With a large campus comprising historic and modern buildings and significant research facilities and equipment, the University of Otago has assets in excess of $1.4 billion (NZD). In 2006, an internal security review of campus facilities identified that a number of critical areas – including laboratories where medical research is conducted on animals and human cadavers – could attain an increased level of security and achieve greater cost efficiency through the installation of Gallagher systems.

A key priority of the security upgrade was to replace the traditional lock and key system in place in facilities across campus with Gallagher’s electronic access control solution. By moving to an entirely electronic system, the University has mitigated the risks associated with lost keys and unauthorised access.

Lost and misplaced cards are reported and immediately deactivated ensuring complete control is maintained over facility access.

Comprehensive alarm monitoring

The team at the University of Otago needed an auditable system, capable of identifying access by people, place, and timeThe electronic system also allows for comprehensive alarm monitoring per door and per freezer, ensuring campus security is immediately notified if a door or freezer has been left open. Gallagher’s Mobile Client, available with the Command Centre v7.30 security management platform, means these alarm notifications can be communicated directly to security personnel’s Apple iPhone devices providing valuable information in real-time, to those outside of the control room.

More than simply managing the access permissions across campus, the team at the University of Otago needed an auditable system, capable of identifying access by people, place, and time. Gallagher’s Command Centre application provides this high-level of traceability and enables the University to quickly and easily extract the exact information required both for internal use and for the regulatory audits required of research facilities.

Identifying who accessed which areas

Due to the nature and value of our assets, it’s critical not just to control who has access to facilities but to be able to identify exactly when areas were accessed and to know who was there,” said Deputy Proctor at the University of Otago, Andrew Ferguson.

Key industry challenges

  • Eliminate the security threat that comes with lost keys
  • Enhance the level of security for critical areas including Medical Research laboratories
  • Procure a solution capable of producing comprehensive audit trails
  • Introduce a secure, automated facilities management system

Gallagher security products installed

  • Command Centre
  • Electronic card readers
  • Syllabus Plus integration

Syllabus Plus integration

Syllabus Plus enables automation in the scheduling and booking of resources and equipment Founded in 1869, the University of Otago is New Zealand’s oldest university. Ranked in the top 200 universities worldwide, the University of Otago is New Zealand’s primary medical tertiary institute and is considered the top research university in New Zealand. The Gallagher system installed at the University of Otago includes a Syllabus Plus integration. Syllabus Plus enables automation in the scheduling and booking of resources and equipment through Command Centre.

The University of Otago team were quick to see value in the opportunity to synchronise their access control system with class time-tables, and subsequently manage room resources by automatically unlocking doors.

Easily search and book resources

A key benefit for the University was a move away from the manual process of entering room bookings into Command Centre. In addition to removing the labour associated with this manual process, the university also found a reduction in the number of booking inaccuracies caused when people changed their plans, as staff can now quickly and independently reschedule their resource and room bookings if their requirements change.

Smart scheduling gives authorised users in our wider team the ability to quickly and easily search and book resources,” said Ferguson. “It’s a genuine time-saver for us and ensures our facilities are managed efficiently.

The university has implemented an ongoing software maintenance agreement with Gallagher

To ensure the University of Otago’s security system remains at the forefront of technology, the university has implemented an ongoing software maintenance agreement with Gallagher to ensure they receive the latest system developments as they are released. “We would never go without software maintenance, it’s imperative that our high-end security be the best it can possibly be,” said Ferguson.

Training for system operators

In addition to ensuring their security products and systems are up-to-date, the University of Otago also ensures their system operators undergo regular training. According to Ferguson, “We arrange annual training with Gallagher for our Campus Watch security team. The training teaches the team valuable tips and tricks on how to utilise the system to its fullest.

During the years since the initial installation of Gallagher security systems, the University of Otago has experienced significant savings associated with not needing to re-key facilities or replace locks when traditional keys have been lost or not returned – maintenance that the University estimates used to cost tens of thousands of dollars each year.

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