Biometric time and attendance
Plasco ID, global integrator of identification solutions, announces it has hired Jeff Bill as its Chief Operating Officer. Bringing a valuable combination of industry experience and proven results, he will focus on business operations and strategic initiatives. Physical card access control A veteran in visual and physical card access control, Jeff formerly held the position of President at Bristol ID, global technology card business; prior, he served as General Manager for Brady’s Peopl...
Matrix Comsec, a pioneer of technologically advanced security and communications solutions, is preparing to spread its footprints in the Canadian market. Security and communication solutions Matrix is renowned enterprise and each of their solutions are designed and manufactured in the company’s exclusive DSIR (Department of Scientific and Industrial Research) certified Research and Development Center. More than 40% of the company’s manpower is dedicated to the development of c...
Reading-based IT security company, VoiceVault Ltd. specialising in voice biometrics has entered administration after experiencing future funding issues. Its business and assets are now up for sale. Voice biometrics specialist firm VoiceAuth - Complete Voice Biometric SaaS platform supporting both cloud and on-premise deployment Voicevault Limited entered administration on 8 October 2018, with Andrew Stephen McGill & Gilbert John Lemon of Smith & Williamson appointed joint administrator...
Security Essen 2018 presented itself as the international source of inspiration for the industry. 950 exhibitors from 43 countries showed their innovations for increased safety and convenience to over 36,000 trade visitors from 125 nations at Messe Essen on topics ranging from cyber security to innovations for building security and new solutions for the protection of valuables. The representatives of the companies, associations and institutions were in great demand as discussion partners. There...
COSEC VEGA FAX is engineered with careful blend of aesthetics, size, connectivity, reliability and ease of use for modern enterprises. It is a perfect fit for Access Control and Time-Attendance solution for modern organisations. COSEC VEGA FAX Moreover, COSEC VEGA FAX is an open system allowing integration with third party hardware. Using auxiliary input and output ports, Fire Alarm system and Video Surveillance system can be connected without any need for external hardware modules. Motion sen...
Matrix Comsec is to participate in the NPPC (National Pharmacy Preceptors Conference) 2018. Matrix will be exhibiting their communication and security solutions along with other enterprise grade solutions. IP solutions for modern enterprises From the Telecom domain, Matrix will be exhibiting the newly launched pure IP solutions for modern enterprises - PRASAR UCS and the smart video IP deskphone - SPARSH VP710 at the event. The company will also be exhibiting SARVAM UCS and Media Gateways. So...
Security, flexibility, and comfort – that is what LEGIC stands for. The Swiss security company displays their range of highly secure ID and IoT applications at security essen, which takes place from September 25 to 28, 2018. Secure-only – that is LEGIC’s motto at this year’s trade fair – whether it applies to access control, time tracking, electronic transfers, mobility or smart cities. LEGIC secures all components of its technology platform with state-of-the-art security standards and guarantees that they will always be up to date. At our trade fair booth, we will explain how you can make your ID and IoT projects user-friendly – from the planning stage to implementation – with help from LEGIC, current cryptography and IT security. Simpler and more secure Do you already know about the new communication standard for secure access readers and IoT devices? The reader ICs of the LEGIC 6000 series are unique in the world. They combine the highest security, all communication standards including BLE (new: compatible also with HID iCLASS on 13,56MHz), and a secure element – all in an incredibly compact 8 × 8 mm housing! We are looking forward to presenting our newest IC generation to you. With our LEGIC Orbit key management, we set new standards for security of your mobile ID and RFID applications. Are you interested in finding out more? Come and visit us at the trade fair – Hall 3, Booth 3F30 – and have fun using our arcade machine to discover how LEGIC can make your ID and IoT projects simpler and more secure!
Matrix Comsec, a manufacturer and provider of telecom and security solutions, is participating at IISE, Delhi, India, from 5th-8th October 2018. Matrix will be showcasing its Video Surveillance and People Mobility Management solutions at the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers. Matrix offers an enterprise grade video management solution designed, engineered and built specifically for growing multi-location organisations. The entire solution focuses on automating processes and enhancing efficiency of organisations. Providing centralised control Matrix Video Surveillance aims at providing centralised control over all the locations along with well-crafted user defined roles and rights, to fulfill complex needs of multi-hierarchy organisations. Furthermore, moving away from traditional reactive security, advanced video analytics with real-time notifications provide organisations with preventive security, protecting your premises from all vulnerabilities. In addition to that, Matrix Video Surveillance is an open platform system, which integrates with all third party software, increasing an organisation’s capabilities manifold.Matrix will also demonstrate its range of biometric access control and time-attendance solutions and its advance applications during IISE Matrix will also demonstrate its range of biometric access control and time-attendance solutions and its advance applications during IISE. Mobile being the next generation technology in terms of security, Matrix will display its ‘Your Mobile is Your Identity’ solution. Automatic device identification In mobile based access control, user either scans the QR code through his/her mobile or just twists the mobile to get access using Bluetooth. Furthermore, Matrix will also be showcasing its AEBAS solution specifically designed for the ease and management of Government organisations along with COSEC DOOR FMX - a high-performance door controller with Multispectral fingerprint sensor. “During this exhibition, we will demonstrate our latest enterprise grade access control and video management solutions with real-time features such as Auto Push Events to Server, Intelligent Video Analytics Instant Notification, Automatic Device Identification and many more”, said Ganesh Jivani, CEO and Managing Director, Matrix Comsec. Matrix looks forward to meeting customers and prospective system integrators at IISE India 2018 to be held in Pragati Maidan, Delhi from 5th-8th October 2018 to discuss requirements and offer better solutions.
In today’s era of globalisation, it is important to have talented and skilled employees in different locations. To significantly improve field operation, managing and analysing your team deployed in the field is a key task. Whether it is logistics, hospitality, construction or retail industries, it is essential to have effective communication with workers to keep up their morale and for better planning of field employees. With the traditional system, it becomes a herculean task to manage remote employees. Matrix COSEC Field Visit Management Matrix COSEC Field Visit Management is a comprehensive web-based field employee’s portal. It involves management of field employee’s activities and of Field Tasks carried out by employees under various Field Schedules. It provides live tracking of field employee schedules via reports with real-time notifications on exceptions. Key Features: Create Schedules of Individual Users Assignment of Daily Work Tasks View Field Visit Status Live Tracking of Schedule Status via reports SMS and Email Notifications on Exception
SmartTask, the provider of employee scheduling and mobile workforce management software, has launched a vetting solution to help security companies meet the stringent requirements of the BS7858 vetting standard. SmartTask Vetting has been designed to ensure that security service providers are not overlooking this essential staff screening requirement, while following a consistent and approved process. “We recognised a growing need for sophisticated and streamlined vetting procedures, especially as businesses are facing increasing demands from legal regulations such as 10 year working history, DBS checks, right to work and GDPR,” explains Paul Ridden, CEO of SmartTask. “As a result, we have designed the most comprehensive vetting, background checking and pre-employment screening compliance solution currently available for the security sector.” This will enable businesses to deliver straightforward and repeatable procedures that capture employee details Capture employee details The fully integrated tool will simplify and automate the complicated process of vetting employees. This will enable businesses to deliver straightforward and repeatable procedures that capture employee details, ensure they are tested, have the relevant history and confirm they have the skills required. It will also ensure that employees are made aware of any health and safety risks, as well as confirm they have signed the appropriate documentation to verify they have been trained to undertake the work. Failed screening processes Security businesses will now be able to undertake thorough background checks that meet the necessary standards – including BS7858 – so they are not vulnerable to the costs and risks associated with failed screening processes. This will allow them to meet contractual expectations of new and existing clients, safely providing a range of personnel, based on the nature of a location or required security clearance. SmartTask Vetting will also remove the need to store paper copies of certificates and identification documents, with everything now stored electronically alongside the vetting record. It is even possible to use the camera in a smartphone or tablet to capture copies out in the field. The cloud-based software solution combines intelligent rostering, live monitoring and integrated proof of attendance across both static and mobile teams Improve operational control “By possessing the ability to manage employee onboarding – from the most basic skills requirements to highest levels of screening – security services providers can ensure that all employees are bonafide. This will enable these organisations to offer a very competitive and potentially greater value service to customers, while keeping employees happy, achieving added peace of mind and reducing administrative overheads,” adds Ridden. SmartTask is an advanced and simple-to-use employee scheduling and mobile workforce management solution that enables security companies to better plan and manage their workers, so they are at the right place, at the right time. The cloud-based software solution combines intelligent rostering, live monitoring and integrated proof of attendance across both static and mobile teams, making it the ideal tool to improve operational control, enhance customer satisfaction, and support duty of care to staff.
Matrix, manufacturer and believer of ‘Made in India’ Telecom and Security solutions, has been a host of a number of its maiden event Insight. This event has been conducted and used as a platform to spread the company’s reach in different markets, getting in touch with partners and prospective system integrators. Matrix Insight Indonesia 2018 Matrix is all set for yet another Insight event in Indonesia. The event will be hosted at the Shangri-La Hotel, Kota BNI, Jln. Jend. Sudirman Kav. 1, Jakarta on the 13th of September 2018. Matrix will be highlighting its Unified Communication solution, IP phones and Universal Media Gateways at the event, giving a brief on each for the attendees. They will also be introducing the recently launched Pure IP Solution for Enterprises – PRASAR UCS at the event. Time-Attendance and access control solutions In the Time-Attendance and Access Control domains, Matrix will be exhibiting the Multispectral Fingerprint Reader. This reader reads two layers of a finger, surface and the subsurface, making it an efficient fingerprint reader. Moreover, it reads a user’s finger even if they are dirty, oily, wrinkled, etc. Along with this the award-winning Visitor and Cafeteria Management solutions will also be explained by the solution experts. Additionally, there will be a briefing on their Time-Attendance and Access Control solutions at the event. From the Video Surveillance domain, Matrix will be highlighting its Professional Series of IP Cameras and recently launched Extreme Series of Network Video Recorders (NVRx). A brief will be given on how centralised monitoring works with the Video Management Software. The company will also be explaining how multiple NVRs can be connected for monitoring cameras without a server.
Matrix Insight 2018, an inaugural edition of Enterprise Solution Meet was organised in Riyadh, on July 26, 2018. Matrix unveiled its recently launched new NVRX Series and PRASAR UCS for Modern Enterprises. Numerous technology evangelists were a part of this one day event. During the event, Matrix showcased time-attendance and access control solutions that help escalate productivity and security of SMEs, SOHOs and large enterprises. Matrix exhibited enterprise grade time-attendance solutions rigged with real-time features such as Auto Push Events to Server, Instant Notification, Automatic Device Identification, Scheduler Services for Report and Backup, and more. In addition to this, Matrix’s high-end cloud based solution, COSEC VYOM – People Mobility Management solution also gained much appreciation. It is a smartly designed cloud based system that uses services deployed on a cloud server. Unified Communication Solution Pioneer in Telecom domain, Matrix unveiled its recently launched PRASAR UCS - Unified Communication Solution for modern enterprises that supports up to 2,100 IP users from a single box at the event. “We are happy to receive a huge footfall of visitors at our event. The interactions we had at the event have given us proper insight of the customers’ requirements, which we will be using to draft our future sales and marketing strategies for the region,” concluded Ganesh Jivani, Managing Director, Matrix.
It began with a desire to help students fit in. Officials in Maine School Administrative District (MSAD) 58 introduced uniform bar-coded plastic ID cards to replace their existing colour-coded punch cards so that students eligible for free lunches would not easily be identified by their friends. “In the past, students used punch cards to buy their lunches,” said Angel Allen, Technology Director for both MSAD 58 and neighboring district, MSAD 9. “The different colors identified their economic status for other students to see. It was not a good thing.” Some students chose not to eat rather than be embarrassed by the color of their card. The issue is a significant one. Between 40 and 60 percent of students in MSAD 58 qualify for a reduced lunch program, according to Allen. The district, which sits in a rural area of Franklin County, Maine, covers 500 square miles and serves 1,000 students through five schools. Using ID cards was not new to the Maine school administrators. Sister district, MSAD 9, had been using ID cards as visual identity for its staff for a long time, according to Allen, but “the old system was a beast.” Direct-to-Card Printer/Encoder MSAD 58 began using ID cards printed on a new Fargo DTC300 Direct-to-Card Printer/Encoder for the hot lunch program in the fall of 2005, with the lunch director printing the cards. A second printer was purchased in 2006 and is operating out of the superintendent’s office to create staff ID and lunch cards. MSAD 58 continues to expand its use of ID cards: It created a debit system in which parents can apply money to the card so their children can charge against it rather than carrying money to school. ID cards without photos are used for substitute teachers, volunteers and parents who enter the schools. Students and faculty can check out library materials using their ID cards. Students without drivers’ licenses have even used their school ID cards for identification on school trips. In 2006, thanks to her experience in MSAD 58, Allen added a Fargo DTC400 printer to MSAD 9 Building access solutions “We also use the ID cards as medical emergency cards,” said Allen. “They are particularly useful on field trips to identify students with allergies, diabetes or asthma and to provide emergency contact numbers.” In 2006, thanks to her experience in MSAD 58, Allen added a Fargo DTC400 printer to MSAD 9. The district is printing RFID cards for staff ID and building access. There is also a DTC300 for the student lunch program. “My experience in MSAD 58 introduced me to Fargo,” said Allen. MSAD 9 includes nine schools and serves 2,500 students. Here, the ability to print on two sides of a card was important, as administrators wanted a bar code on the back to work with the district’s time card system and door access program. In addition, the district is initiating a new lunch program, and a library program is in the works. Software integration “In MSAD 58, we began printing small, key chain ID cards from perforated card stock,” said Allen. “Each includes the student’s name and a bar code. Being able to carry their ID card on a key chain helps prevent students from losing their cards.” Nevertheless, a $1 replacement fee is charged each lost card, although the fee was never meant to build revenue. “It’s just enough to aggravate the students,” Allen said. TAll students carry the same plastic ID card. Information on their lunch status is contained in a bar code on the back of the card. “Now, everyone has the same card,” said Allen. “The bar code number is scanned into the cafeteria software, and only the computer can distinguish who is eligible for a reduced lunch from those who are not.” Fargo printers are well known for their ability to print bar codes with the level of clarity to be read by scanners Student ID cards “The big thing with schools is technology,” said Jennifer Clancy, ID Wholesaler Marketing Manager (www.idwholesaler.com), who sold Allen the printers. “In Angel’s case, she is creating a system where the student ID is a stored-value card for the lunch program using a bar code. Fargo printers are well known for their ability to print bar codes with the level of clarity to be read by scanners. Schools nationwide are instituting policies where a visible ID is required of students, faculty and staff at all times. With a visible ID, there is no excuse for a person to be somewhere he or she is not supposed to be. Individuals can be better identified and dealt with by the existing school protocols.” Requirements for the ID cards differ between high school and elementary school students. High school students are required to carry their ID cards at all times. In the elementary schools, students grab their ID cards from a rack on the wall outside the lunch room each day before lunch. Cards are scanned by the cashier and put back in a basket, so someone can replace them in the rack after lunch. “Younger kids can’t be responsible for remembering to bring their card every day,” Allen said. School security system Employees, especially those with multi-school assignments, such as administrators, supervisors, plant operations, maintenance, food service and transportation personnel are required to display their identification card at all times when performing duties for the school system. “Schools that have a student photo ID program in place are starting to expand the use of the cards to applications such as library checkout, lunch program management, equipment checkout, access to computers, student activity passes and bus access,” said Clancy. “More advanced schools are moving to cashless vending, lunchroom use or activity attendance.” Allen, who is responsible for the technology in both MSAD 58 and MSAD 9, envisions expansion of the ID card program, especially the RFID technology component for access control. “We try things in one place and then take them beyond,” she said. “That’s the cooperative nature of our districts.” But for now, simply using ID cards to help students fit in during lunch is a huge step forward.
Varsity Management is an innovative education system focused on learning and leadership. Varsity offers well-designed courses plans that are in sync with the state and national board curricula. Based on the re-engineered learning patterns, these plans help teachers provide multisensory learning and develop social and thinking skills in students. Varsity Management is empowering 3,85,000+ students annually with its presence across 465+ schools, PAN India. Recording accurate attendance data The main requirement of the organisation was to bring its time-attendance under the same network umbrella. Varsity Management Pvt Ltd wanted to manage time-attendance of more than 15,000 employees at 100+ locations across India. Initially, they were using traditional methods for attendance marking. As a result, they were facing many problems in maintaining records of the same. Hence, they required an efficient system for maintaining and recording accurate attendance data of staff members. They required a biometric hardware solution that could precisely capture employees’ attendance. Moreover, they needed instant SMS notifications for certain events like missing in/out punch, attendance summary, etc. Matrix meticulously studied the needs of Varsity Management along with its regional partner Vigilant Technologies Time-attendance management solution Matrix meticulously studied the needs of the institute along with its regional partner Vigilant Technologies. Having discussed in depth with Varsity’s team, Matrix offered its comprehensive Time-Attendance solution for managing and tracking staff movement from a single place. Matrix has installed 130 COSEC DOOR FOT V3 biometric time-attendance terminals at 100 locations across India. HR/Admin could easily track attendance of all employees and generate different types of reports for timely salary payment. Now users are updated instantly on different events like missing in/out punch, attendance summary, etc. when it occurs. Benefits of biometric time-attendance terminal Centralised Monitoring and Control Efficient Time-Attendance Management Quick and Easy Salary Calculations Improved Productivity Customised Reports
Dayton Public Schools (DPS) covers about 53 square miles in Dayton, Ohio. The school system is comprised of 30 school buildings and special centers with approximately 15,000 students in pre-kindergarten through high school. An urban district, DPS brings innovative students and teachers together to develop productive citizens ready to serve their communities. Core to achieving their mission is ensuring first, that students arrive at their school and at their classes, on time and ready to learn. DPS had a wide variety of, and in some cases a lack of, ID system capabilities throughout the district. This made it difficult to implement standard process improvements that would speed the creation of new IDs at the beginning of each school year. Additionally, DPS needed to expedite the check-in of tardy students thus allowing them to arrive at their classes faster. For managing tardy students, the schools traditionally used manual processes with handwritten passes which were inefficient and caused unnecessary delays if multiple students came to school late. Seeking to streamline processes, the school district realised that it needed to institute a universal, mandatory student ID system that allowed them to improve student attendance across the district while enhancing the security of its students and visitors. PlascoID card-based management system PlascoID showed DPS HID’s FARGO desktop card printers and their automated student management system, PlascoTrac, as a possible solution to the challenges the school system was facingWhile attending the Ohio eTech conference in early 2011, DPS learned about PlascoID, an authorised HID Global FARGO integrator and global provider of card-based ID systems. PlascoID showed DPS HID’s FARGO desktop card printers and their automated student management system, PlascoTrac, as a possible solution to the challenges the school system was facing. Because the printers and software integrated seamlessly with eSchoolPlus, the school system’s existing Web-based student-information system, DPS selected PlascoID to help streamline its attendance processes. Genuine HID products including the DTC4500 card printer/encoder, non-technology cards and Asure ID Enterprise card personalisation software were recommended by PlascoID to support the creation of efficient, multipurpose IDs. HID Global’s Asure ID software would enable the school system to create customised student ID cards while the DTC4500 printers would allow campus officials at each school location to instantly issue all student IDs. The printer’s modular design and small footprint were also ideal features for the school environment where space is at a premium. Asure ID enterprise software Prior to the start of the 2012 school year DPS implemented the solution over the course of just two weeks, installing the PlascoTrac system with 31 DTC4500 printers and Asure ID Enterprise software so it could be used on the first day of the new academic year. With the new DTC4500 printers and Asure ID software, DPS can now: Print a high volume of cards at fast print speeds: Every year, 15,000 IDs are needed by DPS in just the first week of school. The DTC4500 meets this challenge by quickly and reliably producing large quantities of cards with high-quality images. Able to withstand the day-to-day wear and tear by students these new IDs are now also uniform in image quality, design and durability. Save money and training time: The modestly priced DTC4500 has an intuitive set up and is easy to use. Already optimised for organisations like DPS, the printer is a high-security, high-performance ID issuance system that doesn’t require large capital investments or extensive training by system operators. Prepare for future ID card needs: The DTC4500 is field upgradeable. As their student ID system changes and evolves, DPS can modify their printers to fit new requirements. Achieve multiple uses with a single software application: With Asure ID Enterprise software, DPS is able to easily design card templates, enter student data and create photo ID badges. Additionally, Asure ID’s LiveLink capability enables the schools to sync student ID badge data with attendance data in PlascoTrac, and with student records in eSchoolPLUS. PlascoTrac card ID system The newly designed DPS student ID is a white card featuring the district’s logo and mission statement With this combined solution from PlascoID and HID Global, DPS can now easily and quickly provide all students with IDs during the first week of the new school year. And when a student loses his or her badge, or is newly enrolled in school, a new ID can be created and issued that same day. The newly designed DPS student ID is a white card featuring the district’s logo and mission statement. New visual security elements include a large color photo of the student and his/her name printed in large font on the front of the card, so school personnel can easily identify individuals. Additionally, the ID now includes a barcode that is used in conjunction with the PlascoTrac system. So, when a student arrives late to school or is tardy to a class, they are scanned into PlascoTrac and a tardy pass is printed automatically. HID's Plasco ID cards With this brand-new student ID system, processing tardy students now takes 25 to 35 percent less time than before, enabling DPS students to spend more time in class while reducing the administrative burden of its staff. Some schools have even tied the new ID cards to their media centre In addition to addressing their original challenges, DPS has now found that the new HID and Plasco ID card solution gives them even greater functionality and versatility. Some schools have even tied the new ID cards to their media centre for checking out books or documenting lunches purchased in the cafeteria. Elementary schools are even exploring ways to use the IDs to encourage positive reinforcement of good behaviors. HID Global card issuance/PlascoTrac solution “We are extremely satisfied with how adaptable the solution is on a per-school basis,” said Richard Melson, director of The Office of Information Technology at Dayton Public Schools. “Initially the principals had one vision of how things were going to work and now that they have the technology in their possession, they each use it a little differently based on specific needs of their school.” In the near future, DPS expects to expand its use of the HID Global card issuance/PlascoTrac solution to keep track of visitors. Currently the district provides printed temporary ID passes, but it plans to eventually incorporate scanning of government IDs, such as a driver’s license, before granting visitors entry.
JK Tyre & Industries Ltd. have its biggest manufacturing setup in Mysore. The premise consists of a manufacturing unit as well as the administrative department. Since the plant runs 24×7 and there are numerous shifts of workers, they found it difficult to manage multiple shifts manually. Managing visitors was also a problem for the company. So, they required a software that would help them keep a record of visitors on time-to-time basis. Creating a visitor’s identity in the form of visitor pass and generating reports of visitors on a monthly basis was a tiresome process. JK Tyres was looking for a vendor who could offer them a complete solution related to Time-Attendance and Visitor Management. Matrix offered a Time-Attendance solution, which centrally handled multiple shifts of workers and employees Matrix Time-Attendance solution Matrix offered a Time-Attendance solution, which centrally handled multiple shifts of workers and employees. Numerous shifts were created to manage Time-Attendance of over 500+ workers. Moreover, we provided Employee Self Service, which helped the employees view day-to-day attendance, apply for leave/tour, etc. JK Tyres further required a record of visitors so we delivered Visitor Management software, which helped them create a visitor pass, fetch visitor records and generate reports of the same. 40% Increase in Productivity of Employees and Workers Results Reduction in Cumbersome HR tasks Automatic Maintenance of Visitor Records on Day-to-Day basis 40% Increase in Productivity of Employees and Workers The Products COSEC VEGA FAX - Fingerprint and Card based Door Controller with Touchscreen, IP65, Wi-Fi and 3G/4G Connectivity Option COSEC PATH RDFM - Fingerprint and Card based Exit Reader with IP65 COSEC CENTRA ME - Application Server Platform with 500 Users and Expandable up to 1,000 Users for Basic Access Control and Raw Event Data COSEC ME TAM - Time-Attendance Software Module for COSEC CENTRA ME Users COSEC ME ESS - Employee Self Service Software Module for COSEC CENTRA ME Users COSEC ME VMM - Visitor Management Software Module for COSEC CENTRA ME Users
To reduce the overhead of full-scale manufacturing facilities, a popular practice among design companies and large-scale brand name organisations is to outsource all, or a portion, of their manufacturing operations to specialised contract manufacturers. Using this approach, organisations reduce or eliminate the expenses of specialised engineering labour, equipment maintenance, inventory carrying costs, and product testing facilities while increasing efficiencies such as speed of project delivery and volume of throughput. Based in Cornwall, Ontario, Canadian electronics contract manufacturer, SigmaPoint Technologies, Inc., provides full turnkey, end-to-end assembly services for highly-complex electronic products, and specialises in the Radio Frequency (RF) industry. Customers simply submit their project specifications and design and SigmaPoint sells the customer the components and assembles the finished products. The company relies heavily on a unique high-tech approach using SigmaTrack (a proprietary full-scale Intranet application suite). The state-of-the-art paperless system is used to drive production, quality, supply chain, engineering, sales and reporting. The suite resides on an Adobe ColdFusion MX-enabled web server that further handles all web-based communication. This company-wide network allows employees to communicate interdepartmentally, as well as with customers and suppliers. Improving efficiency and automating job cost tracking SigmaPoint wanted to improve efficiency and automate job cost tracking to more effectively allocate resources for future projects down to the job level" While SigmaPoint provides high-quality engineering manufacturing services, the company had been unable to quantify whether their employee resources were optimally allocated. SigmaPoint employee time and attendance records had been handled manually, with employees turning in manually-recorded, paper timesheets on a bi-weekly basis. This manual system did not allow SigmaPoint to automate timesheet collection via SigmaTrack or keep accurate records on employee time spent on each manufacturing project, and on which tasks. The company needed a system to facilitate data analysis and summarization for estimating future jobs. According to Adam Lauzon, Applications Developer, SigmaPoint, “SigmaPoint wanted to improve efficiency and automate job cost tracking to more effectively allocate resources for future projects down to the job level, and more importantly, to determine more accurate project quotes.” Cost-effective solution to use with existing ID cards Working with Ron Fiedler, Sales Manager of HID Connect Partner, RF IDeas, Inc., Adam specified a simple, cost-effective solution able to piggyback on their existing employee ID card and support future high-frequency RFID technology applications growth—without requiring custom RFID interfacing software programming. To meet this need, SigmaPoint selected RF IDeas’ AIR ID Log-on solution, coupled with HID iCLASS Contactless Smart Adhesive Tags. For improved efficiency and automation, SigmaPoint’s applications developer designed new applications enabled by RF IDeas’ AIR ID Log-on solution with iCLASS tags. They include: A new SigmaTrack Time and Attendance module to automate accurate recording; and Accu-Quote, the new SigmaTrack module responsible for seamless capture of work order labour. SigmaPoint has a contactless smart card with industry-standard encryption technology, reducing the risk of compromised data and duplicate tags To use the new system, the SigmaPoint administrator applies a coin-sized, disk-shaped, self-adhesive HID iCLASS transponder to each employee’s plastic photo ID, laminating it within the card. Instantly, SigmaPoint has a contactless smart card with industry-standard encryption technology, reducing the risk of compromised data and duplicate tags. Enhanced security with 125 kHz proximity technology Additionally, the durable iCLASS tag’s passive, no-battery design allows for an estimated minimum of 100,000 reads. Because they are strong, flexible and resistant to cracking and breaking, SigmaPoint’s investment in iCLASS Adhesive Tags is a solid one. Securely separated application areas in the iCLASS Tags are each protected by 64-bit diversified read/write keys adding enhanced security that would not have been possible with standard 125 kHz proximity technology. Next, using RF IDeas’ AIR ID Writer and AIR ID Card Manager software, the administrator enters each user’s unique SigmaTrack UserID into a secure application area of the iCLASS Tag, automatically encrypting the employee ID data. Using this new system, it is no longer necessary for employees to remember, or even be aware of, their own ID numbers, providing a more secure defence for corporate assets and information. The plug-and-play AIR ID Playback readers simply connect to the employee entrance terminals via USB ‘keyboard wedges’. Automatically tracking over-time, holidays The system also provides SigmaPoint with the capability to automatically track overtime, double-time, holidays and vacation time For capturing work order labour, the Accu-Quote module of SigmaTrack makes the time spent on each element of each project trackable, from the minute the employee logs into the work centre on the production floor. The system also provides SigmaPoint with the capability to automatically track overtime, double-time, holidays and vacation time. All this valuable data is stored in a central database that can be used for sophisticated management reporting. Plus, the timesheet data can be exported to SigmaPoint’s human resources software package. Together, the two systems enable SigmaPoint to determine the most efficient manner to allocate its resources, and correct potential slowdown areas critical to a project’s success. Monitoring employees’ productivity SigmaPoint is now able to automate tracking employee time and attendance records and monitor productivity/time allocation to individual manufacturing projects, streamlining operations. In addition, SigmaPoint upgraded to the benefits of 13.56 MHz iCLASS contactless smart credentials without having to re-badge all its employees, and may consider scalable future applications. SigmaPoint did not have to migrate a database to the new system because it was backwards compatible with the legacy employee ID database. Based on the success of the initial deployment, SigmaPoint soon plans to roll out similar solutions in two of their other facilities, a warehouse and RF testing centre.
Keeping the food supply safe was not an issue for Furman Foods back in 1921, when John W. Furman canned 360 glass jars of tomatoes with his wife, Emma, and their six children. Just as food processing practices have evolved over time, so too has the nation’s approach to securing food processing facilities. Today, Furman Foods uses ID cards as the first step of a greater plan to enhance its plant security. Furman Foods is a family-owned business. By 1969, the company had sold a million cases of tomatoes and was complementing its tomato crop with beans, peppers and other vegetables sold under the Furmano’s name. The company’s roots are planted firmly in the soil of the Susquehanna River Valley of Pennsylvania. Despite this remote location, Frank Furman, Vice President of Quality, is ready to take the facility to the next level of security and quality. “The need is here,” he said. “Everything is coming together at once. Not only does security make good business sense, but it also is something we need to do for our customers.” Food safety and security While the company has focused on food safety for many years, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) Bioterrorism Act of 2002 made security a top concern for food producers such as Furman’s. Title III of the act specifically addresses protecting the safety and security of food and drug supplies. In addition, because Furman Foods provides food for U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) food programs, it is subject to USDA security measures. Security isn’t new to the company. It began incorporating additional security measures shortly after September 2001. The well heads for the water supply are locked and checked daily, for example, and a third-party security service is on duty during off-hours. Delivery truck doors now must be sealed, the company’s computer systems have new access controls in them, and locks now adorn all bulk storage areas, such as those for corn sweeteners and vinegar, some of the most vulnerable areas in the company. An important part of the security system at Furman’s is a new ID card program Time and attendance tracking An important part of the security system at Furman’s is a new ID card program. “We needed to replace our time clocks,” said Mark Slear, Systems Administrator, “so we took advantage of the opportunity to introduce employee ID cards to track time and attendance.” “I wanted some kind of control so that people who don’t work here don’t get in,” Furman said, “Despite the fact that we are located in a rural area, we still were seeing people here who shouldn’t be here. We had to figure out some way to limit access.” In the past, the company had pre-printed, pre-numbered, bar coded cards for hourly employee access. Employees were assigned a number, but that was it. HID Fargo Printer/Encoder Slear and Furman selected the Fargo DTC550 Direct-to-Card Printer/Encoder with lamination capabilities from ID Wholesaler (www.idwholesaler.com), a Fargo Value-Added Retailer and the largest online reseller of photo ID products. “I looked around quite a bit,” said Slear, “and all of my research kept coming back to Fargo.” Furman’s warehouse employees require a stronger card to withstand the everyday wear and tear associated with their active jobs" “We determined that Furman Foods needed a higher level of security than a basic photo ID card could offer,” said Shane Stark, Account Manager, ID Wholesaler. “The FDA keeps tight regulations on who has access to food processing areas. Along with using bar codes and magnetic encoding for security measures, Furman’s warehouse employees require a stronger card to withstand the everyday wear and tear associated with their active jobs. This led us to lamination and a Mylar card, which offers greater durability.” Slear was also interested in the printer’s speed. “When we ramp up during the summer, we produce a year’s worth of product in three months,” he said. “We have to print a lot of ID cards quickly to accommodate our seasonal workers.” Security access cards Furman’s bought the Fargo printer in October, took employee pictures in November and began issuing new ID cards in January. The ID cards contain a full photo, and the program includes all employees, even the extra 300 that are hired during the July-to-October busy season. While tracking time and attendance with the ID cards was the company’s first concern, Slear and Furman were thinking ahead when they chose an ID card printer, knowing that security needs would be enhanced down the road. “We added a magnetic stripe and photo in preparation for future security,” said Slear. “We haven’t defined yet what else we might do, but much of it will be driven by FDA and USDA directives.” “We liked the fact that the DTC550 printer can print on proximity cards if we decide to upgrade our ID cards someday,” said Slear. Furman agreed. “Eventually, we will go to smart cards, especially for the room where our ingredients are mixed,” he said. “We need to limit this area to those who are designated to be there. They will have to swipe an ID card for access. We chose a printer that will allow us to upgrade the cards, knowing that sooner or later we’ll have to go further with security.” Our product and industry knowledge enable us to assess our customers’ needs and present options that meet their requirements" Comprehensive identification solutions “Everything has been going well,” Slear said. “The person printing the cards picked up on it quickly.” Slear gives high marks to ID Wholesaler for their customer service. “Every time I talk to Shane, I get the answers I need,” he said. “He also checks in from time to time, just to see how things are going.” “Our product and industry knowledge enable us to assess our customers’ needs and present options that meet their requirements and their budgets,” said Jennifer Clancy, Marketing Manager, ID Wholesaler. Currently there are three variations to the Furman’s ID cards: yellow background for employees, green background for visitors and blue background for vendors. “Certain vendors are allowed on site without an escort,” said Furman. “For instance, because we are a kosher facility, once a month a rabbi comes in to check our operations. He has his own vendor ID card and is pre-approved, so he can move throughout our facility unescorted.” Facility security One of our big concerns is having someone follow a carded employee into the plant Furman Foods prides itself on its strong values, its quality products, its sustainability and its food security. Yet Furman isn’t satisfied. “We are still not where we should be,” he said. “We have come a long way, but we have a long way to go. If I could wave a magic wand, we would have one entrance, where everybody has to enter and exit. This entrance would be secured by a card reader, so individuals would have to swipe an ID card to get in. One of our big concerns is having someone follow a carded employee into the plant. Restricted areas should require special access cards, and I’d like a fence around the entire facility, with a guard shack where everyone checks in and out,” he further added. Right now, there are multiple entrances for traffic. The facility is very spread out, and the road in front is a public road. Photo ID access card Yet, all agree that the ID cards are an important step on Furman Foods’ journey toward enhanced security. “A safe workplace is fundamental,” said Clancy. “Photo ID cards provide at-a-glance validation that the card wearer is authorised to be on the premises. This is especially important for food manufacturers.” “I tell our employees security is only going to get tighter,” Furman said. “More safeguards will be put in place. We are in the food business. If we don’t have safe foods, we don’t have jobs.”