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University key control

With almost 30,000 students, 1890 staff and 110-plus service contracting companies, some requiring 24-hour access to the site, Coventry University sought a secure method to manage its keys and access cards. Traka key cabinets were installed so that preauthorised contractors could gain access to areas of the campus, day or night, without compromising security.

Coventry is able to set up access rights for each contractor, so they can only retrieve keys and access cards to areas they are authorised to be in. Further to this, when a key or card is taken from the cabinet, an email notification can be sent to on-site university engineers so they are aware of who is on the premises with details of their mobile phone number when required. Traka says that its key management products create accountability, as the software allows for real-time reporting about who has accessed which key, and most importantly when it has been returned.

Coventry has also found in-house administration time reduced. Previously, issuing keys and access cards and trying to locate items missing took time. Installation of key cabinets has resulted in time savings of up to 30 minutes a day for six or seven members of the office.

Nigel Young, Building Services and Contracts Manager at Coventry University, said: “Before we had the cabinets we had key presses along the wall housing keys and cards that staff members in the office could access. But the whole system was extremely difficult to manage.

“The Traka key cabinets mean that we do not need a member of staff in the office at different times of the day and night to give contractors access to the building, freeing up more time. With Traka we have been able to improve health and safety, and security, whilst also encouraging a culture of professionalism among our team and contractors.”

Coventry first installed two large L-Series cabinets outside the ground floor offices of its Alma building. The uni then added a third cabinet in the Alma building and bought a further two cabinets for the second floor to manage the Design and Projects Contractor activity via the access control team.

The 300-key L-Series is configured to authorise a certain number of keys and access cards via various security groups at any one time. It also sends out email alerts which record who has taken certain keys and access cards and when they have returned them. Return curfews broken also send automated emails to companies advising of the breech which can lead to persons being refused continued working on the university sites.


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