Security is vital in commercial spaces but finding a company capable of handling these requirements is not always easy. Kastle was born out of a need for these services in Washington DC, but in the last fifty years has grown to serve a much broader base of customers. We take a look to see how the team has achieved such success in this issue of Corporate Vision.
In 1972, a group of commercial real estate owners in the Washington DC area had a major problem. They needed an outsourcing solution that could manage their security, so that they could focus on the needs of their specific businesses. When Kastle Systems was launched, it was meet this specific market need, but over the years it has grown and evolved significantly.
The aim of the organization has not changed, and neither has the model which the team uses. Like all things, however, technology plays a much bigger role in the operation of the firm. Cloud computing has enabled a reach that goes far beyond the limits of Washington DC, spreading across 47 states and Australia. While the team are still committed to the community which brought them into life, they now serve over 40,000 businesses in a range of industries. The largest market that the team works in remains commercial properties, where Kastle Systems is responsible for securing both the buildings and thousands of tenant office spaces within them, but they also operate within sectors such as residential multifamily, enterprise businesses, education and construction.
When a client takes on Kastle Systems, they take on a firm which is able to provide Security-as-a-Service. This guarantees an end-to-end approach that encompasses every need a client might have with the team taking direct responsibility to their security package and operations. This ownership has proven key to the team’s success. As a firm that is contracted to work for a client, they ensure that as far as possible everyone is available in house.
The most obvious way in which this has proven to be a boon is in the way that the team control their own technology stack. This means that they directly deliver the end user experience. No two organizations require the same support in the same way, and by controlling this, the team can tailor their service and support to the last detail. This means that clients receive consistently high service in a way that is unique to each client.
Clients large and small turn to the Kastle Systems team for support, with their reputation for providing excellent security protection now known across the country. It has become clear that while the option of building up a staff with the expertise to protect property is present, it is far easier to outsource to experts in the field. Instead of simply selling a system to a business in the form of software and hardware, the Kastle Systems team provide a completely integrated service. Not only do they design and install the systems, they are always on hand to monitor and maintain them in the long term.
Competitors within the industry do sell systems that companies can use and run themselves, but this often leads to operational challenges as the needs of the security industry change over time. Beyond the simple challenges of staff turnover is the need to train staff in new skills and to ensure that the machinery remains fully operational. This usually creates problems where a series of outside vendors must be consulted before any progress can be made. By working with Kastle Systems, this strain on the system is removed entirely and business owners can focus purely on the operation of their enterprise.
Enabling customers to focus on what they do best has guided many of the decisions that the team has taken. Recently, the team have developed KastlePark, a new operating system tied to Kastle access control for the building. The management of parking lots has traditionally been taken by third party parking vendors, but many of these cut corners and run poor operations. This reflects badly on the owner of the parking lot.
KastlePark allows owner operations to take back control of the complex system, making the parking lot an extension of the building system. Instead of being two separate systems, they are integrated into a cohesive whole. All tenant usage and payments, at the company and individual level, reside within the same master tenant directory that manages building access and lease details and billing, all-in-one. For clients, the result is a better, healthier business that is run from one place.
This venture was inspired by a need created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Many parking vendors simply went under during the crisis. For the team at Kastle Systems, business has been booming. With remote work mandated, offices have remained empty, and the need for the best possible security has risen sharply. Thanks to the technological innovations from the team, the firm’s remote security-as-a-service has been an enormous success, with a great year of growth for the firm.
As companies return to the workplace, the team have taken extra provisions. They have enhanced their access control operation to implement health screening protocols to make the return to work, and the ongoing operation of the workplace, a healthier and secure environment. This feature configures Kastle Access Control systems to integrate with the various mainstream coronavirus testing methods, so that daily test results are implemented instantly into physical access rights at the credential level for the individuals. By implementing existing technology with new processes, the team hope to make the return to work as smooth and safe as possible.
The growth seen over the last year means more staff are needed to run the systems that make Kastle Systems great. When it comes to finding staff who are the right fit for Kastle Systems, the expectation is that they join a team who “own and deliver” security for the customer, and anything less is a failure. This approach is one which demands high standards and therefore attracts some of the industry’s most exceptional people. They think nothing of going above and beyond for their clients at every stage.
As a result, the team are committed to going above and beyond for their staff. While working in the Physical Security service industry, they have made a name for themselves by working with technology. Any innovation that makes life easier, richer and safer is of interest to the team and has allowed them to progress where other clients have stalled. This gives the Kastle Systems team a steeper innovation curve for competitors to follow, but also generates greater preference for their end users where their service becomes an amenity rather than a utility.
Looking ahead, the team are hoping to leverage their open-standards interoperability to provide benefits of scale and efficiency serving more multi-location operations. As buildings become increasingly smart, the team expect to find themselves working in a more flexible environment. As the role of technology becomes clearer, it’s obvious that it will be integrated into the fabric of the building itself. This new reality will make life easier for businesses like Kastle Systems, with their access control, identity management and video surveillance integrated with lighting, HVAC, and even structural infrastructure. It’s a bold new future that the team are preparing to enter, but it is also one for which they are more than prepared.
For further information, please contact Haniel Lynn or visit www.kastle.com