Several of the industry's leading distributors offer the latest products and opportunities, technological and market challenges, and updates on the goods and services they offer.
Like the agile, accurate and fast teams of the NASCAR circuit, the wholesale distributors of security provide the products and services so that the value-added resellers, distributors and integrators follow the road to victory.
The wholesale distribution plays a fundamental role in the security channel. As the breadth and scope of the industry continues to expand, so does the role of the wholesale distributor. While distribution partners are expected to provide comprehensive product offerings in all technology categories, they are also tasked with delivering a large number of other goods and services.
The list is long and covers training and technical support, system design services, quick and easy product acquisition, same-day and on-site delivery, flexible credit terms, administration of e-commerce operations services and / or e-commerce operations, vetting new products, inventory management, and much more.
In essence, providing a superior value proposition to the distributor and integrator's customers is as important to a distributor as it is to providing the products they need.
Being a true partner also means continuing to maintain the line by selling exclusively to resellers and not breaking the channel by allowing end users to buy directly.
SSI He registered with several of the industry's top distributors who subscribe to those principles. The questions in this roundtable for wholesale distributors were: Tracey Boucher, vice president, supplier services, ScanSource; Mike Burrell, vice president of sales and marketing, The Systems Depot; Dave McClary, strategist in the physical security category, security business unit, Ingram Micro; and Sal LoSchiavo, vice president of sales, network and security solutions, Jenne.
They offer information on the latest products and opportunities, technological and market challenges, and updates on the goods and services they have prepared to help security distributors and systems integrators today. A List of selected wholesale distributors. Follow the discussion.
How do you establish distributor / integrator relationships so that you trust product recommendations and advice?
TRACEY BOUCHER: We invest heavily to make sure we are trusted advisors to our partners. Our team conducts extensive training to ensure that we know the technology inside and out, and we pass on that knowledge to our partners through training, seminars and resources. We believe that the more resources we can offer, the more successful our partners will be.
MIKE BURRELL: We train and educate our in-depth sales people about our suppliers and their key products. Our customers appreciate the fact that we also have account representatives and technical representatives who have experience in installing those products. This is key in building trust. We also use our strong relationships with our suppliers and incorporate them when we provide a customer in a new line of products or company.
SAL LOSCHIAVO: We keep it simple. In Jenne, we apply a very basic model in the construction of long-term relationships. We create credibility by providing a high level service and quick response. We emphasize the development of relationships and partnership based on integrity and honesty. Equally important, we have trained and informed video security team members who know the business and provide immediate value.
What categories of products and technologies are the hottest at this time?
BURRELL: Within our customer base, your surveillance, access control and interactive security. These product categories are making breakthroughs and improvements at an impressive rate. What are the main products in these categories? The products that produce an RMR flow have always been the focus of our customers. With recent advances in AI video to interactive ringtones, distributors can secure additional RMR flows using these new innovations.
LoSCHIAVO: The first three are analytical, VaaS / SaaS and cybersecurity. Analytics is being stimulated by the end user's need for videos and actionable data. Therefore, you do not have to spend days looking for videos, events, people, LPR problems and many other things that drive your business at an abundant cost per work hour. Public safety situations, such as mass shooters and bombings, are driving the analysis to improve and produce more actionable data.
It is also being driven by the end user who wants to be able to earn money with their investment with heat maps and actionable data that they can sell to their management. As for VaaS / SaaS, the [lower] the initial cost to the end user is driving it and the way that technology produces new products so quickly. The compression capacity of H.265 and the smart codecs are reducing the bandwidth demand, which makes it a much more viable solution these days with a T1 line.
DAVE McCLARY: The best selling products are highly versatile mini IP dome cameras with varifocal, indoor / outdoor and low light lenses. On the access control side, we see a large volume and continuous growth of credentials and card readers, which are common to almost all physical access control systems. Inventory planning and the anticipation of customer demand is fundamental with these high volume sales products.
From a technological point of view, hosted solutions are increasing, reflecting an evolution in the preferred mode of consumption of some customers. There is a lot of enthusiasm for the AI video analysis that responds to the demands of situational awareness and actionable information. But video is not the only technology capable of contributing. We are seeing high levels of interest in multi-technology surveillance devices that monitor invisible conditions such as sound, air quality and the presence of gases. Meanwhile, Bluetooth technology allows cost-effective deployment of real-time location services for assets and personnel.
In which product categories and / or markets should the distributors and security integrators focus more and why?
LoSCHIAVO: Wired and wireless networks; In general, it is not the cameras that fail, but the network in which the cameras are executed. As we implement more 4K, execute additional analysis and improve remote access, the security integrator must understand and guarantee smooth traffic through the customer's network and adequate storage capacities.
Also, as I mentioned earlier, VaaS / SaaS. Since end users are more price conscious, VaaS / SaaS is an excellent choice for most of the market, those with less than 64 cameras. These customers have budget limitations and have to do more with less daily. This approach is very convincing if it can offer a solution that meets the needs of the end user at a fraction of the initial cost, along with the elimination of video management.
BURRELL: When I started in the industry, I focused mainly on security. It seems that the focus has shifted to providing data to the customer. With today's advances in personal technology, we have access to data we did not have 10 years ago. Users are now looking for this in all aspects of the systems with which they interact. The distributors that provide this level of information to their customers are the ones experiencing the fastest growth.
McCLARY: The need for managed physical security services represents an opportunity for growth and possible relief from the pressures of marketing costs. End users can get most of the profits from a competitive offer to provide and install the system. But if the maintenance of the system is treated as a contractual obligation, instead of a way of differentiating from the competition, there is likely to be dissatisfaction.
Most end users need help to manage their security systems, keeping them updated and functioning optimally. They should know about possible system failures in advance and should receive information about new features and firmware versions. Integrators who can fill that gap can generate a recurring revenue stream and increase customer dependence.
What value-added services does your company offer to the channel?
McCLARY: The technical rating of the partner is a fundamental value proposition for Ingram Micro. For our reseller customers, we offer a range of technical and market training services, as well as professional design and implementation services. In the physical security market, we support security integrators with access to products and IT experience, while supporting IT resellers with pre- and post-sale professional services. In many cases, we facilitate the collaboration of projects between traditional integrators and IT resellers. The intention is to allow Ingram customers to expand their existing end-user relationships to new products and services, including technologies and geographies outside of their core business.
BURRELL: Flexibility; We are a private company that can make decisions and exceptions in a timely manner. We can work closely with our distributing partners to help them quote and secure businesses that may be outside of their comfort zone. We achieve this by offering consulting from the design process to determine how to finance the project. We want our distributors to be successful as it is key to our success.
LoSCHIAVO: Jenne offers training and education through the Jenne University. Certification courses are offered on the site, as well as in locations throughout the country. Jenne also offers numerous webinars in partnership with leading industry manufacturers whose products we distribute. The staging of security cameras is also offered to ensure that all preliminary configurations, licenses and labels for product shipments have been completed, allowing resellers and integrators to quickly install systems on their customers' networks, or as an independent unit to help save time and programming resources on delivery. We can configure camera IP addresses and fill in spreadsheets; apply a name to the camera; label the shipping boxes with the appropriate locations; assign passwords to cameras; and also perform other custom programming.