One of the first surveillance systems I installed was for a friend of mine down here in sunny Florida. He has several restaurants and he was going to start his test of the equipment on this unit located near the beach.
The installation went smoothly, and we had him up and running in short order. He was now able to watch the restaurant from home on his laptop. He was so pleased with the system that he had it installed in all his restaurants. He has called me several times to tell how much he appreciated me taking the time to convince him this was a good move.
On one of the calls he just casually mentioned that four months after installing the systems, he has not had a workmans compensation claim in two months, something that was very common before the cameras were installed. This alone is paying for the systems. Not only is it saving him money, it is saving him time.
He isn’t filling out forms, or going to hearings.
The cameras have foiled the old accident game. No more paying for back injuries that never happened. The employees now know that if they fell, the camera would see it, and the result is no more phony claims.
This was something that never occurred to me when I was selling the system, but it sure is a big benefit that I won’t leave out in the future.
Insurance money is a big part of any business with employees, and if you have a good record of being “accident free” your premiums go down, and many times substantially. Over the span of a few years that could mean a much bigger slice of the pie going in your pocket, or to funding another business, or to making repairs or capital improvements.
My Florida friend tunes in to his different operations at different times every day, and takes a few notes on what he sees. Then he gets together with his managers and implements procedures to fix what is wrong. His estimate is that the surveillance systems paid for themselves in the first month, and that since then he has put thousands and thousands of dollars on his bottom line.
“Sometimes,” he says, “it is the little things that I see. But when you have multiple properties, and they are all doing a little thing wrong, it’s a big thing. If all your bartenders are over pouring, that’s a tremendous amount of money in a month. If we are over cooking four or five steaks a night in six locations, that’s a lot of money in a month in waste. I fix one or two things at a time, and the bottom line results are outstanding.”
I’m sure there are going to be even more benefits that I haven’t thought of as surveillance systems become more and more commonplace. One thing I know for sure though, is that the benefits already far outweigh the cost.