Slow adoption of technology in the security sector due to lack of awareness and expertise: Industry players, Singapore News & Top Stories

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SINGAPORE – Private sector security buyers are avoiding results-based contracts (CBOs) due to a lack of awareness and expertise in the field, some industry players have said.

CBOs focus on outputs and expected outcomes rather than labor requirements. They are different from traditional labor-based contracts, where a fixed number of security personnel are deployed.

Thus, CBOs can offer innovative solutions that integrate technology, as well as redesign of tasks and processes, to improve productivity and safety outcomes.

“What is missing is a more targeted approach because, although there has been pressure in the media and elsewhere, many private organizations are simply not aware (of what CBOs can do for them). ), “said Dex Yuan, director of Security 4.0, a security training and consulting firm.

“We demand a coordinated effort from the government, security associations and the union, rather than individual actions.”

He was speaking to The Straits Times on the sidelines of the Results-Based Contracts conference at the Marina Bay Sands Expo and Convention Center on Friday, November 26.

The event was part of a three-day mega-exhibition, Architecture and Building Services 2021, which opened on November 24. The exhibition returned after a two-year hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Another problem cited was the lack of expertise and the fact that clients are not yet convinced of the merits of CBOs.

Mr. Derek Chew, Managing Director of FormTeam Consultancy, which has been using OBCs since early 2020, said: “We had to convince not only the teams and internal operations managers, but also the customers that the OBCs were working …

“With the help of government grants … buyer and seller do not have to bear the full cost of implementation and upgrade (involved).”

In the keynote speech at the conference on Friday, Minister of State for Home Affairs Desmond Tan cited FormTeam as a promising example.

The company uses technology to manage 24-hour command centers and visitor management systems, and some senior security officers at sites under its jurisdiction have body-worn cameras.

Staff can monitor multiple condominiums at the same time via CCTV cameras from a central command center.

Video analytics and trigger wires that fire if a perimeter is breached help the company monitor premises such as commercial buildings, warehouses, hospitals and football clubs.

“The FormTeam experience illustrates how it is possible for large and small players to improve your processes, optimizing workforce at potentially lower costs in the long run, without compromising safety,” said M Tan to conference attendees.

With the new processes in place, FormTeam, which has 200 employees, has seen productivity gains of over 80%, with agents spending less time on manual tasks. It also saved on labor costs as its current number of agents can be deployed to different locations, if not more.

Tan said the government intends to “move towards a 100% adoption rate of CBOs over the next few years.”

A security sector survey conducted by the Home Office last year showed that seven in ten service buyers plan to adopt CBOs in the next two years.

While Mr Tan said it was “very encouraging,” he also noted that more buyers have said they will do so when they are more familiar with what these contracts entail.

Speaking at the conference, Mr. Yuan of Security 4.0 noted that with the salaries of security officers expected to increase from next year, companies should take more concrete steps to adopt CBOs.

Under the progressive salary model, private security guards will see their salaries increase by 6.6% on average from 2022 to 2028.

On the positive side, higher salaries can motivate staff to upgrade their skills and embrace technology, he said.

Friday’s conference also saw the Association of Certified Security Agencies launch a step-by-step guide to CBOs.

In addition, next year, the Security Association Singapore plans to launch a results-based online bidding generator and repository called OBX.

“This will provide an easy-to-use platform that will help buyers make the leap to CBOs,” Mr. Tan said.


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