Case Study: Innovative Security Systems

Industry: Information Technology, Manufacturing & Industrial

Innovative Security Systems, Inc. is an award-winning company that offers a complete line of commercial electronic security equipment and services designed to add safety and security to every property. The firm, headquartered in Beltsville, Prince George’s County with a second office in Fort Myers, Florida, was awarded recognition as a “Top Security Technology Company” by the Washington Business Journal.

Innovative Security’s solutions include video surveillance, access control, alarm systems and intercom systems designed to provide complete protection capabilities to critical facilities and commercial properties throughout the Baltimore-Washington region as well as Southwest Florida. Clients include the Baltimore Ravens, the Maryland Institute College of Art, J.W. Marriott Hotel in downtown Washington, D.C., WINK TV / Fort Myers Broadcasting Company, and a variety of federal state and local government agencies as well.

Donald Cox founded the firm in 1994 after working for another commercial security company and identifying opportunities to provide a better solution to the marketplace. On day one, Don literally purchased a box of business cards and began canvassing the region for new customers. A year and a half later, he was joined by Gary Najaka, and together the two lead Innovative Security today.

While the company’s stock-in-trade is the sales and service of security technologies and products, it’s the commitment and professionalism of their two dozen or so employees that makes the critical difference in a crowded marketplace. To that end, one of the greatest priorities for Don and Gary is to build and maintain a highly talented team.

While the residential security industry is being rapidly commoditized, commercial security — which is the sole focus of Innovative Security — remains a solution-focused segment, where customers certainly want a competitively-priced solution, but recognize that what they need along with a good price is the right product and reliable support.

Innovative Security delivers in that area by offering a combination of highly knowledgeable staff, and personalized support that a small, local firm can deliver much more consistently than large, national conglomerate.

In order to deliver on their brand promise, Innovative Security needs to know that their CPA firm is reliable and proactive in meeting their needs. Recognizing that this was a priority they needed to address, Don and Gary performed online research to locate reputable regional accounting firms. They interviewed five firms in total, and selected BradyRenner CPAs after a thorough review.

“We felt that we had a true connection with Matt Brady,” adds Don, “because Matt clearly understood what we were looking for, and he was interested in more of a long-term relationship rather than just doing work and billing us. Since this is the same approach we take with our clients, we were certain this would be a good fit.”

Both Don and Gary also noted that Matt was much easier to talk with than the other accountants they interviewed, and that his personable and professional nature made them feel that they would be working as peers, one business owner to another, with someone to whom they could relate. So, they signed with BradyRenner CPAs and never looked back.

That was nearly eight years ago, and to this day the values that Matt Brady conveyed in their first meeting still hold true. Gary works closely with Debi Difonzo, one of the firm’s staff accountants, who oversees accounting and payroll functions for Innovative Security.

In addition, Matt Brady meets with Don and Gary quarterly to discuss the firm’s growth, future direction and other CFO-level questions and priorities. In addition, Don and Gary are quick to point out that everyone on the BradyRenner team is extremely responsive, i.e. when you have a question, they deliver an answer. When you send an email, you get a timely — and complete — reply. “Put simply, they take really good care of us,” says Gary.

“We’re really happy with what Matt and the team at BradyRenner CPAs has done, and we’re happy to refer any business or serve as a reference for them at any time,” he adds. “And the reason is simple: they always come through with what they say they are going to do, and when they say they are going to do it.”