Changing the Game for Thousands of Central Stations an Interview with Cliff Dice, president, CEO, and founder of DICE Corporation. With the prevalence of do-it-yourself home monitoring, extreme weather events, and the COVID-19 pandemic, choosing the right alarm, video, and interactive monitoring and event management platform, as well as a cloud hosting partner, has never been more important for central monitoring stations. DICE Corporation president and CEO Cliff Dice reflects on DICE’s 35th anniversary, the company’s flagship Matrix Monitoring software, and what the company is doing to help central stations meet upcoming UL requirements.
Congratulations on 35 years! What are you most proud of as you look back on nearly four decades in the alarm industry?
With so many advancements in technology and the way the industry has evolved and adapted using our solutions, there is a lot to be proud of. I would have to say our biggest and most rewarding achievement has been the success of our Matrix Monitoring alarm and event management software. We’re known as the industry standard for our automation technology and have won many awards for providing innovative solutions that our users count on to power their central stations. It’s always very rewarding hearing success stories and how we’ve been able to partner with our clients to develop solutions that meet their needs.
You also offer a streamlined version of your Matrix Monitoring software. How does this differ from the traditional solutions you are known for?
Our mission has always been to offer custom solutions and the highest level of customer service to anyone who needs our services. Although Matrix Monitoring is the best solution for central stations, we understand the financial burden many small to medium-size centrals are facing today with the impact of do-it-yourself home monitoring solutions and industry consolidations. We recently introduced Matrix Lite which runs on our platform, includes an embedded PBX, and delivers the same power and capability of Matrix Monitoring without all of the bells and whistles larger central stations require. For example, we recently equipped an independent central station with Matrix Lite and they are operating for approximately $500 a month and still benefit from the reliability of DICE. It’s a great opportunity that we’re pleased to be able to offer.
With the upcoming UL requirements, many central stations are looking for cost-effective solutions to remain in compliance. What are you doing to assist your customers?
We are preparing all of our customers to stay in compliance with the upcoming UL data center standards, which require all central stations – whether you have hundreds of accounts or thousands – to have two data centers. For most this is not feasible financially and would probably cost millions of dollars, so we are now providing our customers with redundant data center options that meet these new standards and will eliminate most of the upfront overhead costs that would be required to build a second data center. In fact, DICE Corporation is the first 827A data center in Canada and the largest in the United States. This is something that will impact everyone and we can even assist non-DICE users, although the process is simpler using Matrix. Now is the time to start thinking about your options and our team is here to answer all of your questions.
Business continuity planning has received a lot of interest this year. What should central stations do to stay connected during challenging circumstances? We’ve been assisting customers with disaster recovery and business continuity for years, but between helping central stations transition to remote working due to the pandemic to helping monitoring centers maintain operations after severe weather events, this has been our busiest year yet. Planning is key to a smooth transition. With cloud infrastructure and the right procedures in place, we can help you maintain your essential operations with minimal downtime. We just assisted a central station during Tropical Storm Isaias that lost power. The transition was seamless, which goes to show how versatile our solutions are during unexpected situations.