Security to the Hilt

Security to the Hilt

Tool maker seeks topnotch security management system

If you’ve ever been to a construction site, chances are you’ve seen Hilti Corp.’s construction tools or its plumbing, heating and air conditioning mechanisms. Hilti’s signature bright red industrial tools and components are used by construction crews worldwide. The Hilti brand has been providing leading-edge technology to the global construction industry since 1941. The company is located in more than 120 countries and employs 20,000 people worldwide.

Its North America headquarters are located in Tulsa, Okla., where it employs more than 700 people. As the corporate headquarters grew in size, it became increasingly important to protect its varied assets. Hilti turned to Dowley Security Systems Inc., which helped plan and design the company’s security management system.

After assessing Hilti’s needs, which included protecting a large product testing area, training department, and operations, sales and administrative offices, the company chose to install AMAG Technology’s Symmetry Business Security Management System.

One of Hilti’s first mandatory security procedures required all employees to wear a security-issued identity badge. All employees have their photo taken and are issued a proximity card. The card is programmed to allow the employee into his or her designated department and any other areas of the headquarters building pertinent to his or her job function. Employees also are assigned entry and exit times. Contractors and vendors are issued proximity cards with limited access. Visitors with escorts must wear a badge as well, but it is not a proximity card.

The access control system comes standard with a visitor management feature to help manage access for all visitors.

“Everyone who enters Hilti, or works for Hilti, is required to wear a badge to prove who they are and that they belong in the building,” said Hilti corporate security supervisor Lonnie Parker. “Implementing access cards allows the security department to keep track of who is coming in and going out. This is critical information to track if there is an incident.”

The ID badge system includes access control software and allows Hilti’s security staff to easily capture card holder images, design badge layouts and print on demand. Hilti creates different styled badges for contractors and employees, making it easy to decipher who is an employee and who is a contractor. An around-the-clock security staff works in a large command center that uses eight to 10 monitors, with 28 CCTV cameras, in its security management system and its 80 proximity readers.

In addition to access control, the staff uses Symmetry as an intrusion system and to monitor access points on interior doors and main doors throughout the facility. When a door is held open too long, an alarm is activated in the command center. The security staff can dispatch a guard or radio the roaming guards to investigate. The system makes it simple to know right where to dispatch the guard, saving critical time and minimizing security risks.

“It was important to the security staff to install a userfriendly security management system,” said Mary Reed, general manager of Dowley Security Systems Inc. The warehouse created a special challenge for Hilti. Inventory would turn up missing, leaving the manager baffled as to its location. After further investigation, it was discovered that internal departments would pull product from the shelves to use in presentations without following the proper procedures for requisitioning the products when needed. With Symmetry, the managers were able to set this area up as a restricted area.

“This solution not only secures our warehouse from unauthorized employees and guests, but it helped enforce a company policy,” Parker said. “Staff must now follow the proper procedures when they need product for any reason. This has saved countless man-hours over the years and helped our department run more efficiently.”

Other areas within the headquarters building are highly restricted due to different sensitivities:

Computer room. The main servers are kept under tight control, and only the IT department and high-level executives are allowed access.

Warehouse area. Only authorized staff are allowed into this area during peak operating times, which protects employees and assets.

Many cities throughout the United States have Hilti storefronts. At this time, the retail stores do not have access control, but Parker and his security team are looking forward to possibly standardizing that in the future. This will allow Hilti easily to add an unlimited number of storefront locations to its security management system.

Hilti will still have the same easy-touse system and the capability to manage multiple locations from its central command center in Tulsa. The business solution allows card administration and remote monitoring to be completed via a Web browser, creating an uncomplicated, centrally managed security process for the security department.

“When it comes to security, I believe the number one thing that any company wants is to invest in a security system that works,” Reed said. “It protects their assets, whether it is people, inventory, or premises—anything that is an asset. Going forward with this solution, the company will have the confidence that they are taken care of and they’ll be able to expand the system they have.”

This application employs an openarchitecture platform, providing the ability to integrate with third-party vendors and import data from personnel or other databases. As Hilti’s needs expand over the years, the company has the option to integrate the system with its current video management system or other human resource or building management systems.

“This is not just an access control system; it’s true security integration,” Reed said. “It integrates with cameras and with other systems to allow you to fully secure your building or buildings.”

“It’s a user-friendly system that serves our needs today and provides growth if and when we do expand,” Parker said.

This article originally appeared in the January 2012 issue of Security Today.

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