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Removing doubt from the recipe:
Why industry certifications are crucial for installers

Nick Whiting, Head of BT Redcare

The security industry has come a long way in terms of the safety and innovation of its products, and that has been heavily influenced by the rigorous testing by leading third-party certification bodies such as the world-renowned Loss Prevention Certification Board (LPCB), part of the BRE Group, BSI and the BSI Kitemark, and Secured by Design with their Secure Connected Device (SCD) certification, an official police security initiative. 


You wouldn’t feel comfortable eating at a restaurant if you had even the slightest doubt that the kitchen hygiene setup wasn’t up to scratch. That’s why seeing that 5-star hygiene rating – which is awarded after passing rigorous third-party inspections – provides comfort as it shows you’re in safe hands and your meal will be crafted in a high-quality environment.


Installers and their customers feel the same way about alarm signalling solutions. They want to know that the products used are of the highest standards and have been given the green light by industry bodies, not just the vendors’ propositions team. 

The challenges of skipping on safety

There is a plethora of challenges that transpire without proper accreditation. One to take seriously is that Some suppliers may have strict requirements for the installers they work with. If they do not have the necessary accreditation, they may be excluded, which can limit their access to customers. There are obvious financial implications for this, as it reduces opportunities for new business.


On the other hand, if installers don’t use products that have third-party certification, they also expose themselves to legal implications. This is because if a product they installed leads to a fire or burglary, and it wasn’t appropriately checked beforehand, they could be held responsible. The consequences could be catastrophic, but that’s why third-party certifications exist. They are a safety net and a source of reassurance for both installers and customers. 

Fine dining in the security market

Fundamentally, reputation is everything in this industry. What certifications offer is a route to establishing trust with customers. For example, a new, up-market restaurant may be rumoured to have the best dish on the menu, but if it fails the latest food hygiene test, it’s unlikely customers will take a seat in the dining room, spend their cash or tell their friends to try it out.


In times of economic uncertainty, it’s important that installers are putting their best foot forward and are creating a loyal customer base. Importantly, certifications give installers the leverage to boost their bottom line through marketing.  By choosing to sell products that are highly commended in the industry, they are setting themselves up for success. A simple recognisable logo used on products can give an edge over competitors who may not have the same level of certification, making them more attractive to potential customers. Some customers specifically look for certified installers too, which means this can translate into more business and higher profits.


Ultimately, certifications signify the best in the business. Products are subject to continuous and rigorous checks by independent auditors and this level of repeated scrutiny leaves little room for error in how effective the products are. From a thorough application process to numerous factory visits, if at any point of the process issues are flagged, it can lead to suspensions, or at worst, withdrawals of the certificate.


As a result, installers are more likely to have higher quality installations that meet or exceed these standards. This can lead to fewer call-backs, reduced liability and higher customer satisfaction

Why certifications will continue to help installers

Looking ahead, certifications will need to evolve with technological advancements to accommodate the changing needs of new products. For example, with the acceleration of IoT and smart devices, the door to new risks will be opened. From cybersecurity concerns to a range of technical limitations of new products, they will demand stringent and constantly adapting standards.


As we enter a new era of alarm signalling products, installers should keep their eye out for the latest changes in alarm certification standards, so they are offering their customers the best, and safest products available.


Focusing education on the right people at the right time across the supply chain is crucial. It’s clear that most installers understand the importance of testing. The challenge is ensuring everyone, from product designers to marketing managers, recognises why they need to be front of mind.  


In a market that is becoming increasingly competitive, and a world where fires and burglaries remain a persistent risk, it’s vital that the alarm signalling industry removes doubt from the recipe with high-quality, third-party certifications.

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