3 Tips for Selecting the Right Console for Control Rooms

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Command centers are crucial for government, military, and utility organizations to communicate effectively and dispatch resources. But to keep this room secure and running smoothly, up-to-date technology is a must.

Control rooms and command center builds surround the workstation, a place where an operator spends hours at a time. Increased productivity is the result of implementing the right technology in a healthy workstation. With technology constantly evolving, organizations must keep an eye out for the needs of operators and the organization.

By planning and staying ahead of trends, you'll be on your way to an efficient and secure control room.

What to Consider When Selecting a Console

The appearance and functionality of control rooms and command centers are changing due to rapidly evolving technology such as the use of flat-panel monitors and displays, video processing for live IP-based video streams, and web-based applications. While these advancements are enabling unprecedented levels of insight, operators are responsible for managing more sources than ever before. They must understand how to use an assortment of software and hardware to assess and respond accordingly to potential threats.

Additionally, some organizations require 24/7 vigilance regardless of what the mission is. Operators must be able to perform their job tasks to the best of their abilities. Therefore, these environments must have the right workstation.

Keep these three tips in mind when surveying the market:

1. Ergonomics

Operators spend hours at their workstations, analyzing nuanced changes in data, video, and other information constantly. With that in mind, ergonomics is critical to the job. Operators can’t afford to be distracted by discomfort, fatigue, or eyestrain due to distant monitors or sitting at a workstation that isn’t at the proper height.

Organizations should look for console designs with a height-adjustable tabletop. Height adjustments accommodate a person of any size, allowing the freedom to sit or stand. Some consoles can smoothly transitions from sitting-desk height to standing-desk height with a simple press of a button. Utilizing this type of workstation equipment can increase comfort for operators, ultimately increasing productivity.

Computer monitors also factor into the equation. A good rule of thumb is for the monitor to sit no more than an arm’s length away from an operator’s eyes. The line of sight should be level with the top of the screen rather than the middle. Utilizing an adjustable monitor mount will allow every user to achieve the correct height. By following these guidelines, you can decrease the risk of eye strain and fatigue.

2. Reliability

While operators help decide on the right workstation, technology reliability is also essential. It is vital to maintain system uptime in security and surveillance applications. With the unique demands and technical requirements of a control room and command center, organizations must select a properly engineered solution. Features should include:

  • Integrated cable management to keep cables organized and free from impingement
  • Ventilation to keep technology operating at optimal temperatures
  • Easy-to-access power and data outlets
These qualities can help protect a company’s technology investments and prevent the untimely cost of failures.

3. Customization

Because no two control rooms are alike, an out-of-the-box solution may not check every box for your organization. With that in mind, some manufacturers have introduced online design tools. These tools allow organizations to build virtual renders of a console. They can be used to visualize how a finished product will look and fit within the space, ensuring it matches the exact application requirement before purchasing.

Control rooms and command centers come in all shapes and sizes. Although these environments have been around for decades, they are increasing at many organizations. Installing the correct audio, video, and data equipment is crucial for decision making and for selecting the right workstation. A well-chosen solution will support multiple operators comfortably in their mission and engineered for today’s and tomorrow’s technological advancement.

Taking Charge of Your Command Center

You may consider many factors when selecting a console for your organization. How much space will you need? What type of equipment and technology? How will you handle maintenance issues?

The first step to determining the right command center and control room for your organization is to identify your needs. By keeping your workstation, goals, and the latest technology in mind, you’re heading in the right direction toward an exceptional command and control center.

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