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Security Officer of the Year 2020

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The Sunstates Security Officer of the Year award is always exciting to announce.  For 2020, we had 17 nominations from across the country.  While they are all terrific, hard-working employees, only one can receive the honor of being the Security Officer of the Year.  Below are the winner and runner-up from 2020.

Security Officer of the Year:

Security Officer of the Year 2020 Sunstates Security CompanyCharles Launderville, Patrol Sergeant: Southport, NC.

On Friday, October 25, 2019, at approximately 1640 hours, the main gate monitored a 911 medical call for an unconscious male. The male was riding a bicycle when he collapsed after having an apparent heart attack. The main gate dispatched a patrol to the location. Sgt. Chuck Launderville responded to the call and was on the scene in minutes. Upon arrival, a member of the Fire Department was on scene and was preparing to begin CPR. The male had no pulse and was not breathing at this time. Sgt. Launderville returned to his vehicle and retrieved the AED. Sgt. Launderville connected the AED, analyzed him, and it suggested shock. A shock was delivered, and CPR was resumed. After a series of CPR actions, Sgt. Launderville examined the patient once again with the AED, and a shock was suggested. A second shock was delivered to the patient, and CPR continued until the arrival of the EMS. Before transporting the patient to the hospital, he was breathing and had a pulse.

He was in a severe condition for the next several weeks, and his outcome was unclear. The security team stayed in constant contact with the family as to his progress, and after several weeks of care, he was able to return home. The patient requested to meet the officer that saved his life. It was a very emotional meeting, and they have stayed in contact to this day.

Officer of the Year Runner-Up:

Denver CO, Security Officer- Sunstates Security CompanySonia Miller, Security Officer:  Denver, CO.

On March 11, 2019, Sonia was at the end of her shift and her fellow officer was there to relieve her.  Returning from her final patrol, the other officer was acting a bit out of sorts.  After observing him, Sonia quickly identified the symptoms of a stroke.  She did not hesitate to contact 911, and due to her swift thinking, he was able to receive the necessary care.  It was later made known that the officer had experienced a severe stroke and would require extensive medical assistance.  Had Sonia not been as observant, she may have left the site without concern, but being the vigilant, exceptional officer she is, she was able to save the life of her fellow officer.

Both Sunstates officers received a plaque and a check for their incredible work.

Congrats and a big thanks to not only these officers, but to all our Security Officers.  Without your dedication and drive, we would not be the company we are today.

To see more stories about our amazing team be sure to follow us on Facebook for up to date mentions regarding our officers providing excellent service.

Safety Considerations During Social Unrest

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Safety Considerations During Social Unrest, Sunstates Security CompanyOver the past week, many cities across the country have experienced heightened social unrest, protesting, and rioting.  Some peaceful protests starting in daylight hours turn into violence and rioting after dark. These types of gatherings present potential safety threats to both people and property. Other challenges associated with mass gatherings may include blocked roadways, disruptions of business schedules, and dangers to individuals in uniform.

During times of emergency, Sunstates Security’s primary objective is to effectively maintain operations and safely staff client facilities. Outlined below are strategies the company implements to safely maintain our services during protest and riot scenarios.

Sunstates Security Emergency Response Measures

 Initial and Ongoing Communications:

  • Initiate contact with management team members and security officers immediately when any type of highly publicized event that has the potential to result in social unrest.
    • Put all local officers and emergency response teams on call.
    • Operations Managers to visit all sites in the area of concern to assess safety, provide direction, and continuous support.
  • Contact clients directly to advise of a potentially emergent situation, find out client-specific requests, and make recommendations regarding changes in coverage.
  • Continuous communication between managers, security officers, clients, and law enforcement to share the latest information and adjust coverage as needed.

Increase Staffing/Training:

  • All clients in affected areas may be advised to implement 24-hour coverage if not already in effect.
  • Recommend double coverage (at minimum) at all affected sites to ensure no officer is working alone.
  • Stay in touch with clients located outside of the immediately affected area to ensure we are responding to their requests for additional coverage.
  • Provide specialized training regarding risk mitigation and safe/appropriate responses to facility-related issues that may occur during the unrest that presents a risk to personal safety. Training is customized and documented through the Sunstates Learning Management System (LMS).

Scheduling:

  • Teams working in affected areas change to 12-hour shifts to minimize the amount of travel in and out of the geographic area of concern.
  • Adjust shift times from standard to accommodate public transportation schedules into areas of concern to allow officers the opportunity to get in place during daylight hours.

Officer Support/Safety:

  • On-duty Officers:
    • Continuous contact via phone, email, or on-site visit to obtain status updates and ensure safety.
    • Share information/answer questions.
    • Offer reassurance and support.
  • Scheduled Officers:
    • Contact officers via phone prior to their scheduled shift to discuss the following:
      • Ensure they have reliable means of transportation.
      • Brief them regarding on-going or anticipated action during their shift.
      • Share information about traffic delays or parking issues that may impact transit time
      • Offer the opportunity to arrive to work in plain clothes and change into uniform on-site to avoid drawing attention.

Technology/Equipment:

  • Utilize real-time reporting technology through a web-based platform to document tours, incidents, and activity with photos/videos.
  • Live video capability (i.e., FaceTime) with clients, managers, or other officers as needed.
  • Know the location and how to operate safety equipment such as fire extinguishers, AED units, etc.

Resource for Clients

Sunstates is committed to our clients and strives to serve as an information resource during difficult times. Following is a list of best practices to consider when preparing your contingency plan for dealing with protests or riots.

Best Practices for Facility Preparation.

  • Remove anything outside the facility or on the first floor/lobby that is not secured to the ground and could potentially be used as a projectile including tables, chairs, garbage cans, etc.
  • When locking down the building, be sure to include dock and elevators.
  • Be prepared to shut down the HVAC system in the instance that tear gas or other airborne chemicals are deployed in the immediate area of the building; should these substances get into the HVAC system, the entire building will have to be evacuated and decontaminated.
  • Recommend that a member of the building engineering team be on-site or available 24/7 as part of building an emergency response plan.
  • Be sure that all external security cameras are well secured and be prepared to share the footage with law enforcement.
  • Identify a safe place to park away from any action or plan to utilize public transportation. Do not park a vehicle in areas where action is anticipated and is likely to get blocked in and/or damaged.

Minimize Risk to Employees.

  • If possible, allow employees to work remotely.
  • Reschedule events for a later date.
  • Limit business hours to end early and allow travel out of the affected area before nightfall.
  • Provide training/guidelines on emergency response within your facility and the importance of situational self-awareness.
  • Maintain ongoing communication with employees who are remote or onsite during a violent scenario to provide support and direction, as well as ensure emotional well-being.

As your security partner, Sunstates Security is committed to the ongoing support of our regular security operations while serving as a resource to our clients for any emergency response requirements. The Sunstates Security management team is available 24/7 for our employees and our clients.  You are encouraged to reach out to your local contact if you have questions, concerns, or additional coverage needs or visit our website.

COVID-19 Update: What Sunstates Security is doing

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Coronavirus Update- Sunstates Security Company

Updated May 12, 2020

In accordance with the government’s “Opening Up America Again” initiative, Sunstates Security is taking steps to return to normal operations.

For employees:

  • Staying in communication with furloughed officers, assisting with funding options, checking on their well-being, and providing updated information as it becomes available on when their positions may return.
  • Continuous communication with active employees to check health, ensuring site safety protocol compliance, and collecting feedback on how we can best support their specific operation.
  • Preparing for a gradual return to work in Phase 1, including employee training & screening, workplace modifications to accommodate social distancing, enhanced cleaning protocols, and limitation of visitors and contractors.

For clients:

  • Continued evaluation of federal, state & local government regulations by our legal & compliance team as it relates to shelter in place, stay at home, PPE guidelines, etc.
  • Actively recruiting and increasing our talent pipeline to ensure we have the resources to respond quickly to increased site coverage requirements as the economy begins to reopen.
  • Implementing automated processes for electronic issuance and approval of invoices and payment options for all clients.
  • Collaborating with client management teams on return-to-work processes and procedures to ensure the safety of their employees, clients, visitors, vendors, and contractors while continuing to enforce security protocols.
  • Continued sourcing of new pipelines for procuring PPE and sharing resources with clients as necessary.

Sunstates Security continues to focus on the health and well-being of our employees and the safety of those we serve while fulfilling our service commitments.

On the following pages, we have included a timeline of actions the company has taken since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis and which we continue to maintain as the scenario unfolds. 

Summary of Actions Taken to Date

For our employees…

Sunstates appreciates our employees, and our first and foremost concern is their safety and well-being. Our goal is to keep people employed while providing a safe workplace and clear operating protocols in line with CDC guidelines.

Ongoing Safety Communications/Resources:

  • As needed, provisions of PPE, cleaning, and sanitizing supplies provided for offices and posts while maintaining an updated inventory by region.
  • Ongoing and regularly scheduled conference calls including Legal & Compliance, Human Resources, Quality Assurance, Training, and Executive Management Team members to discuss COVID-19 updates, hygiene practices, evolving client requirements, and operational processes.
  • March 16 – Sunstates began providing ongoing communication to educate employees, including COVID-19 Safety & Preparedness Bulletin, Hand Washing & Sanitizing Guidelines, and Social Distancing Strategies Protocol.
  • March 20 – CEO Kathryn Burrell communicated to all employees regarding safety and employee resources.
  • March 23 – Sunstates issued a bulletin regarding security employee classification as essential employees by the DHS and provided officers with a letter to carry, along with their state licenses, when traveling to/from work.
  • March 26 – Human Resources sent communication regarding medical coverage, including the availability of Telemedicine visits and COVID-19 testing.
  • April 17 – Rolled out an employee pledge campaign asking all officers to commit to social distancing and other COVID-19 recommended safety guidelines; participation will be tracked through the LMS system.
  • COVID-19 Training: Sunstates launched a mandatory COVID-19 training module for all employees on March 16, easily accessible, and tracked through our online LMS. 
  • April 1 – Released a new training module regarding the use of PPE with enrollments based upon management requests; updated information released on April 10.
  • April 13 – Released a new training module regarding vehicle cleanliness; managers send job numbers to the training department to auto-enroll officers with driving positions.
  • April 20 – Released a new training module for conducting temperature checks including important guidance on maintaining proper social distance, utilizing permanent barriers, and incorporating technology such as thermal imaging cameras that achieve safety, accuracy, and efficiency.  This training is mandated for all employees performing this function.
  • Continued Employment: Sunstates is doing everything possible to retain employees who may have been affected by reductions in coverage by cross-training at other locations, refining schedules, adjusting to 32-hour workweeks, and offering opportunities to fulfill additional service requests through the Sunstates Mutual Aid Rapid Response Team (SMARRT) program.
  • Employee Benefits: On March 20, our Human Resources Department distributed information on government benefits. We have also expanded company policy to allow those whose positions are negatively impacted by COVID-19 to retain employee status with the ability to resume work at Sunstates without having to reapply or losing tenure once the emergent situation has passed. Continue to share information about virtual health care resources, EAP information, and communications from Empower for those enrolled in the Sunstates Security 401(k) program.

New Protocol for Recruiting & Onboarding to Ensure Safety and Social Distancing: 

  • Phone and/or video interviews, using multiple platforms, such as Skype & Facetime.
  • Staggered timing for hiring events, in-person interviews, sizing for uniforms, etc., to limit the number of people and to allow for six-foot distancing.
  • Changes in location or size of training classes to allow for adequate distancing; implementation of live-stream video training for state licensing (where approved by the state licensing agencies) as well as Sunstates orientation.
  • Employee Recognition: Special recognition of officers who are going above and beyond the call of duty during this challenging time. 

For our clients…

Sunstates Security continues to serve our clients, adjusting coverage requirements as needed. As the situation evolves, Sunstates is exploring creative solutions to fulfill client requirements and to meet our internal quality standards, while ensuring safe social distancing and compliance with CDC guidelines.

  • March 16 – Implementation of Virtual Quality Assurance Checks.
  • April 9 – introduced a new COVID-19 specific virtual QA check to ensure proper use of PPE and compliance with social distancing and hygiene guidelines.
  • Scheduled and impromptu video meetings and calls with clients.
  • Continued consultation with clients to develop a protocol and share best practices regarding new pandemic-related requirements such as social distancing measures, use of PPE, sanitary standards, temperature checks, etc. in ways that mitigate risk for our clients and our officers.
  • Provide PPE, cleaning & sanitizing supplies for officers at client sites when needed.
  • Proactive planning for additional coverage requirements through expanded recruiting and enrollment with the Sunstates Mutual Aid Rapid Response Team (SMARRT). In the past 60 days, enrollment has increased substantially, providing an enhanced emergency coverage resource for Sunstates clients.

Such strategic changes to our processes and operating procedures will allow us to continue taking care of our employees and clients, while stimulating the economy by creating new employment opportunities throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Please reach out to the Sunstates management team or search for employment opportunities on our website.

It’s a Family Affair

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Sunstates recently got a new addition to its Corporate HR team, and she knows Sunstates through and through. Karen Rice, Office Administrator received an internal promotion from her previous position as Security Officer at a client site in the Raleigh, NC region. When the job opened up, her Operations Manager Sam Valencia was quick to recommend her for the job. He believed she was the perfect embodiment of Sunstates mission and vision. But the story doesn’t end there!

Karen’s daughter Tywanda stepped into Karen’s old role at the same client site. Karen says of her promotion, “I was extremely humbled to be thought of for the role and am excited to grow further with Sunstates.” We love the opportunity to advance our loyal employees professionally and are excited to watch both Karen and Tywanda shine in their new roles. At Sunstates, we treat one another as family – and in this case, it couldn’t be more true!

Written by Sunstates Security

January 28th, 2020 at 7:39 pm

Posted in Sunstates News

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Challenges and opportunities in the contract security industry

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Challenges and opportunities in the contract security industry

Technology, social trends and budgetary constraints are driving opportunities and challenges in the contract security industry. Increasing consolidation is also changing the industry landscape, especially among the larger companies.

Sunstates Security has been preparing for many of these challenges and opportunities by taking a different path when it comes to growth and consolidation.

 

Challenges and Opportunities

A recent white paper by Robert H. Perry & Associates, Inc., outlined several trends that will affect the industry in the near future:

Opportunities

  • Many municipalities are upgrading their security by outsourcing to security firms.
  • Recent crime increases in public places are also leading to increased needs for security firms and services.

Challenges

  • There is growing pressure on the industry to provide higher wages, especially as minimum wages rise.
  • There is growing pressure to provide more benefits, such as sick pay and other paid time off (PTO).
  • Several alarm and technology companies are racing to develop electronic security systems to replace or supplant security officers.

Growth and Consolidation

To meet those challenges, the biggest companies are getting bigger, often by merging with or swallowing up competitors.

A recent report by Security ProAdvisors shows that the top 10 firms account for half of all industry revenues. Six of them acquired, merged with, or formed partnership agreements with other firms in 2018. Others did the same in previous years.

Sunstates Security, which was listed as the 11th largest in the industry, has followed a different strategy.

Unlike other firms, our growth has been entirely organic: no mergers, no acquisitions, no takeovers of other companies to bulk up our employee count and revenues. Starting with $0 in 1998, Sunstates Security has grown by going above and beyond for clients. Period.

We’ve also proactively met many of today’s industry challenges by the way we take care of our security officers and other employees:

  • A culture that provides opportunities and promotes from within
  • Many industry-leading employee benefits, including medical, PTO, 401(k) plan with employer match, and others
  • Education and other resources to help employees improve skills and earn raises and promotions
  • An employee recognition program that rewards employees at every level
  • A level of service that helps Sunstates achieve client retention rates well above the industry average

Benefits of Organic Growth

Growing a company organically may be slower, but it has a lot of benefits:

  • Controlled growth. Companies can manage their growth, ensuring that infrastructure and operations keeps up with the increase in the number of employees.
  • No culture clash. Employees aren’t coming from different corporate cultures; everyone understands and follows the same policies, procedures and value.
  • More opportunities. Employees have more opportunities to grow and learn, as well as earn promotions. Smart organic growth promotes from within whenever possible, ensuring that managers understand the needs of the rank and file.
  • Orderly succession. As employees move up into more responsible positions, other employees are trained and ready to take their places.
  • Higher morale. As employees see the opportunities available, morale stays high.

The Sunstates Difference

As the industry giants get bigger, many are looking to cut costs by trimming or eliminating benefits.

At Sunstates Security, we look at our security officers and managers as more than just employees. They are partners in our growth and success, and they deserve paid time off to recharge their batteries. Sunstates provides benefits that are above average because we want people who are above average. That’s also why we have a robust employee referral and recognition program—because we want to attract and retain the best.

The Future of Security

The security industry faces a changing landscape over the next few years, from an increase in electronic surveillance and other technology to new opportunities in outsourced security from government agencies. Municipalities are increasing security in schools and other public places, adding to the growth of the industry.

How will security firms meet those demands? We think organic growth is better for employees and clients, and that’s the way Sunstates Security plans to continue to grow.

To discuss the impact of these trends on your organization, please call Sunstates Security at 866-710-2019 or email us.

Written by Sunstates Security

December 10th, 2019 at 3:08 pm

Compassionate Leadership

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Image for Compassionate Leadership PostAt Sunstates Security, we strive to embody our mission and vision statements day in and day out. We make every effort to hire individuals who will reflect those statements in the work they do. We have a mantra: ”Service First”. Everyone from the President & CEO of the company to the Operations Managers believe that we are here first and foremost to serve our officers protecting client facilities. Operations Manager Ralph Nemo recently demonstrated this mindset, and we couldn’t be more proud.

An employee relatively new to the Sunstates team found herself in a dire situation – facing homelessness. She shared this information with her Operations Manager, Ralph during a routine check-in meeting. Ralph not only listened, he cared, and he acted. He, along with the site supervisor, assisted her in locating and securing affordable housing. The officer shared the following about her experience:

“I was able to find an apartment with his assistance and avoided a desperate situation. It’s easy to sit behind a desk and bark orders at people. It’s not so easy being compassionate and showing empathy when someone is going through a rough time. I’m thankful for his help and follow-up with me. This company is simply the best, period!”

When recognized for his compassionate leadership, Ralph humbly said, “Although appreciated, I never asked for nor expected any recognition for assisting her in this dire situation. Helping your neighbor is something that we all should strive to do if we’re in the position to do so. I would’ve done this for anyone. Our folks are more than just employees and are our greatest asset.”

We agree! With our customized structure of smaller and manageable portfolios, our Operations Managers have the opportunity to be genuinely involved in their people’s success. Ralph emulates our mantra of Service First and we are ecstatic to have recently celebrated his 10-year anniversary with the Sunstates family (pictured above).

Part of our mission statement is this: “Our goal is to change the way clients think about safety and security by going ‘above and beyond’ every day, basing all decisions on honesty, integrity, and trust”.

  • Honesty towards our clients, employees, vendors and partners
  • Integrity to honor our commitments and always do what we say
  • Trust, ensuring that our clients and employees can count on us

We are thankful to have exceptional people like Ralph on the Sunstates team who truly go above and beyond.

Written by Sunstates Security

June 20th, 2019 at 9:16 pm

Quality Assurance: Consistent Support for Security Officers

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Sunstates Security has always focused on providing consistent, high-quality service. For clients, that means Sunstates officers are professionals they can count on.

Behind the scenes, what clients don’t see is the high level of training, support and oversight our security officers receive. With double-digit growth for the past several years, we’ve recently promoted one of our own to a new position: Ryan Moran, formerly Sunstates regional manager in Raleigh, is now the director of quality assurance. He’s been in the industry 18 years, starting as a security officer when he was in college, and he knows the demands that challenge clients daily.

His job is simple: to make sure we live up to our principles with every client, and to help managers and officers live those principles every day. He demonstrated that as a regional manager, managing the biggest portfolio of clients in Sunstates.

Sometimes he’ll be an extra expert, dropping in wherever he’s needed. Other times, he’ll be working with regional offices to help officers and managers continue to deliver the high level of professionalism our clients expect.

“What better person to have in the quality assurance position than someone who knows what to look for?” said Sunstates President Glenn Burrell, CPP. “He knows our system so well, and he knows and embraces the Sunstates culture.”

Here’s what to expect with this new role and resource:

• More support. The expanding quality assurance program will help managers and officers collaborate and support each other.
• More services. We’ll continually add new ways to support our clients, such as site vulnerability assessments and other services.
• More customization. We will expand on our custom quality-assurance checks for specific sites, to ensure we always do what we say we’re going to do.
• More sharing. With Ryan’s new position, we’ll be better able to share insights, strategies and best practices among multiple regions.
• More communications. Ryan will be another point of contact and resource when needed for our clients.

The Game of Work
Every manager at Sunstates receives a book called The Game of Work. The main principle of the book embodies our philosophy: work should be fun, and work teams should succeed together as sports teams do.

Great teams work together: All members know the plan and their role in it. And everyone knows the critical measurements that define success for their team. Those Key Performance Indicators, or KPIs, vary by client and region. Our quality assurance initiative will help you identify and achieve the ones that are more important for you and your team.

What Clients Will See
With so much of what we do going on behind the scenes, how will quality assurance help our clients?

The answer comes from a long-time client, who’s been with Sunstates for 20 years. He said he’s never considered going anywhere else because we’ve consistently given him the same high level of service since day one.

“We always want to make sure that we’re doing what we say we are going to do,” said Ryan Moran, Director of Quality Assurance. “It takes oversight to make sure that’s happening.”

We value the trust our clients have in Sunstates, and we always want to live up to that trust. By leveraging Ryan’s operational expertise, we can continue to provide outstanding service to our clients, and continue to support Sunstates’ officers and managers as they provide that service.

Do you want to know what Sunstates’ quality assurance will mean for you and your site? Please contact Sunstates Security at 866-710-2019 or email us.

Written by Sunstates Security

January 10th, 2019 at 8:19 pm

Posted in Sunstates News

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4 New Year’s Resolutions for Security Directors

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4 New Year’s Resolutions for Security Directors

As we start the New Year, most of us have personal and professional goals to which we aspire. For security professionals, we recommend the following resolutions to help make 2018 a successful, uneventful one for your organization.

  1. Update and test the business continuity plan (BCP). Beyond the dangers of a national emergency, every organization needs a current, robust plan to recover from a crisis. In recent years, companies across the country have experienced disruption from weather emergencies. Advances in cloud computing and increasingly remote workforces are two developments that can have a dramatic impact on a BCP. The breakneck pace at which technology continues to transform business practices makes annual review and testing of BCPs more important than ever. Today, the plan should include procedures that apprise organizations of employees’ whereabouts—particularly when key personnel are traveling. Putting a plan on paper is not enough; companies need to conduct a tabletop exercise and drill at least annually.
  2. Establish (or enhance) an active shooter policy. Every company should have at least a basic policy that is communicated to employees. The U.S. Department of Homeland Safety publishes a guide that organizations can use as a starting point. In reviewing the active shooter policy, security directors need to keep in mind that the threat has increased. More shooters are forgoing handguns in favor of assault weapons. By the time police arrive, the assault is typically over. Contingency plans should include safe rooms where employees can retreat. In addition, organizations need clear guidelines regarding who closes and locks the door and when. Similar to BCPs, active shooter plans should also be tested annually with a combination of tabletop and live drills.
  3. Ensure vendor compliance with internal screening standards. Many organizations have strict background screening standards for their employees but don’t extend those requirements to vendors that provide contract or temporary personnel. As some companies have learned through repeated incidents and infractions, external partners may perform minimum screening to fulfill a vague contractual obligation. Outline the basic requirements for vendor background screenings in the security policy. At a minimum, service agreements should include this specific language. Preferably, the host organization should identify a trusted third party to ensure consistent screening standards for all on-site personnel.
  4. Perform penetration testing at key locations. While security protocols may appear iron-clad on paper, most are surprisingly easy to overcome. Resolve this year to put access control to the test: inspect perimeter fencing, check for blind spots in CCTV monitoring. Internal personnel can conduct preliminary testing, but organizations should consider contracting a qualified third party for unbiased reporting. Testing should focus on vulnerable entry points, testing the physical, human and technological aspects of the security program.

For information on how Sunstates Security can help your organization implement these resolutions, call 866-710-2019 or email us.

Written by Sunstates Security

January 26th, 2018 at 7:40 pm

Security Operations Centers: More Accessible Than Ever

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Security Operations Centers: More Accessible Than Ever

As technology becomes more sophisticated, more affordable and more compatible, an increasing number of organizations are developing security operations centers, or SOCs, to support their security programs. In fact, Sunstates Security has partnered with companies to manage these command centers both locally and internationally.

Benefits of GSOCs
No longer restricted to spy thrillers and global mega-corporations, SOCs allow small-to-medium enterprises to leverage technology in expanding their security capabilities, while reducing headcount.

  • Universal protocols. Managing security operations from a SOC makes it easier for large companies to apply security standards across their organizations. Controlling access from a central location, for instance, reduces the need to rely on individuals to follow company protocols. SOCs can help ensure that every facility adheres to the same procedures and benefits from the same level of security expertise.
  • Improved asset control. Many companies use these centers to provide additional layers of asset control. Local employees are trusted to do the right thing, and technology provides verification. For example, some companies track high-value shipments with GPS technology. Geo-fencing the route sends an alert if the vehicle travels a specific distance off course, and SOC personnel can contact the driver and offer assistance, if needed. Similarly, SOCs can support employees traveling to high-risk countries by providing information on demonstrations or other incidents that could affect their safety.
  • Remote monitoring. Technology integration has significantly increased the capabilities of SOC operators. In addition to monitoring an airplane hangar, for instance, to prevent tampering with corporate aircraft, security personnel can interact with individuals on site. In some cases, SOCs have allowed the remote identification of intruders, who ultimately left the facility before causing damage. Other operators have witnessed medical emergencies and directed responders to provide assistance.
  • Real-time intelligence. Some sophisticated organizations have built briefing rooms adjacent to the command centers. If a major incident affects a company or one of its operating regions, executive teams move to the briefing room, which duplicates many of the monitors and other equipment in the SOC.

Additional Considerations
In developing and supporting SOCs for client companies, we’ve seen some common misconceptions. Frequently, organizations tend to overestimate cost savings from reduction in security personnel, while underestimating the risk of information overload.

  • Lower headcount, higher skill level. Beyond the expense of creating the SOC, these sophisticated centers require highly skilled operators with specialized training. Security departments are “doing more with less” in terms of personnel, but these positions command higher pay, better benefits and increased training. At some locations, for instance, operators complete between 80 and 120 hours of one-on-one training before they enter the SOC.
  • Less is more. Many organizations want to fill an entire wall with monitors, allowing command-center personnel to view more areas at once. However, operators can only absorb so much information. A more efficient practice is to support primary monitors with secondary monitors. If an incident occurs, the relevant images are transferred to the primary screens.

Thinking of creating a SOC at your organization? Sunstates Security can help you optimize a control center from a security perspective, in addition to arranging tours of active SOCs. Call us at 866-710-2019 or email us.

Written by Sunstates Security

January 26th, 2018 at 7:32 pm

Sunstates Security Expands with Key Management

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Sunstates Security Expands with Key Management

Continued Double-Digit Organic Growth Drives Expansion of Management Team

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

RALEIGH, N.C., November 8, 2017—Sunstates Security’s commitment to their Mission and Vision of Honesty, Integrity and Trust continue to drive the company’s double-digit, organic growth. Sunstates is pleased to announce the additions of key management team members.

Travis Miller has joined the Sunstates Security management team with a comprehensive background in the contract security industry. During the past 13 years in the industry, he has served in several multi-faceted roles. Beginning his security career in a business development role, he successfully established a new client base in the Orlando area while building and expanding existing partnerships. As natural leader and motivator, he began to take on more operational and management responsibility as a Branch Manager, a role in which he developed a cohesive management team and achieved significant branch growth. He was promoted to Regional Manager, an expanded role in which he assumed responsibility for a team of 400+ employees and a portfolio of clients across the state of Florida. The combination of Travis’ adaptability, leadership style, and experience with every aspect of the security business make him a valuable member of the Sunstates Security team, and an excellent resource for Sunstates clients in the Florida market. Travis holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Management Information Systems from the University of Central Florida, and has attended numerous leadership and customer service training programs through a variety of organizations to include Dale Carnegie, Ty Boyd, and Miller Heiman. He is active in several professional organizations to include ASIS International (at the national and local level) and the Orlando and Gold Coast Chapters of the Community Associations Institute (CAI).

Virginia Lumsden has more than 20 years’ experience as a Facility Security Officer (FSO), Office Administrator, Task Manager, and Human Resources representative for various defense contractors. She has successfully created and maintained multiple security management programs for several defense contractors that were not only compliant with numerous government agency’s policies, but also received Superior ratings from those agencies during yearly assessments. Virginia has provided logistical support to multiple teams of security personnel who were deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as to emergency relief teams during Hurricane Katrina. She has also provided support to the instructors of the U.S. Air Marshals after 9/11, as well as instructors providing counter-terrorism training at U.S. embassies worldwide. Virginia received her B.A. from UNC-Greensboro and is currently pursuing a degree in Cyber Security.

 

 

Myketa “Keta” Mitchell joined Sunstates Corporate office as the new Staff Accountant on September 1st. Keta graduated from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a degree in Finance and brings 3 years of accounting experience to the team. As a Staff Accountant, Keta’s role is to support corporate and field staff by processing accounts payable and receivable transactions. These processes will also require her to liaison with our clients and vendors. Keta’s organizational skills and positive attitude have already made an impact and we look forward to her development within the Corporate Finance team.

 

 

 

David “Dave” Kleiman brings over 10 years of legal expertise to corporate headquarters as our Legal, Compliance and Risk Management Director. He obtained his Juris Doctor from The John Marshall Law School and licensed to practice in the state of Illinois.

For several years Dave owned his own practice focusing on consumer, corporate, criminal, real estate, workers’ compensation, and personal injury matters. He later transitioned to the corporate world taking on large roles with two international companies. The first company sponsored the Manchester United soccer team and is a global leader in human resources, insurance and risk management. The second company produced many household items that many of us know and love such as Oreos and Sour Patch Kids.

“We are pleased to welcome new leadership talent to Sunstates,” says President Glenn Burrell, who founded Sunstates Security after serving 20 years in Scotland Yard. “We look forward to the contributions of each of these individuals in their new roles.”

About Sunstates Security
Based in Raleigh, N.C., Sunstates Security provides uniformed security personnel and security consulting services to clients throughout the United States. The company is certified as a Women’s Business Enterprise by the Greater Business Women’s Council, a regional certifying partner of the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC).

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Written by Sunstates Security

November 8th, 2017 at 8:40 pm