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Case study

Traka key management system protects students at California State University Channel Islands
The joint implementation process of the 24 Traka products consisted of pre-research, installation and full implementation of procedures before going live
CSUCI chose Traka for its robust and durable products and ability to integrate with CSUCI's smart card systems

Ensuring students and assets are protected around the clock with Traka's advanced key management systems.

Colleges and other educational facilities all over the world face unique challenges when it comes to key management and asset protection. Campuses of all sizes combine a number of valuable assets under their watch, including multiple facilities, thousands of students, hundreds of employees, as well as vehicles, machinery and more.

No matter the campus size, electronic key management can be critical to risk management and loss prevention for schools. Faculties and staff are often in charge of different keysets, making organisation and accountability a challenge, as well as increasing risk of misplacement, damage and other issues.

For California State University Channel Islands (CSUCI), the common problems of campus key management became a reality, including low control, misplacement and more. Close to 5,000 students at the university were at a higher risk of being affected by damage, vandalism and theft due to possible key misplacement. With an expected growth of over 10,000 in the next decade, a solution to these issues was an absolute necessity.

Lacking control with a conventional key system

"We needed more control over our master keys used by facilities staff and campus police, along with reducing the level of keys held by staff on a daily basis."

The university was experiencing several challenges involving facility keys. In one instance, a staff member lost control of a great grand master key (GGM), leaving students, faculty and other employees in danger with no restricted access.

These issues became more prevalent as the school was already in the process of a costly rekey, which was to begin with residence areas in effort to protect students. The university was experiencing a number of problems, leading to the need for a complete key management system, including:

  • Misplacement of master keys
  • Lack of overall control
  • Limited access restrictions
  • Low efficiency
  • Risk of damage
  • No storage processes

With many of the university staff in control of master keys, the school identified a goal of removing them from individuals on staff. Using a complete key management system would allow them to secure keys, protect assets and control access with compete efficiency and without undergoing the costs of expensive electronic access control options.

The college explored many key control options, including mechanical key traps and adding GPS devices to key rings. Ultimately, the capability and compatibility of Traka's software with the campus' existing system was crucial in the decision, allowing staff to import personnel lists for a painless transition. CSUCI utilises a smart card system for students on campus for transactions, transit and dorm access through keypads and card readers. Traka's robust and durable products, as well as the ability to integrate with these smart card systems were all deciding factors for university staff.

Meeting campus needs with Traka key management

To solve their key management issues, the school looked to install 24 key cabinets distributed throughout the campus, allowing more flexibility while still being controlled and maintained at a centralised location. Each individual cabinet would allow for a number of benefits, including:

  • User and time-specific controls
  • Monitoring
  • Auditing of key reports
  • Key transaction tracking
    CSUSI is planning to implement more Traka solutions, including additional cabinets for new facilities and potential locker solutions
    CSUCI utilises a smart card system for students on campus for transactions, transit and dorm access

The joint implementation process of the 24 Traka products consisted of pre-research, installation and full implementation of procedures before going live. Traka assisted with specific designations for campus facilities, key management planning, designating access to important keys, as well as highlighting auditing specifications for the system.

Now live, Traka systems are completely managed by just two university employees. A simple installation and training process allowed the school a smooth transition with more capabilities and accountability than ever before, as Traka support is there every step of the way.

Total control, key tracking and asset protection

"The main benefit of using Traka has been peace of mind of knowing where our high level keys are at any given time"

After the simple transition was complete and employees were up to speed, the Traka processes have been greatly welcomed, with instant improvements in control and asset protection on campus. An initial hesitation from some staff members occurred because they believed the new system would slow things down and some felt uncomfortable with change. However, once the solution provided the staff with streamlined, efficient key management and asset protection, there was a strong reception for Traka.

Throughout the campus facilities, there's now an extra sense of calm knowing high level keys are monitored and tracked at all times with Traka. Other major benefits include greater restriction on heavy equipment keys, as only staff with proper training is able to gain access to the machinery.

The school also enjoys time saving and less downtime with Traka implementation. For example, vendors and others who need lower level keys now can now check them out without assistance during drop-offs and other situations.

Given the increase in control and safety on campus, CSUSI is planning to implement more Traka solutions, including additional cabinets for new facilities and potential locker solutions to help control assets such as laptops and tablets with the same software. In the future, the college will continue to add cabinets as they plan to have one in every building on campus.


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