TCI Group was able to not only meet those challenges, but created an innovative fleet management solution to combat insider threats.
A Growing Problem
TCI Group is one of the top builders of energy and communication networks in Canada. This highly competitive organization employs 1500 people and exercises strict quality control at every level, ensuring that projects are completed on schedule and within each client’s budget. Founded in 1978, TCI Group has four primary sites located in Laval, and 7 satellite locations throughout the province. The company has engaged in ongoing strategic growth and now has an annual business volume of more than 170 million dollars.
With aggressive plans for continued expansion already underway, physical security was becoming a growing burden for TCI Group. The legacy analog security system was out of date and difficult to maintain. Many satellite locations were running their own systems. Any changes to these systems required a trip to the physical site. As a result, the addition of one new employee to the system could require a six-hour drive so that their information could be entered into the system manually.
In addition to issues related to basic system management, TCI Group was also dealing with insider theft. TCI Group keeps large rolls of copper wire on site. Metals are attractive targets for theft, and aside from periodic walk-bys by security guards, TCI Group had no way to track the trucks and people that were coming in and out of the materials yard. As a result, on more than one occasion the company found itself the victim of copper theft.
The Right Partner, The Right Product
TCI Group’s technical director, Stephane Martin, was responsible for spearheading the next generation of security for the company, and knew he needed a system that could be deployed without downtime under challenging circumstances. New construction would be ongoing throughout the project, and the next-generation system would need to be designed for ongoing expansion.
TCI was in the process of acquiring additional buildings,” says Martin. “We were concerned about the cost of adding new doors and new buildings on an ongoing basis without limitations and at a competitive price, and about working with a manufacturer who could keep up with us.
Working closely with the S2 Security Canada sales team, TCI Group decided to deploy an IP-based system based on the S2 Extreme and Micronode controllers integrated with intrusion detection software and Milestone video management software. The integrated system would centralize security, and offer remote capabilities that would enable Martin to operate the system via a web browser. Each site would be equipped with a node designed for a deployment of a particular size: the Extreme for larger sites, the Micronode for smaller locations.
“We were able to offer a centralized integrated IP-based system that would not only bring them into the 21st century, but could expand as they continued to grow,” recalls Damien Landry, Sales Manager, Canada, S2 Security. “By basing the project on S2 products, TCI Group now has one of the best systems on the market, and they were up-and-running in no time.”
Combating Insider Threats
In an innovative use of the S2 technology, TCI Group was able to put an end to equipment and material thefts. The new system now operates as a physical security system, and also as a fleet management system that tracks which trucks are entering and leaving the yard. With the new system, when a truck approaches the gate, a card reader is able to recognize the truck number and record what time it left the site and returned. The guard is able to open the gate remotely, and can see truck activity on a widget that keeps the gate entrance in view on the desktop at all times.
“TCI Group gets deliveries at all hours of the day,” says Landry. “But it is expensive to send a guard to check every truck that comes in and out. By using the remote capabilities of the system and card reader technology, we provided an easier way for TCI Group to manage its fleet without the need to invest in any additional hardware or software.”
Martin agrees that the fleet management component has been especially effective. “We have been able to transfer overnight duties to a security firm. We’ve also been able to stop thefts as they were happening, and produce evidence for law enforcement.”
Remote Management Frees Resources
Today, Martin no longer has to travel to each site to add new employees to the system; instead, an employee arrives for their first day of work with an access control card that has already been formatted and activated. The strain on resources to manage security has been eliminated, even as the company continues to add new sites.
“S2 Security has been a valuable partner in this process,” adds Martin. “Working with S2, we were able to design a system using proven products that streamline our processes, saving us time and money. And it is reassuring to know that as we grow, the system is growing with us.”