Published on 23 April, 2014
|Morrisons decided upon a strategy to upgrade each of these vital IT and comms rooms
MOBOTIX AG, a leading manufacturer of digital high-resolution, network-based video security systems has released details of a project at Wm Morrison Supermarkets that is helping to secure access and reduce management complexity across 40 critical sites supporting the retailers “farm to fork” business strategy.
Wm Morrison Supermarkets PLC is a major UK food retailer with over 500 stores across Britain and subsidiaries including Farmers Boy Limited, a manufacturer and distributor of food products; Woodhead Bros, a meat processing business; FlowerWorld Limited, a wholesale flower business and other business interests including multi-channel online retailing.
The company prides itself on its hands on approach to the food distribution chain and in 2008, the newly appointed Data Centre Services Manager, Darryl Shears, began a program to strengthen the resilience and security around its critical IT infrastructure as part of a wider software migration from legacy systems to a unified Oracle based platform.
“We have sites that range from northern Scotland, to Bridgwater in the south west and Sittingbourne in the south east and managing this estate from a centralised team in Bradford is a logistics challenge,” explains Shears, “We need to be able to monitor key comms rooms and IT equipment remotely both proactively to stop any issues from escalating and to react quickly to ensure any problems are dealt with effectively.”
"The MOBOTIX solution, especially the
hemispheric technology allows us to
use just one or two cameras to cover
single or multiple rooms with the
resolution and reliability we required"
To this end, Morrisons decided upon a strategy to upgrade each of these vital IT and comms rooms with environmental monitoring, remote surveillance and remote access control technology. With a requirement for an ultra-reliable, easy to manage yet flexible system, the firm turned to Express Data Ltd, a trusted and long serving technical adviser and installation specialist for assistance.
Following an extensive evaluation programme and based on a number of strong reference site examples, the supermarket group selected a solution including MOBOTIX CCTV cameras, Panduit environmental monitoring and access control technology. “The MOBOTIX solution, especially the hemispheric technology allows us to use just one or two cameras to cover single or multiple rooms with the resolution and reliability we required,” explains Shears, “In addition, the built-in flash storage support means that we can still record the site even if we have a network connectivity issue.”
The team based in Bradford can use the MOBOTIX cameras to view anybody requiring access to a secure room and remotely open doors and monitor any activity within the room. The system has the option for fully bi-directional audio and requires only 5W per camera which aligns with the company’s stated aim to use low energy technologies across its operations.
Over the last 24 months, Express Data has worked with Shears and his team to implement upgrades at an additional 11 sites and created a standard blueprint for the resilience and security at each of the critical sites.
The build includes power redundancy and best practice access procedures with a full visual audit trail. In total, the supermarket has deployed around 140 cameras and, “…as we roll out new sites or make any changes, we now see MOBOTIX as part of our standard build and the system has proven extremely reliable while seamlessly integrating into our other operational systems and processes.”