THE EVOLUTION OF INTELLIGENT KEYS AND EQUIPMENT MANAGEMENT

Driven by Traka, Assa Abloy

In a very fast moving international world, cost reduction and time saving are key points.

Each work environment has their own characteristics and peculiarities. Companies work hard to reduce risk, both in term of health and safety regulation, and also in reducing cost and improve the efficiency.

They all need to manage keys and different portable devices like scanner, tablet, physical keys used by several personnel in multiple locations and have a control over what is happening; but how much time do people waste locating the correct device? How much money is wasted in replacing lost, stolen or damage devices? And how hard it is trying to understand a signature in a log book or who has the devise or a key?

Better planning of business controls and operation compared to traditional processes

Nowadays, in all business area it is essential to optimize capital expense and minimise operational cost to ensure success and be competitive.

Companies are adopting different solutions, optimising staff levels, reviewing administrative costs and carrying out regular stock control checks. Having an efficient and effective key and asset management solution provides better control over process work flow visibility and accountability, while virtually eliminating huge expenses associated with keys and physical security issues.

An Intelligent Key and Asset Management Solution can provide detailed reports on important activities, item status, permissions, utilization and more. This presents better awareness and an opportunity to improve upon the daily processes that drive the business.

In addition, utilization reporting will help companies to understand if they have the correct number of assets, preventing wasteful capital expenditures. Without a fully automated and accountable system of managing these devices, they can become a burden to administration, and impede the efficiencies they were intended to create.

Improving access to physical keys and assets & improve staff’s efficiency

On average, it takes an employee six minutes to find a key, whether it is to open a cabinet to retrieve a piece of equipment or to gain access to a vehicle. Attempts to manage keys usually result in manual interactions, with the key being signed out to an illegible signature./p>

One of the benefits from automating this process with an Intelligent Key Management System is that downtime and lost productivity are significantly minimized, as a key or asset can always be identified and quickly acquired. This gives employees more time to spend on the floor with customers, creating a better customer experience and be highly productive in conducting their responsibilities.

Reduced downtime - How much time do employees spend looking for keys and assets? Let’s assume that in a retail location, 45 minutes are lost per day searching for or trying to gain access to misplaced keys or assets. That equals 274 hours per store, each year, of lost productivity. At the federal minimum wage of $7.25, this comes to $1,986.50 per store per year. That amount of money could be invested towards store improvements, salaries for managers or extra hours for current employees, instead of wasted time.

Consolidating security strategies

Some companies, in order to minimize operational cost, are implementing new technologies such as arm scanner, tablet and other sophisticated technology. However, they get lost, damaged and with the cost of a scanner easily exceeding $ 1,000, having to replace just one device per year at each store could cost millions in losses.

A key and asset management system will provide a complete record of every user transaction. Employees are held 100% accountable for the devices they use. Knowing this fact, employees tend to act more responsibly with company assets, resulting in a significant reduction in damage and loss, as well as better overall utilization.

To further enforce accountability, if a key or asset is not returned within the time period of a set curfew, a notification can be automatically sent to pre-defined managers and end users to alert them of the overdue item. This creates instant visibility of issues that could compromise security, or affect the performance of other employees. Administration time spent checking records, preparing for an audit or coping with security breaches is also reduced, because keys are always available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, without the need for security or management supervision.

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Meeting compliance standards by mitigating risk

Observing the employee behaviour, it has been noticed that when employees are not accountable for company assets, they become less responsible for them. This means that if somebody is leaving the company, he or she would have no accountability in returning the item, and it would not be possible to prove that the employee had possession. This can result in the loss of costly equipment, and the risk of a former employee having keys can compromise security.

Keys are the most used and most overlooked asset in a business. The loss of a key can interrupt daily activities or even expose to risk of losing thousands of dollars in inventory theft. Not only are stores forfeiting the opportunity to control expenses associated with rekeying, they are now susceptible to physical security vulnerabilities if they don’t. Using a key cabinet can allow for the management of all keys, eliminating the need for manual logs riddled with inaccuracies and a true lack of accountability. Administrators who have total control over user access permissions, can identify who has each key set, and can determine access schedules, all from one central location. This minimizes any security threats presented by lost keys, and offers greater visibility over daily operations.

For more information, visit www.traka.com

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