CCTV SURVEILLANCE 101: Total cost of ownership
So, yo want to install a CCTV system? Have you considered the TCO of the system? But what it it?When we purchase surveillance systems it is recommended to consider the total cost of ownership


= purchase cost + life cycle cost + replacement cost.

Purchase costs unfortunately are not the only costs to consider. How complex is the system to setup? Who will provide support after the installation phase is over? How many people are certified to support your chosen system? How easy and quick will it be to get replacements? What are the limits and what are the upgrade paths?

The above are a few questions that should be considered when purchasing an enterprise type surveillance system

Life-cycle costs can also be referred to as running costs. Often end users buy less expensive equipment and end up paying more over the lifespan of the product to keep the product operational. Maintenance costs and fault finding can be reduced with IP-based systems within organisations that have an IT function. The actual cost of a surveillance system not functioning can be immeasurable.

Replacement costs or upgrade costs are often overlooked and are one the biggest cost benefits of using open platform surveillance solutions that use commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) equipment, particularly where a client would like to take advantage of technological changes or has a dynamic growing site. That said, many boxed solutions often meet the requirements of smaller installations that do not have in-house skills, do not have a growing site and have a static requirement from technology that will not change over the life-cycle of the equipment.

Life cycle costs are really a debatable issue with many variables, build quality and installation quality are two common variables that can shorten the useful life-cycle of a surveillance system.

From the above explanation, it is apparent that there is much more than deciding that you are going to have a CCTV surveillance or any security system. Evaluate your position and ask yourself whether you want to take up every cost that comes with  ensuring utmost performance of the system. It may be wiser to outsource the service than just own the system from the word go.

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