Following his recent appointment as Product Manager with IDIS Europe, we caught up with John Psyllos to find out what to expect next from IDIS.
How did your appointment with IDIS come about?
For me it was time for a new challenge. I had seen the promotions ahead of the DirectIP™ launch last year and IDIS looked like an exciting business to be part of. I visited the IDIS stand at IFSEC 2013 and the buzz was tangible. Taking a quick demo, I immediately realised it wasn’t hype; they had an outstanding solution with DirectIP. From the perspective of a systems integrator, I could immediately see that DirectIP would significantly reduce installation time and hassle, while it was incredibly powerful in terms of performance. Luckily for me, I’d worked with Greg Kulesza, IDIS Technical Manager before, so earlier this year I gave him a call, and with continued growth plans, IDIS were soon hiring for a Product Manager, so it made perfect sense to apply. I think you need to truly believe in a product in order to promote it and that’s what this opportunity presented.
What makes you ideally suited to the role?
Coming from a large systems integrator, I obviously have a lot of experience implementing and maintaining high end IP-based electronic security systems. In particular, large surveillance roll outs within the corporate enterprise space. So I understand the challenges facing both installers and the end user customer, in terms of the performance and technical specification they need for mission critical security operations. So I’m ideally placed to educate that audience on how DirectIP can help address those issues from plug-and-play installation, streamlined maintenance through to performance, integration and reliability. By the same token, this also helps me support our product road map to ensure we continue to lead the industry across those areas.
DirectIP was developed with convenience and flexibility as well as performance top of mind. To support that it has every element and component an integrator or installer needs to build a full-HD and networked surveillance system, including network accessories, and, more recently a range of security-designed monitors. Yet IDIS is not a company to stand still. We want to extend our DirectIP offering in the corporate enterprise sectors.
In the last few months, we’ve announced integration with Maxxess eFusion™, SureView Immix® and Lenel OnGuard®. This integration delivers DirectIP functionality through single security management platforms to both enhance resilience through event and video correlation while increasing operator effectiveness, which in turn streamlines operations to reduce cost. It also helps customers integrate their legacy CCTV and develop a DirectIP migration path rather than needing to rip and replace everything immediately. It’s increasing our flexibility and lowering the cost of ownership through this type of product development and integration that I’m looking to extend with DirectIP.
We’ve also embarked on some exciting new technology partnerships for ANPR, point of sale and facial recognition, so expect some more announcements as these progress.
In addition to the product management, I’m also supporting pre-sales activities, technical support and customer training, so I’ve definitely hit the ground running.
Why is integration so important to the industry and IDIS?
I see it as two main factors; to enhance security and make security operations more efficient. There’s no single vendor out there offering best of breed across all disciplines including intruder, fire, access, surveillance, etc. Most end users today have a complex jumble of disparate and proprietary systems and that cause gaps in security. If anyone has been in a control room with disparate fire alarms, intruder, CCTV, and access alarms going off, it can range from alarms simply being ignored, right through to chaos with operators jumping or running from screen to screen as they try, and often fail, to verify each alarm.
Of course, integration means different things to different parties within the industry. On the sophisticated end you have Physical Integrated Management Systems (PSIM) that offers seamless integration with rules based engines offering up standard operating procedures to enforce compliance, but that’s out of reach for a majority of customers in terms of cost and complexity compared to their level of risk.
If you take our integration with Maxxess eFusion, for example. For the most part, customers want to centralise and correlate all those aforementioned alarms, while still retaining product choice across their systems. In doing so, operators can manage these alarms from an eFusion central platform with DirectIP giving them the ability to visually verify those alerts in HD. For most organisations, this provides the opportunity to increase resilience by closing those security gaps through the simplification of control room procedures, which in turn makes them more efficient and better able to meet compliance requirements. And today, many security departments are being asked to do far more without increasing manpower together with showing greater value to the wider organisation. By streamlining operations, we free up security officers to take on more tasks. Maxxess eFusion also offers a wide range of functionality from a powerful access control, through to time and attendance capabilities extending customer choice and giving them a future proof solution.
At the same time, this straight forward approach to integration can eliminate the security industry’s age old rip and replace mentality. Larger organisations need a migration path for upgrading their legacy CCTV. Integration allows them to efficiently extend the life of older systems, while upgrading more critical areas without having to replace everything in one go, which alleviates cost and project complexity.
That’s why at IDIS we have a product roadmap that sees us integrating with unified security management platforms like eFusion to offer this level of integration increasingly required by end user customers
Integration is definitely one that we’ve already discussed, and I think we will continue to see this debated at length within the industry.
On the other hand you have a whole swathe of installers out there who have really struggled with the migration from analogue to IP. Many had their fingers burned by over promises and what turned out to be complex and lengthy implementations. With DirectIP we like to say it does exactly what it says on the tin. It offers true plug-and-play installation, even for multi-site roll outs, while delivering industry-leading performance and reliability. We call it IP without the PC. Installers don’t need to hire IT-savvy engineers or have staff complete extensive, and often, expensive training. So that allows our installer partners to go out there and create new sales opportunity they might have otherwise missed.
Cost of ownership is another. One of the biggest complaints we hear is end users being tied into expensive license fees, so we simply eliminated them. DirectIP comes with free bundled video management software and together with low power consumption we really are offering a far lower cost of ownership compared with competitive systems.
What’s next for IDIS?
Definitely expect more of the same. We’ll want to continue to lead the market by extending our camera range and bringing new features and functionality on line, while simultaneously developing integrations with third parties systems and technologies. Our strategy is to also further develop our DirectIP offering for core vertical markets where surveillance is a mission critical aspect of security.
We’re continuing to grow our global footprint and invest in local infrastructure here in Europe, in the Middle East and in the Americas. It really is fantastic to have joined the business at such a dynamic and exciting time. We’re participating in an increasing number of industry events, so with only four month’s to go I can only urge Intersec 2015 visitors in January to come and meet the IDIS team and find out more in Dubai!
To find out more about IDIS visit the website here – www.idisglobal.com