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Why There’s No Reason to Offer POTS-Connected Alarm Systems

Security Sales & Integration, by Peter Giacalone · March 24, 2016

Security dealers need to keep up with new technology in order to fulfill their responsibilities to customers, new and old.

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Refusing to update from POTS lines communication puts end users at risk of their alarms alerts not reaching central stations.

Like any other industry or business, it is most essential in the security industry that dealers remain mindful of cutting-edge technology. Having said that, it is equally important that these same leaders and dealers pay very close attention to matters that affect their customers, both positively and negatively.

A customer’s needs and requirements should be as important to management as growing their businesses through adding new customers. The rapid elimination of traditional POTS lines and changes in the technology and methods telephone carriers use to back haul telecommunications traffic is having a profound impact on alarm communications. This effect causes inconsistent communications, which results in signals not received or processed by the monitoring center.

Subscribers depend on the services and expertise that dealers provide. If we as professionals fail in delivering this on a daily basis, the subscribers will migrate away to a company that pays closer attention to their needs. We as an industry offer a host of services, interactions and touches for customer engagement and benefit. These services and touches have grown and continue to grow continually. That’s why there is no reason to continue to offer and support POTS lines connected systems.

POTS lines are a growing issue that is out of control and a bigger problem than ever before. The issue grows because it is much greater than existing subscribers cancelling their landline. It’s the hidden issues of telecommunication companies transporting calls digitally and essentially as VoIP and having the same effect as an end user transferring their landline service to a second- or third-tier VoIP provider, resulting in an inconsistency of alarm signal communication to their central monitoring center.

We have many alternate means of communication as IP connectivity, private radio and cellular. We also have a variety of means for subscribers to stay connected to their systems, such as smartphones, tablets and other connected technologies that continue to keep customers tied to their systems and the services we provide.

Dealers that refuse to handle the POTS lines issue head on and still do not take a proactive approach to mitigating this potentially dangerous undetected issue and attrition accelerator, in my opinion, are negligent and are not providing their subscribers with truthful information. In addition to not being forthcoming with subscribers, they are inviting their competition in to provide these subscribers with this education.

It is essential to communicate the value of the new and comprehensive systems and communications that the industry has to offer. Taking this approach is a valuable and meaningful way to express the necessity of migrating from landline dependency.  Maintaining a structure and philosophy that promotes this will serve as a great component in your arsenal toward maintaining and educating existing customers and earning customers for life.

About the Author
Peter Giacalone is president of Giacalone Associates LLC, an independent security consulting firm providing strategic marketing, operational and sales support planning and structuring to central stations, manufacturers and dealers. He can be contacted at (201) 394-5536 or email peter@petergiacalone.com.

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