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Systems Integration Enhances Access Management at University

Manual key management, either digital or physical, is a daunting challenge on any campus. After undergoing significant capital projects to modernize and right-size the institution, Roger Williams University, an independent liberal arts university on 140 acres in Bristol, R.I., wanted to become more efficient with key management and security access assignments.



Manual key management, either digital or physical, is a daunting challenge on any campus. After undergoing significant capital projects to modernize and right-size the institution, Roger Williams University, an independent liberal arts university on 140 acres in Bristol, R.I., wanted to become more efficient with key management and security access assignments.

The new buildings, which included an academic building, a dormitory and an admissions and alumni center, were all designed with electronic access and presented an opportunity. By integrating existing but disparate systems, physical security access assignments were automated using a role-based policy engine deployed by Johnson Controls.

Previously, disparate systems required manual programming of access assignments. Now, the Quantum Secure SAFE product serves as an interface between the P2000 security management system and the enterprise resource planning system that houses all the information on where students need to be and when. The system automates approximately 40 percent of security operations at the university.

The P2000 system, installed in 2006, was expanded to the new facilities and now provides access monitoring and control for all 65 buildings on campus. Over 500 card readers and more than 50 surveillance cameras installed across campus are integrated with the system.

In addition to operational efficiency, the identity management solution helps the university maintain and improve internal policies and procedures related to the physical security of all personnel, property and assets. For example, with the new dormitory, the university implemented a five-swipe access policy. Students are required to swipe their card first to access the building, second their floor, third their wing, fourth their suite and finally their room.

"Managing this type of access scheme manually would be astronomical and any errors would quickly be compounded," says William Dallaire, master locksmith at Roger Williams.

Efficient and accurate access control is equally important in the academic buildings to manage assets like computer labs, video editing suites, a multimedia room and green-screen room. The university can also create authorized groups within the system for people such as contractors who will be on campus for a specific period of time.

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