Video Monitoring Helps in Tough Economic Times

  • March 11, 2009
  • Longwatch, Inc
  • News

March 11, 2009 — According to a new white paper by Steve Rubin, president and CEO of Longwatch, video monitoring can help companies survive through layoffs, plant closings, and idling of plants. The white paper, “Video Helps in a Tough Economy,” explains that when plants have layoffs or shut down, much work remains to be done, often by a severely reduced workforce. After layoffs, video monitoring can help by replacing missing workers with strategically-located cameras that report to the plant’s HMI/SCADA system over the existing network, or via wireless. As Rubin points out, “Assuming the average worker has a fully-burdened annual cost of $80K, you could add about 20 cameras in the factory and still have money left over.” A video system multiplies the number of eyes an operator has, without burdening the operator with much more work to do. Integrated into the existing network and the existing HMI, video provides a low-impact, high-value solution that delivers “virtual operators” in a downsized environment. This helps when the staff is reduced, but what about closing a plant? Plant assets have to be watched, and some systems must remain operational in case the plant opens again. Hiring an outside security service is one way, but that can cost a lot of money, and may require installing a dedicated, closed-circuit monitoring system. Instead, Rubin says to use the same plant-monitoring video system for security, too. “Video performs double duty: it can monitor the plant and provide video surveillance for security,” says Rubin. “It even can dispatch alarms and video to a web browser or cell phone for remote monitoring and timely response.” And it all works over the existing plant network, so no new infrastructure has to be installed. “Nobody likes to see people lose jobs, nobody enjoys the stress that comes from extra work, yet everybody wants business and earnings to continue ‘as usual’,” says Rubin. “To help contain costs and stretch every available dollar and hour, a smart, easy-to-install and cost-effective video system can help you preserve your profits and preserve your business.” Download the paper here About Longwatch Longwatch, Inc. was founded by industrial automation and software veterans with the goal of simplifying video delivery over existing SCADA, HMI and distributed control networks. The result is the Longwatch Surveillance System™, a portfolio of products that enables SCADA system users to view events and easily verify alarms at local and remote sites using both legacy and new networking infrastructures. The system integrates video and system alarms on the same display for fast, reliable operation and decision-making.

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