Excellence = having the right people in the right places

01 Apr 2022
BY Dave Salisbury

There’s a lot of trust involved when you work in the security and surveillance industry. Engineers and technicians on site have to understand the inner workings of a premises to make sure that the integrated security system commissioned by the customer is perfect for their needs. That means learning a lot about the business an

d the site; about access codes, network, control panel location and of course where all the CCTV cameras and PIR sensors are located.

Then there’s maintaining the high level of customer service that your business is known for. You have to trust that your team is representing you well across all aspects of the business, from on-location installations to back office support and project management.

All wrapped up that’s a set of specific requirements that needs careful recruiting to maintain trust and standards.

Bringing on new folk

How do you select

the right people for the company, what’s the process?

For us, it’s about defining the role as clearly as possible and positioning the company accurately so we get the right level of experience for the role and the right cultural fit for the business. We’re a very driven, but also very supportive company. It’s not as clear as working 9 to 5, swiping in and out, and trying to fit all personal appointments into your lunch break or out of hours. If someone needs time off, that’s fine! We believe that if you give a lot, you get a lot – it’s balance that works for us and it’s important that our new starters fit into that ethos. We have to be flexible in our approach to work because that’

s what our customers expect of us.

When it comes to trust, our customers don’t have anything to worry about. All of our engineers are screened by the National Security Screening Agency (NSSA) who, as they say themselves, make sure that potential employees are of the highest calibre and integrity. The NSSA checks also include the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks that will expose any criminal convictions.

As an extra layer of protection, we also have non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) – or confidentiality agreements – in place for all of our staff because of their access to highly confidential customer information. It’s vitally important to us that our customers have faith in our ability and trust in our people – if our recruitment process is rigorous because of that, so be it.

Attitude counts – nurturing talent

Historically, most of our engineers come from an electrical background and have undertaken in-depth training with the manufacturers we use. They would normally have a personal interest in electrical circuits and systems so it’s been really interesting in the past couple of years to see that more traditional approach being surpassed by engineers with an interest in IT, or that have computer-based or network knowledge.

Whatever their interest or approach, they all have a willingness to learn and attend training courses if they do have a gap in their skills. They’re multi-disciplined and like to keep up with advances in systems and equipment that will help them progress their career. Part of that is having a detailed skills matrix to manage and monitor existing sills and plan for further development.

Zicam has an excellent 25-year track record of employee retention and that’s largely down to the way we nurture talent. If someone has the willingness to learn and wants to be successful in the business then that’s worth investing in helping them achieve their aspirations. I started out as an engineer at Zicam, progressed to Project Manager and am now proud to be its Managing Director and that’s because the business invested in me – now I can do the same.

People are the most important investment a business can make. They represent the company and fly the flag for excellence and commitment. It’s so important to have the right people in the right places to make sure customers get exceptional end-to-end service for their security system installation, and through into their maintenance contract.

Dave Salisbury, Managing Director, Zicam Integrated Security Limited.

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