includes a number of key players, such as the hotel owner, portfolio manager, asset manager, third-party operator and the brand.

While the hotel owner is generally the person who makes the final decision, it’s important for the hotel’s security directors to educate themselves on the technology being implemented and the emerging trends within the industry. Many participants also listed the IT department as a key decision-maker because of the networked nature of today’s video surveillance and security solutions investments.

A variety of key drivers influence these decisions, starting primarily with budget. Many hotels struggle with allocating sufficient funds for security measures, and participants in the study believe that security investment is typically a “reluctant spend.” Investments tend to be made because they are a “must” – either a brand standard that cannot be waived or a legal requirement.

For many of the respondents, it’s a matter of mindset. Owners and managers who realize the importance of employee and guest safety, and overall security are keener to discuss investment in these areas. Additionally, corporate pressure and the reduction of insurance premiums from less exposure to risk are two contributing factors for investment in security technology.

Survey participants also cited a more recent trend of security executives presenting the investment as benefitting more than just security; video data gathered through surveillance systems, for example, can have additional uses that span several departments including business operations and marketing.

The second half of the respondents’ opinions described various barriers to adoption and security convergence. In the final part of this series, we’ll explain their concerns and suggest how they can be addressed with innovative technology. To read the complete details of the study and the full white paper, visit here.

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