One Database to Rule Them All
Technology has come to change the business world. Firms have employed data in making decisions and shaping the customer experience. However, while data offers a lot of solutions and insights, it also comes with its dilemma. There are different approaches and systems to using data. In this post, the focus will be on the pros and cons of using a single database in a parking and security management system.
Parking management involves a lot of planning and strategy development on how to optimize parking spaces and experience. Using parking software will help parking lots collate data from individuals and control parking spaces inventory. Data is helpful to both the parking management company and the customers. It is even helpful for law enforcement, as it makes their job faster and easier.
Often, we have seen parking management platforms outsource data collation to different third-party sources before integrating them on their platform. At the same time, other parking management platforms collate data from customers in a single database.
Before we proceed, let’s take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of both database systems
Multiple database systems
- It is easier to carry out backups and recover data with multiple database systems. Because the data is sourced from multiple sources, it doesn’t get overwhelming when it is time for backup or recovery.
- Depending on the database design, using multiple database sources could minimize range-level locks even though not all applications can leverage this.
- All the systems might not be affected in case of a data breach or crash
- There is an increased sense of security because each third-party data provider is secure on their levels before applying its security.
- More resistant to crashes
- It isn’t easy to maintain multiple databases, as it is not from one provider. Whatever change you implement will have to be done across the board, which means more stress.
- You have to do separate backups for each database, which means more stress.
- It will cost more, as you will have to pay for each database from each provider.
- It cost less to manage a single database system, as you don’t need multiple providers.
- Maintaining a single database system is more straightforward than handling multiple database systems. It is also slightly easier to get statistics on an application’s usage if they operate a single database system.
- It is easier to develop an administrator application.
- A single database with a single copy of the tables offers more simplicity and flexibility.
- You can easily add new features.
- Managing the application is easier with a single database system.
- The application takes a massive hit during maintenance or loss of database
- It is difficult to take the database offline as it will automatically affect the entire operation of the application.
- The system is more vulnerable to attacks, and the security threats are high.
A parking management platform can either adopt a single solution method or use multiple database systems from 3rd party firms. Whatever system you adopt will depend on how prepared you are for the risks involved in each system.
Let’s check out both systems extensively
Outsourcing to a 3rd Party Parking Management Firm
Several parking management firms outsource their operational department to 3rd party firms. These firms can outsource the system or even the staff on some occasions. They calculate the risks and carefully analyze the ROI before going ahead.
Every few years, the parking management platform evaluates these 3rd party firms to ensure that they generate enough revenue for the business and their operational structure benefits the company. If these firms fail to live up to expectations, they move to another third-party firm or take a different approach.
However, there is the risk that some of these 3rd party firms will not allow the parking management platform to migrate their data, or they mess with it such that it gets difficult to use. In these cases, it costs more to start over both monetarily and stress-wise.
What are the Pros and Cons of using a 3rd party firm?
Pros of using a third Party firm
- You will save yourself the stress of dealing with the parking system or the staff in some cases while you focus on other ways to make the parking platform better.
Cons of using a third Party firm
- It is often difficult to integrate other internal software systems. It is even impossible in most cases.
- You will incur more costs by using 3rd party software and staff, which will affect the revenues that get to the central business.
- In the case of staff, it is often difficult to replace them when there is a performance issue.
- When it is time to renew contracts, it takes more time than needed and sparks unwarranted issues that require more administrative costs.
- End-user experience and consumer satisfaction might be negatively affected by changes in 3rd party collaborations.
- The extra cost of branding when there is a change in 3rd party firms
- Outsourcing your operations to 3rd party firms means they will be dealing with your sensitive data. When these firms have staffing issues, you risk having your sensitive data with a disgruntled staff that is not under your control.
One Database for Parking Management and Enforcement
To drive home this point, we will use ParkAdmin virtual parking permit management software from OPS-COMas a case study.
ParkAdmin virtual parking permit management software fully integrates a single database for its clients and vehicle records. OPS-COM is totally a single database parking platform with no third-party firm involved. With OPS-COM, parking enforcement is smooth, and you can easily access all the data you need from an Android device. Parking patrol staff get full access to check vehicle plates or monitor vehicles through the LPR (license plate recognition) via a custom system automation.
OPS-COM Leverages One Database
- Setup, track, and inventory permits linked to customer profiles and vehicle
- In the field validation of parking compliance and vehicle details
- Issue and track temporary or hourly parking permits
- Detailed transaction audit logs for data edits and payments
- Limit permit registration access by user type and date ranges
- Multiple real-time parking payment models
- Manage permit prices and parking registration records
- Full data logging and audit tracking
- Automated rollover of permits
For parking management companies, it is best to use a single database system or solution without the need for multiple third-party suppliers. This approach improves efficiency and is easier to manage, as seen with the OPS-COM parking and security platform.