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Webinar: System Surveyor Collaboration Tips (24:39)

In this free project management webinar, we discuss three simple ways to collaborate on site surveys and integrated security system designs within System Surveyor. With our security management platform, your team can collaborate on everything from the initial site survey to final security system integration by sharing links, inviting guest users, and utilizing the comment section. You can send secure links with an expiration date and password to anyone you want to give “view only” access to. This can be at the whole site level all the way down to just one survey. If you want to provide full editing access to a team member or collaborator, add them as a guest user. This is great for collaborating with someone like a subcontractor that needs more than just “view only” access. Our comments feature allows everyone in a project to communicate right on one platform, without having to go back and forth over emails or different communication channels. System Surveyor saves time and makes collaborating on building security systems much easier.

Audio Transcription


Laura Newell:       Hello, everyone. My name is Laura Newell, with System Surveyor. I’d like to welcome you to today’s training webinar a deeper dive into collaboration tips and tricks. Thank you for joining us. A few housekeeping items. Please note that we have had a great response to today’s webinar. So our participants are placed on mute. But at any time during this session, feel free to use the Q&A icon and the Zoom webinar interface and we’ll address all questions at the end of the session.

                              Also, please note we are recording this webinar, so if you miss something or need to rewatch or even share with a colleague, please look for an email from me, usually by the end of the day, with the recording. With that, I’d like to turn it over to Sean Petty, our customer support specialist who works closely with our users to ensure that they successfully use the tool effectively. Hey, Sean, can you hear me?

Sean Petty:            I can hear you just fine, Laura. Just to go over today’s agenda, we are going to go through three simple ways to really collaborate within the System Surveyor platform, and that is sending and sharing links, inviting guest users and using the comments section. After that, we’re going to go into a quick Q&A session before ending the webinar, today. With that, I’m going to go ahead and go right into some of the benefits of collaboration, itself.

                              So what are some of the benefits of this? It means that you can engage with everyone in one place without sending emails. As someone who works support, I know the pain of having a lot of emails in a lot of different places. This is one great place to be able to collaborate and talk to people in one space. It’s also a great way to invite extended team members without having them being part of your organization. You can also limit the time that they have access, and communicating with your team through the comment section, as well. With that, let’s go ahead and show you guys what this looks like today. Laura, just to confirm, are you able to see my System Surveyor screen?

Laura Newel:        Yes, sir.

Sean Petty:            All right. Fantastic. For those who are new, this is what the System Surveyor home screen looks like. The first thing that we’re going to go through is how to send a link. Before we do that, let’s go over what kinds of access you can give people within the System Surveyor platform that are outside of your team. What I mean outside of your team, anyone who doesn’t have a full license to System Surveyor under your team.

                              There are two different ways. You’ve got read access and edit access. Read access, or view only access, as it’s called, only gives people the availability to view. So they can view attributes, they can view layouts, but they unable to edit. And then you’ve got edit access, which gives the ability to do edits on a survey. So if they want to make changes to attributes on what’s already there, or design, they can as needed.

                              First of what we’re going to be showing is sending a link. There are two different ways and two different levels that you can do this. The first of which is at a sight level. And what it is could be and the instance I’m going to give is let’s say I’m working at Allen High School, and Laura is my contact at Allen High School. I want her to be able to view the surveys that I have on my site. I can while hovered over the site, click on the three dots on the right hand site of the page, and you’ll have options, here. We’re going to click send a lick. What this does is this pops up a window to ask who’s getting this link? When does it expire? And when you want to include a message.

                              So if Laura is my contact, I can go through and I type in her email, there. I can choose and expiration date and I can choose a message, here. Once I send a link, it’s going to send her an email and a pass code to have brief access. This is what an example of that would look like. So they’ll get an email that says, “Hey, so and so shared either a site or a survey from System Surveyor with you. Click on the link below. Enter the pass code to reveal the survey.” And they can just copy and paste this from their email. It also gives them the expiree date. So there’s no guesswork on how long they have access to view that document or to view those surveys. You’ll have that availability to see that, here.                             

                              Now, you can do this at the site level, or you can narrow it down to even individual surveys if you don’t want to give them access to every survey on that project. So, let’s say I’m only working on West Campus and Laura, instead of being my contact for the entire project, is only my contact for the fourth floor edits that we’re making. I can go through and on the three dots from this survey tile also choose “send a link.” Enter in the emails, the expiration date and the message. And what that’ll do is send an email over to her to log in and look at just that survey.

                              Now, again, this is view only access, so the only things that they’re going to be able to do are click into attributes and view those individual attributes. This includes photos, as well. So if you have any photo attachments that are there, you can have that needed, as well.

                              Now, we’ve gone over view access, but let’s go over another scenario. Let’s talk about guest users. Let’s say Laura is more involved than just needing to be able to view it. Laura is maybe a subcontractor that’s working with us that needs to go in and they need to make edits, they need to take notes, they need to add data. So this could be someone that goes in after you do the initial survey or this is someone that’s going out to the survey for you that is only working on specific jobs. You can invite them as a guest user. A guest user will only have access to the sites you add them as guests users to. And they can have access to up to five sites at a time. I also want to note that guest user access is only available for large scale and enterprise plans. So if you don’t see the option to invite as guest use essentials or starter inbound would be fine.

                              One thing to note, here, is what has already existed within System Surveyor, and this may be familiar to a lot of people, is the contacts section on the left hand site of the site overview page. This where you can view your site contacts. Adding guest users has changed just a little bit. It’s still involved within the contact section, here. But in order to become a guest user, I need to add them as a contact.

                              So as I want to maybe invite Laura, I can open up the pencil icon, here, under contacts, click on new, and I can type in her information, there. So first name, last name and email address are bare minimum to add them as a contact. I can also add things like what company they’re with. Their title, their phone number, any notes. And in order to invite them as a guest user, I can toggle this at the very bottom of the page and it’s going to give me permission to edit access, specifically, because if I’m wanting them to be able to edit as a guest user, that would be the best course of action. you can also choose read only. And I can set my expiration date.

                              There are a few options prebaked in here, such as one week from today, two weeks from today, 30-days from today, or I can set a custom date. So if I know that Laura is going to be working on this project for the next year, I can include that expiration date and choose custom and insert my own expiration date there. Once I click add, it’s going to send Laura an email with a link to accept that guest user invitation. Those invite links are good for 48 hours, so the moment that it’s sent out, be sure to click those as needed. If it doesn’t work or you’ve gone past the time allotted, no problem. All the person needs to do that sent you that guest invite is delete you as a guest user and resend.

Laura Newell:       Sean, this works just for share link and for guest user you can send to a group of sites, say, your folder, or just one survey? Can you clarify?

Sean Petty:            Guest users go to the entire site. So they’re’ going to have access to everything there. So that’s going to be the only instance. It’s not just edit access to one individual survey. It’s going to be access to the entire site.

Laura Newell:       And you can send the group of site also with share link, as well, like you were showing at the very beginning?

Sean Petty:            With “send a link” if can give access to entire sites, or individual surveys. So for instance, if I wanted to give Laura, here, access to view Allen High School and all of the surveys within the Allen High School site, including things within folders, I would send a link from the site page. If I wanted to give Laura only access to, for instance, my fourth floor plan, I would send that link from the fourth floor plan page.

Laura Newell:       Thank you.

Sean Petty:            A guest user is a great functionality to be able to use. This way, if you have technicians that are only working on specific jobs, you can invite them as guests. You’ll still be able to see edits that they’ve made. So if Laura was a guest user within my site, I could still view the audit of what was saved when it was saved, and who it was saved by under the survey info tab. So this is a great way of auditing that. Instead of having an entire user seat on your account that is just for technicians. This is one way that you can hash that out and give specific people, specific date lines to be able to narrow down how long they have access to what.

                             And you can always view what access they have, here, under contacts and team permissions, as needed. So next to [Rayte ? 10:09] – Rayte is one of my guest users – I can see that Rayte has edit permission, versus view only. So if I added them as a contact and I give them read only access, they would have an “R,” like Lisa, here has read only permission. So that’s where you would be able to see that, as well. Before I get into the comment section of this collaboration piece, Laura, was there anything that came up on those two questions?

Laura Newell:       Yes. One person has asked for more clarification. He says: For instance, I’ve created a folder that has three sites in it. It seems like I have to create guest users for each site, instead of being able to add them to the group.

Sean Petty:            That is correct. So if you have sites that are within a site group, you would need to really invite them to individual sites. This is so we can maintain that limit of five sites per survey. Because if you had a site group that had 10 sites in it, you’d have to distinguish which one you’re giving them access to, instead of the entire site.

Laura Newell:       Right. And just so we’re clear, too, it’s five sites per guest user.

Sean Petty:            Correct.

Laura Newell:       Can you limit the access that a shared site floor plan. For instance, a customer wants the survey, but they don’t need access to specific attributes?

Sean Petty:            So if you want them to just be able to view the floor plan without being able to click into the attributes, you can share using a report. So that would be running the report on the site level and running an enhanced floor plan report, or you can go through individual surveys and send those and share those. Because those export as PDFs. That way you can get those out. But as to the access of what attributes they have access to, that is something that’s not there, currently. The only thing that they won’t be able to access in attributes is if you’re using the inflow mask feature within that. They won’t be able to view that encrypted information.

Laura Newell:       Thank you, Sean.

Sean Petty:            Anything else before I move on, Laura?

Laura Newell:       Nope. That’s it for now.

Sean Petty:            Next, we’re going to be going into comments. So they’re already in the system, here. They’re either a guest user or they’re someone who has access to my sites, already. Now, how can I talk to them. generally, with companies, if they’re individual companies here, they’ll use something like Slack and they’ll talk to each other. Not everyone has the same thing, especially if they’re subcontractors that work with a different company.

                              You can use comments in this instance. So let’s say I go to my fourth floor plan. Here, even on the survey overview plan, here on the top right of the page you’re going to see comments. This where I can go through and I communicate with my team. I have no comments open right now. So let’s say I have been done doing my work and I now want to hand this off to the next step of the process. I can go through and I can type out my comment, here. I can say, “Work is done. Next phase.” Or I can even tag people. So if I wanted to tag Laura instantly, I could use her handle, there and say, “Ready for your touches.” If Laura did doing something else, I could go through and I could comment, and I’ll just say, “Ready for you.”

                              When I send out that comment, it’s going to view that here. And if I tag someone, they’re actually going to get a notification on that icon. You’ll see comments, here, and they can go through and reply to as needed, as well. So if Laura had a question or a follow-up on this, she could click on reply and comment within that thread. That way, I have that. This is something that is done. It needs no more communication. I can go ahead and close it. That way, it doesn’t show up on the open comments thread. I can still view all my closed comments by toggling here at the top and I can reopen it as needed.

                              This is a great way of communicating within your teams are different processes. That way, you have that open communication between. Was there anything else you wanted me to add, there, Laura, or any questions that we have on that?

Laura Newell:       I think it’s a good pro tip to know that any comments that you do put in System Surveyor, can be viewed by anyone. So pro tip: If you don’t want a guest user or say customer to see, maybe just be cognizant of what you’re saying comments, and don’t just throw it out there because everyone can see it.

Sean Petty:            Absolutely. That’s a great tip, Laura. Because the one thing I don’t want to do is create a comment and tag someone and start talking trash about Laura. Because Laura will be able to see that comment.

Laura Newell:       Yes. If I go in that survey, it might not be good.

Sean Petty:            So not only a communication tool, but a way to keep your morale up. That really is it when it comes to collaboration piece. just to recap what we’ve covered, today, you know, going over how to send a link. So how to give someone a view only access to your surveys or sites. How to invite people as guest users. So that’s giving them edit access to your sites. And how to comment within your surveys and communicate with your teams. With that, I’m going to go ahead and get back to this PowerPoint and then go into a Q&A session.

Laura Newell:       You guys, we meant this to be a really nice bite-size webinar going deeper into collaboration, but we welcome all questions that you might have. Jacob, we are recording this webinar. So look for an email from me, usually by the end of the day, with the recording. Sean, let’s see. For the comment section, can the comment threads be downloaded or saved?

Sean Petty:            That’s a great question. Let me check with my team and I’ll get back with you offline.

Laura Newell:       Currently, I don’t think we have a recording option for that, but that is a great request. Can you limit access for guest access for system, i.e., access camera’s infrastructure?

Sean Petty:            That’s a great question, Paul. They’ll have the same access to the elements that your team does. And just to remember, you can limit the different system types that your team can view. So, for instance, you can hide everything except for I can show just camera’s access control infrastructure. But they’ll have the same icons and same elements that your team does.

Laura Newell:       Before I forget, you guys, we have a quick poll I’m going to launch as we’re answering these questions. The interface has changed a bit. What is different about the site access permissions? Is it available in your scale pin?

Sean Petty:            Great question. The interface has changed a bit. What’s different about site access permissions, that this allows you to not only gather site-wide permissions, so giving your entire team access, but you can also include individual exceptions. Such as, if I pull my screen back open for System Surveyor, and I go back into my site, here, and I’ve paused my screen so if anyone isn’t seeing anything that would be why. So site permissions here on the bottom left of your site overview page, you can change your permissions, here, and this is something that your admin or the site creator will have access to do. So my default, my SSV global team, has edit access. I can make sure they only have read only access, or no access to this site, in particular.

                              But this is where you can add exception, as well. So we have a lot of admins on our account, but if you had team members or anyone else that you didn’t want to have access to that site, you can create individual exceptions. So you have the overall permissions, such as SSV global team having edit access. But if I wanted to create exceptions to that rule, such as Lisa, who is part of the SSV global team, I didn’t want her to have edit access, but read access, instead, I can add that into the dual exception and that’ll show here on the bottom right, as well. That is a great question.

Laura Newell:       A deeper question. Am I structuring things incorrectly? I was thinking that a site should just be limited to a single address. But is it unrealistic to limit guest users to five sites? So maybe a site is actually just like an organization and each survey has a specific address?

Sean Petty:            So you can structure things a little bit different. It’s different for a lot of different use cases. So let’s talk about Allen High School. Allen High School is one of the largest high schools in the nation. And it may be spread apart by different addresses. You can create sites that have multiple addresses in them. It’s just going to show one address here at the top. But I like to think of site almost like projects, sometimes.

                              So if you’re working on an entire city block, you can create that as a site and have your individual addresses within your surveys and just know that you have one main address for that site. you can do that as needed. But it’s just all on how you structure them.

Laura Newell:       Can you explain how the release edit thing works again? Whenever I try to collaborate, I run into the issues of people requesting edits, releasing edits.

Sean Petty:            I love this analogy when it comes to requesting and editing access within System Surveyor. So you have edit access – and I’m going to go ahead and release this really quick just to show. Whenever someone hits request edit on a survey, think of it like checking out a library book from the library. You are checking out that library book. You’re the only person who is now able to read that physical copy of that book. So if I request edit access, I’m the only person that can go in and edit that survey until I release it. Releasing edit takes that book back to the library and puts it back on the shelf for other people to work.

                              Now, this sometimes runs into a pretty common situation. What if I forget to release my edits before I leave? Let’s say I go on a three-week vacation and I forget to release my edits? Not to worry. Your admins can go through and if you forget to release an edit they have access to do what’s called revoke access. So on the three dots, here, on the bottom right and on every survey tile, you’ll have revoke survey edit. So you admin, if they need to, they can release that.

                              Think of it kind of like phasing. So if I’m working on a survey, and I’m doing my work, I request edit access. If someone already had access to it, it basically sends them an email that says, “Hey, someone has requested edit access, please release it.” Once I’m done with my work, I can release it for the next person to then do their work. That way, you don’t run into the too many cooks in the kitchen, with too many editors on one survey.

Laura Newell:       And if I was in control of the survey, you could request it from me, instead of just revoking it, too, correct?

Sean Petty:            Absolutely. So [Maureen ? 00:21:44] is in control of this duplicate sample survey. I can request survey edit and it will send her an email that says, hey, so and so has requested edit access, please release the survey.

Laura Newell:       Great. What level subscription is required for team permissions?

Sean Petty:            With this one, I believe it is scale and above. Laura, correct me if I’m wrong.

Laura Newell:       That’s correct. Scale and enterprise. You guys keep the questions coming in if you have any more. With that, Sean, if you want to pop back over to the PowerPoint.

Sean Petty:            Sure.

Laura Newell:       As always, don’t forget that we do have our manufacturer partners. System Surveyor is a partner of Agnostic Platform. We’ll take any and all. So if you guys have any manufacturers that you’re working with that we don’t currently have listed, here, send them our way by going to our partners page and telling us that they’re ready for us. “Any word on access, yet?” I’m not sure. I think we’re still talking to them, but we don’t have all of their element profiles, yet. It’s in the works, I believe. But I’ll get back to you on that one.                    

                              Then, you know, all of our webinars are listed on our learning center, which you can find on our website. You’ll see previous webinars, upcoming webinars. This one will be posted afterwards if you need a refresher course. And then Avigilon. I do think we are also in discussions with Avigilon, but if you also want to send them our way or give your manufacturer over there at Avigilon a little tap on the shoulder and say, “Hurry up,” that would be great. Sean, I’ll let you wrap it up, here.

Sean Petty:            First off, I want to thank everybody for coming to today’s webinar. If you have any questions about what you’ve heard today, or you just have any general questions about System Surveyor, please feel free to reach out to us. You can reach me here individually or you can reach out to Also within the System Surveyor tool, at the bottom right of ever page, you’re going to see a chat bubble. You can reach our team there, as well. If you’d like to schedule a demo, or you want to learn a little bit more or have anyone that is interested within System Surveyor or what that System Surveyor, you can always have them shoot as an email at to get a demo scheduled.

Laura Newell:       Great. Thank you, again, for joining us. Keep your eyes peeled for our recording and I will send that by the end of the day. Thank you so much. Bye-Bye.