The term “Watchman Clock” is used because it was originally designed and used to supervise the patrol activities of night watchmen or overnight patrol personnel. In some security scenarios in the past, watchmen were responsible for night duty, patrols, and protection of property security, and they may not necessarily have the professional experience of security guards. “Security Guard” is trained for a specific job for a specific time, whereas watchmen may or may not have professional training. This may help to better understand the difference between the two.
Although modern patrol management systems are typically referred to as “Guard Tour System” or “Patrol Management System” and have seen more development and advancement in terms of functionality and technology, the term “Watchman Clock” may still be used in certain regions or industries to emphasize its historical background and usage as a tool for night watchmen patrols.
According to Wikipedia, a watchman clock is a mechanical clock used by security guards as part of their guard tour patrol system, which requires regular patrols. The most commonly used form is a mechanical clock system that requires a key for manual punching of a number onto a strip of paper inside with the time pre-printed on it. Management personnel can supervise the work of patrol officers through the clock’s punch card records.
Watchman Clock typically has simple functions, including clock display, patrol point identification, and patrol record storage, which can help supervisors or management personnel monitor the activities of patrol officers, ensuring they arrive at patrol points on time and improve the effectiveness of security work. As a simple and easy-to-use device, Watchman Clock does not require extensive technical operation or training, making it suitable for security personnel who may not be familiar with technology.
Watchman Clock typically uses physical media, such as specific keys, to record information about patrol points (time of arrival). These records can be viewed and analyzed later for supervision and management of patrol activities.
The clock usually has a paper or lightweight cardboard disk or tape, and users would carry the clock to each designated checkpoint with numbered keys (typically attached with a chain at the appropriate location). The key is then inserted into the clock, turned, and the key number is imprinted on the disk. The disk or tape is pre-printed with the time, corresponding to the key number. After a specified time period, authorized personnel (usually a supervisor) would unlock the clock and retrieve the disk or tape, and insert a new one.
This method has limited storage capacity, as it can only record a limited number of patrol points, and requires regular replacement or replacement of physical media, such as paper cards or keys, which may increase management and maintenance costs.
Watchman Clock may require regular maintenance and management, such as battery replacement and paper disc replacement. In addition, for multiple security or patrol personnel’s patrol activities, it is necessary to ensure that each person uses a different Watchman Clock for recording to prevent confusion of records. Watchman Clock typically only allows data collection through card insertion (key) which is relatively limited in data collection methods. Patrol personnel need to physically touch the media with the patrol points, which are usually attached with chains to appropriate locations, making them prone to loss or damage.
Watchman Clock may be suitable for small and simple patrol scenarios, such as small shops, neighborhoods, parks, etc. However, for large and complex security patrol activities, a more advanced patrol management system, such as a Guard Tour System, may be needed to provide a more comprehensive and intelligent patrol management solution. Therefore, when choosing between using a Watchman Clock or other patrol management tools, evaluation and selection should be based on actual needs and scenarios.
A Guard Tour System can achieve automated patrol recording, avoiding errors and missed reports that may occur with manual recording, improving data accuracy and reliability. Furthermore, the Guard Tour System can monitor the location of patrol officers in real-time through technologies such as GPS positioning, ensuring that they patrol according to the designated route and preventing any unauthorized behavior. Additionally, the Guard Tour System can generate detailed patrol reports for management personnel to view and analyze, allowing for better understanding of the officers’ work performance and identifying issues. Moreover, the Guard Tour System can also provide alarm functions, such as abnormal event detection and emergency assistance, to help security personnel quickly respond and take measures in emergency situations.