Physical Security Information Management (PSIM) is traditionally thought of as a piece of software that allows a company to integrate a number of systems together so that there is a single pane of glass showing all pertinent information in front of security personnel. In the physical security world your company might have a video system, an access control system, an intrusion system, a fire system, etc. These are the classic areas for physical security, but they are different machines in your command center, beeping and flashing and trying to draw your attention. When they do create an alarm, the employee turns his chair, finds out what is going on, and does something about it.
PSIM is a way to have software that sits above these systems, that decides what is the most pressing alarm that is coming in now. It is seen as an integration platform to get a common operating picture (COP) of everything that is going on in your company. So why, then, install a PSIM system when we can already integrate products to perform functions such as a video system turning toward a door which has its access control alarm sounding? Three answers: situational awareness, situation management, and situation reconstruction.
Situational awareness means knowing what is going on. Situational management refers to what is done once it is known that a problem has arisen. Situational reconstruction means reviewing the incident after the fact. PSIM can help streamline and optimize all of these processes at once. But these systems are complicated. How can a tech decision maker learn what they need to get only what they need out of a PSIM system?