scDataCom Graduates VIP GROW!


Savannah, January 25: scDataCom recently completed the Veteran Institute Procurement (VIP) GROW Program, a comprehensive training and certification program that helps veteran-owned businesses strengthen their ability to win government contracts and do business with both military and civilian agencies they once served in uniform.

On January 24, 2019, scDataCom was one of 54 businesses from 16 states and the District of Columbia to graduate from the Veteran Institute for Procurement (VIP) GROW Program.

‘I had a fantastic experience at VIP Grow this week and am coming away with contacts, tools, techniques, and confidence to take our business to the next level. The faculty and staff at VIP Grow are truly passionate about slaying obstacles and creating partnerships for Veteran entrepreneurs who are seeking to find and win more work in the Government Contracting space.  Thanks to this experience, we are well equipped to accelerate our successes!” - Kathleen Ford, Chief Executive Officer, scDataCom

The first program of its kind in the nation, VIP GROW is conducted by professional subject-matter specialists in the essentials necessary to win government contracts: law, accounting, insurance, human resources, marketing and proposals. It also provides participants with access to Federal and prime contracting executives along with a national network of veteran owned small businesses that they can team with on opportunities.

Since its launch in 2009, VIP GROW has helped 831 service-disabled and veteran-owned small businesses grow.  A survey of 426 of the program's graduates determined that the size of their businesses increased by an average of 64% within a year of graduating from the Institute. More than 82% of surveyed graduates credited VIP GROW for equipping them to make recent business decisions and avoid unseen pitfalls. Additionally, veteran-owned businesses are more likely to hire, mentor and train other war veterans as they transition to private life, which is a national priority.  

"We are honored to give back to the men and women who served our country by providing them with the tools necessary to succeed as government contractors." said Barbara Ashe, President of the Montgomery County Chamber Community Foundation. “We hope this training fosters their success as businesses and employers.”

VIP GROW is a three-day, 27-hour comprehensive certification program. Participants must be a C-level leader in a Veteran-owned small business operating for at least two years with a minimum of 3 full time employees, and experience working on government contracts as a prime and/or sub-contractor to a prime. With volunteer instructors and at no cost to participants, VIP GROW is fully funded by the Montgomery County Chamber Community Foundation, partners, and VIP sponsors.

For information on VIP: Barbara Ashe, 301-738-0015 x215;

For additional information, please visit or the Montgomery County Chamber Community Foundation.


Should You Install Low Voltage Cables Overhead or Under the Floor?

Under the floor low voltage cabling reduces unsightly cables, but can have a higher total cost of ownership than overhead cabling.  If you have the option of overhead or under the floor cabling for your low voltage cable, overhead cabling can offer as much as 24% energy savings over under-floor cabling give you more aesthetic leeway over flooring choices.

Energy Waste from Under Flooring

There are three ways under-flooring cabling contributes to energy loss :

  • Cables block airflow
    Old unused cables are often left in place when new network or power cables are added under the floor.  These unused cables block air passage and enable hotspots. These cause energy waste.

  • Rack cable cutouts allow bypass of cooled air
    Most cable cutouts are not entirely filled with cabling. The unfilled areas in these cutouts let cooled air escape.  This means that a cooling system will have to use more power to achieve the same cooled temperature.

  • Power distribution units (PDUs) allow bypass of cooled air
    PDUs require a 9-16 square foot opening for installation and removal of conductors. These openings allow air to escape, just as in the rack cable cutouts mentioned above.

Energy Savings from Overhead Cabling

Overhead cabling allows for lower fan losses and lower pump losses.  Victor Avelar of Schneider Electric modeled a hypothetical data center that showed the savings from moving cables to overhead cable trays (see white paper here for details).  Avelar’s model showed that moving cabling overhead lead to a 13% reduction in leakage, reduction of CRAH units from 42 to 31 and an estimated savings of 24% in fan and pump power.

Greater Flexibility in Flooring Materials

Moving away from under the floor cabling allows greater flexibility in flooring options.  Under the floor cabling requires specific structural requirements for flooring setup. Overhead cabling allows buildings more freedom in choosing and designing their flooring. In Savannah, hardwood flooring is often a preferred material for high end real estate like law offices and some university buildings.  Choosing overhead cabling can give a lot more leeway for aesthetic choices in flooring.


Overhead cabling can save money in many low voltage wiring scenarios.  It also enables companies more leeway in making aesthetic choices for their flooring.  While there are still situations where under the floor cabling may be the best option, overhead cabling may frequently offer the largest cost savings.

"Punch it Chewie!" - 4 Reasons to Consider Fiber Optic Cabling

When planning your new network, there are several reasons to consider using Fiber Optic cables.

1) Faster Speeds - “Punch it, Chewie”

Fiber optic cables use light to transmit data - allowing them to carry signals at speeds fast than Cat5, Cat6, or copper cables (and with less signal degradation!) In fact, fiber carries signals at speeds only apx 30% slower than the speed of light.

That’s fast, folks! Even if you’re not a science buff, odds are that you know that light travels pretty darn fast. In fact, light can travel an incredible 186,282 miles per second.

2) Increased Distances

Fiber Optic cables can carry signals much farther than other cable solutions - while the actual distance depends on the style of cable, wavelength and network, standard ranges run from 300meters to 25 miles.

3) Better Reliability

Unlike copper, fiber is unaffected by temperature changes, severe weather, or even moisture. Additionally, fiber doesn’t carry an electric current, so it’s unaffected by electromagnetic interference (EMI) which can disrupt data transmission.

4) Security

Fiber cable is an excellent tool for data protection. It doesn’t radiate signals and is extremely difficult to tap; and, if successfully tapped, it’s very easy to identify the issue quickly because the cable leaks light. If a break is made to the physical security of your fiber system, you’ll know it in real time.

The cheapest (and easiest) way to secure your facility!

We see it every day – customers spend thousands of dollars on cutting edge security systems designed to keep themselves secure, but regularly neglect one of the most important and least expensive aspects of a solid security site plan: Key Control.

Administrating who carries keys and to which doors is vital to site security. It really is that simple.

Keys are so commonplace that we forget how powerful they are – At many worksites keys passed around without ownership or accountability. This results in missing keys, job delays, and costly security breaches. 

A few notable examples:

·      Olympic Venues!

·      Hospitals!

·      Schools!

·      Nuclear Power Plants!

Missing or lost keys can set an avalanche of costly and panicked reactions – having an efficient key control position can help eliminate both the panic and the lost dollars spent re-keying an entire facility. In the event of a security breach, being able to identify exactly which key is lost, and what areas that key has access to, is valuable information.

Keep in mind, even if every exterior opening is kept secure through electronic access control, typically there are additional closets, drawers, cabinets, carts, etc. that still rely on physical keys to keep assets locked and secure.

For most facilities, the root issue of key control is ineffective management. Clearly establishing the importance and significance of key control is the first and most critical hurdle to overcome. Once you’ve designated a person or department who will maintain your Key Control system, there are three critical elements to keep in mind:

1.     Key Administration: Make a log of who carries which keys and which doors those keys open/lock.

2.     Key Numbers: Implement a process of stamping or marking keys and doors to uniquely identify them in your records.

3.     Written ‘Key Use’ Policy: A formal program that describes how keys are to be checked in/check out and duplicated, usually including a signed agreement of policy awareness and understanding by key holder.

Don’t forget, one you have the basics nailed down, scDataCom is here to help you select a more sophisticated security solution that will work hand in hand with your Key Control policy to keep your facility safe.

The Multiple Benefits of Video Surveillance for Manufacturing & Industrial Customers

The Multiple Benefits of Video Surveillance for Manufacturing & Industrial Customers

As Savannah's economy booms, more manufacturing companies are moving their headquarters to the Low Country. Read on to find out how smart Industrial and Manufacturing customers are improving employee safety, enhancing operations, and increasing profits with scDataCom's customized surveillance solutions.

Types of Connectivity for Commercial Customers

Types of Connectivity - Low Voltage for Commercial Customers

Low Voltage Cabling, also known as “structured wiring” refers to the wiring and cabling infrastructure within your business that supports various technologies, such as your alarm, camera and access control systems.  Cabling can sound complicated with multiple types, such as copper and fiber optic cabling, available. There are many options that your low voltage contractor will consider when deciding which materials to use for your low voltage installation. scDataCom’s Low Voltage Experts have decades of industry experience and make sure our clients reap the benefits of our superior knowledge and installation process.

For smaller systems, cables often run from the device (camera, access point, etc) all the way to the head-end – where the cables terminate and the recording server is located. This is ideal for security installations for small business, retail, restaurant or hospitality.

For larger, more complex systems, such as warehouses or large hospitals, distance limitations and/or physical infrastructure will not permit cable runs back to the MDF.

While coaxial cable is typically associated with analog cameras, an IP camera can be used with the addition of media converters, which allow the cable to deliver power and data over coaxial cable.

Unshielded Twisted Pair, or UTP is typically used for indoor installations. It contains four pairs of twisted wire inside a jacket.

Shielded Twisted Pair, or STP, is recommended for outdoor installations. It’s made more durable by adding a foil wrap for EMI (electromagnetic interference) protection and a drain wire to carry surges. Shielding cabling requires a shielded tip to connect the drain wire.

For customers with long-distance connectivity requirements, fiber will be used. Fiber uses pulses of light traveling inside thin glass or plastic tubes to transmit data, making it nearly insusceptible to EMI and power surges. The low attenuation of light traveling through fiber allows data transmission over further distances than twisted pair and the higher frequency of light waves permits greater bandwidth than copper.

Single Mode Fiber (SMF) has a narrow core and permits data to be transmitted over long distances. The narrower core provides less reflections, permitting data to be transmitted over long distances.

Multi-Mode Fiber (MMF) has a wider core and is used for shorter distances.

Wireless cameras can provide a solution over very short distances when a cabling installation may not be possible, like for rental offices or retail stores.

When wireless solutions are desired for larger installations, dedicated radios can provide connectivity between locations.
     ·      PTMP (Point-to-multipoint) extends a network from one source to multiple locations by using an omnidirectional antenna to transmit over wide areas.
     ·      PTP (Point-to-Point) radios extend a network from one location to another using directional antennas.

Pro-Active Surveillance Programs Prevent Loss

Small businesses report millions of dollars lost from theft every day with the leading causes being employee theft (who may believe their frauds are undetectable) or from customers or intruders perpetrating planned or spur of the moment crimes.  Losses from employee theft, POS fraud, cash register theft, shoplifting and supplier fraud are extremely costly and can be severely impactful to a small business. A high quality camera system is a powerful, reliable and cost-effective tool to help business owners protect their assets. Importantly, they can not only a great tool for identifying crooks after the incident, but can also be used to deter criminals and to prevent theft before it happens


Patient and staff safety are an obvious front line concern in any healthcare facility and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has classified workplace violence into three major categories: Criminal Intent, Customer/Client and Worker on Worker.