Once the preserve of high security environments, CCTV is now everywhere, from small newsagents to offices, factories, leisure facilities and pretty much anywhere else you can think of. With prices for hardware and wiring that have fallen dramatically over recent years, you can get a good quality CCTV system for less than the price of a holiday.
But how do you achieve a quality system at a sensible price?
The benefits of CCTV
As a security system, CCTV can act as a valuable deterrent; can provide live monitoring to enable you to take action as and where required; and can be used for evidential purposes. According to recent reports, CCTV surveillance is useful in about 65% of crimes where CCTV footage was available. Although CCTV is primarily for security purposes, it can also be beneficial for surveillance for health and safety and monitoring business processes.
But it’s not just these benefits that have driven the widespread adoption of CCTV; it’s also its affordability.
So how much does it cost to install CCTV?
A CCTV camera can be available for as little as £25 from several online suppliers, but it is unlikely to be suitable if you are looking for quality business surveillance. Do you really want a system that’s super cheap but that doesn’t actually meet your needs? We’ve all seen those terrible grainy images from CCTV cameras that make it virtually impossible to see what’s going on, let alone identify anyone. You might as well stick a couple of dummy cameras on the wall for all the good such a system brings!
A quality system that’s cost-effective is what most businesses want. A fully accredited security company such as STANLEY Security can fully install a CCTV system from £999 and will include four cameras and a Network Video Recorder (NVR), which is suitable for small business premises.
So how do you achieve a quality system at a sensible price?
Here’s the key cost saving factors to consider:
What CCTV system should I buy for my premisis?
Jump on the bandwagon (well, the bandwidth actually!) with IP based cameras.
CCTV systems once required their own cable network, which added considerably to the cost of the system in terms of the cable cost itself and the labour to install it. Plus, it could be disruptive to the business and might even mean interiors required redecoration. The development of IP based CCTV systems has changed this and made CCTV installations much faster, easier and cheaper as the signals are run through a site’s existing IP network. Obviously there has to be enough bandwidth on the network, but this generally isn’t an issue for a small to medium sized system.
In addition, many CCTV cameras come with wireless connectivity, using Wi-Fi to transmit signals to the security system, ditching cabling altogether (although power cables are still required).
Biting the bullet – Get yourself a reasonable "Bullet" or "Dome"camera
CCTV cameras have become increasingly sophisticated and there is now a wide choice, depending on purpose, location and budget. For most businesses, high definition cameras with multiple features and functions, which come with a high price tag, are unnecessary. Standard bullet or dome cameras, which are relatively small and inexpensive, will often suffice. They can be wall, ceiling or pole mounted, for both indoor and outdoor use.
If you need 24-hour surveillance, then a further cost saving can be made by using a day/night camera. Standard cameras tend to work either in daytime or night-time, so you would need one of each where round the clock surveillance is required. By investing in a single day/night camera you can reduce the cost. This type of camera is a bit more expensive, but not as expensive as buying, installing and maintaining two cameras.
Another useful cost-saving tip is to go with a static camera where the view is fixed, rather than a pan, tilt and zoom (PTZ) one where the camera can be moved around. Do you really need to move the camera around and, more to the point, will you actually do it? Most businesses don’t.
Why buy a CCTV system?
Peace of mind
The need for CCTV systems is greater than ever before. The number of police officers patrolling our streets has reduced, total recorded offences are up by 14%, as reported by The Independent.
The biggest and most recognised benefit is that CCTV cameras are an excellent deterrent to burglars. A burglar seeing multiple cameras may decide that it’s easier to move elsewhere.
Reduced insurance premiums
Your insurance costs will be lower! With a security camera system in place, insurance companies deem you to be less of a risk, which means the price of your insurance may decrease too.
Remotely monitor your premises from your device
A CCTV system provides people with a sense of security and reassurance in high crime rate areas. Many systems can securely connected to the internet , meaning they can be viewed and monitored from your smartphone or tablet.
What else should you consider when implementing security for your business?
Monitoring & Recording
In most instances you won’t need a dedicated monitor and can instead use existing computer monitors to view CCTV footage saving on space and additional costs.
For recording, there are a variety of options available which are far more cost-effective and easier to use than the old VHS tape based methods. For small CCTV systems, Digital Video Recorders (DVR) are ideal as they store camera feed for days or weeks. There’s the upfront equipment cost, but then that’s it. The other main alternative, growing in popularity is IP-based video recording solutions which can capture everything that happens throughout your facility for months, storing footage remotely in the Cloud. The STANLEY Security Video Cloud is one such IP based system - a fully managed cloud video surveillance solution, delivering an end-to-end video management system that is simple to deploy and easy to use. There’s no equipment cost, just a monthly fee.
Where you require "Out of Hours" or 24hr reactive monitoring, the need of additional staff can be reduced by using one of our fully accredited Monitoring Centres - STANLEY Security, is Category 2 NSI Gold Standard BS5979 accredited and has specially trained operators who are able to react immediately to any incident presented to them.
What options are available for purchasing a CCTV system?
Traditionally, security systems have been purchased outright by a company and then a separate maintenance contract begins. However, STANLEY Security can offer a unique finance scheme, which provides you with a modern security system on a rental basis. This provides an affordable means of installing or upgrading a complete security system and removes the need to justify and raise significant capital outlay in a depreciating asset. It’s also great for cash flow as you know exactly what you’re paying each month.
What happens to my old security system when I purchase a new one?
If you have an existing security system in place, the security company buys back your existing equipment at its residual or market value and takes over that security system (regardless of whether they supplied it or not); they upgrade it to an agreed value to ensure it meets your needs and incorporates the latest security technology; then they hire it back to you on evenly spread, manageable payment terms. Depending on the package you opt for, you could also include a maintenance contract and a monitoring package, all with one agreed regular payment scheme for total peace of mind.
If you’re not reaping the benefits of CCTV due to the cost implications, then think again: CCTV is not only popular but is now also highly affordable.
STANLEY Security designs, installs, maintains and upgrades a wide range of CCTV solutions to meet businesses' specific needs and budgets.