An Oxford University facility has enhanced its security with the help of a global technology provider of integrated access control, intruder alarms management and perimeter protection.
Saïd Business School, the University of Oxford’s centre of learning for undergraduate and graduate students in business, management and finance, has replaced its former system with an integrated Gallagher Security access control solution to protect it against theft and create a safe environment for visiting dignitaries.
Saïd Business School is located right next to a train station – a heavy transit route into Oxford. While this location is convenient for students and staff, proximity to the station was making it easy for organised thieves to target the school and use the train to get in and out quickly.
As hosts to international heads of state, royalty and others with strict personal security requirements, the school also saw a clear need to upgrade its security system to achieve a higher level of security.
Saïd Business School wanted a system which could meet its need for complete control yet maintain an open and welcoming feel on campus. “We needed to ensure only current employees and students had access to the school, and that those people were only accessing the areas relevant to them,” says Martin Boyt, Estates Operations Manager at Saïd Business School.
“We also needed it to be easy and efficient to manage cardholder permissions, with the flexibility to adapt as the school grows.”
Gallagher T-series readers were installed on doors throughout the building and new access cards were issued to all employees and students. Gallagher Command Centre is used to manage access control groups and set privileges to enable varying levels of access to different parts of the building.
Students and staff can now easily move around the school and access the rooms and resources they need on a day-to-day basis, with confidence they’re safe from unauthorised intruders.
Access control has been integrated with the student and staff induction process, meaning access control cards are not issued until induction has been completed.
The school also uses the new system to issue event and conference visitors with temporary cards that have restricted access suited to the purpose of their visit.
Boyt says protecting their people is of paramount importance. “Schools can be vulnerable to vandalism, theft and, increasingly, violence and terrorism by individuals or groups, so security is a top priority.
“We want our students and staff to have peace of mind that they are studying and working in a safe and secure place.”
Partnering with Gallagher Security and a Gallagher certified security installer streamlined the process of installing the new system. Boyt says working with someone who understood their needs made all the difference.
“Translating the needs of our staff and faculty into workstreams and access control groups was a complex undertaking and having trusted advisors on hand helped us get it right the first time.”
Built-in reporting tools enable the estate managers to carefully monitor the system to keep the site secure. “We can run reports to check on occupancy levels and usage of certain areas, helping to reallocate rooms quickly and efficiently,” says Boyt.
Saïd Business School is an active member of the Tertiary Education Security Network (TESN), organised by Gallagher. The aim of the group is to bring Gallagher customers together to build relationships and share knowledge.
Boyt says: “We have found this group to be extremely useful as we continue our journey of building an integrated security system that meets our needs. We have learned a lot about campus security by attending TESN events and working closely with Gallagher and our security installer.”
Saïd Business School is using its learnings to improve security at its other university facilities.
“We want to integrate the CCTV cameras at our Park End Street events venue with Gallagher Command Centre to improve our monitoring capability,” says Boyt.
“We will also insist the Gallagher system and CCTV integration is installed on future projects, including the redevelopment of Osney Power Station which is set to become a world-leading centre for executive education.”