Westminster Property Ventures (Westminster PV) owns and operates four prestigious multi-tenanted corporate office buildings in Central London, counting international banks, barristers’ chambers, and global consultancies among its tenants.

Westminster PV works closely with the unified security provider, Wilson James to ensure that the highest levels of security and service can be maintained within and outside of manned hours.

Westminster PV and Wilson James partnership

To deliver on tenant expectations, Westminster PV and Wilson James needed to enable effective collaboration

To deliver on tenant expectations, Westminster PV and Wilson James needed to enable effective collaboration and the seamless transfer of out-of-hours responsibilities between on-site employees and the remote monitoring centre.

Yet, the disparate existing systems in place for security and operations were largely unconnected, having to be accessed and managed independently. This made remote management of routine security operations time consuming and difficult.

Genetec Security Center

Westminster PV desired a technology platform that could control and present information from all of their existing systems through one interface, simplifying operations. At Wilson James’ suggestion, they opted to deploy Genetec Security Center, creating a unified platform that could manage outputs from its video surveillance, access control, intercoms, and building management system, all within one console.

According to Andrew Forbes-Jones, Facilities Manager at Westminster Property Ventures, “We were very pleased with the roadmap presented by Wilson James and Genetec, which allowed us to retain much of our original hardware and which gave us a clear idea for how the platform could continue to evolve, in line with future requirements. We’re investing in our facilities for the long term, so we needed partners who would continue to add value on an on-going basis.

Remote concierge service

Having established the unified platform, Wilson James and Westminster PV quickly introduced a remote concierge service for out-of-hours operations, leading to an ongoing 30% saving in guarding costs. The two companies also embarked on an on-going process of improvement that continues to this day, leveraging an improved understanding of what is happening within the facility at any moment, in order to enhance operational response.

Our staff and external partners work hard to create an excellent environment for our tenants and technology is the enabler for that. We’re constantly finding new ways that the platform can support them in working smarter and more productively,” adds Andrew Forbes-Jones.

Genetec Mission Control

Critical to this process is Genetec Mission Control, a collaborative decision management system

Critical to this process is Genetec Mission Control, a collaborative decision management system that filters incoming events and alerts, and guides the operator in resolving them in an efficient and transparent manner. Pre-configured with Wilson James’ standard operating procedures (SOPs), it speeds up the time to resolution for security and operational issues, ensuring they are consistently handled, irrespective of which operator is responding to them.

For example, should a thermostat or leak detector flag a potential maintenance issue out-of-hours then operators in Wilson James’ remote monitoring centre are guided through the process of identifying the problem, raising a work request and directing it to the right person.

Detailed reporting

Reporting is now much more detailed and can be delivered in half the time, in many cases leading to the issue being resolved before it has even been reported on site. Equally, if a forced door attempt alarm is triggered, the system ensures operators can quickly pull up the relevant video footage, to see what is happening and even establish a dialogue via the nearest intercom or speaker.

Potential security issues can be validated before a security guard is mobilised. Time and cost savings associated with Genetec Mission Control are estimated to have saved Westminster Property Ventures over £100,000 per year per building.

Seamless data sharing and collaboration drive efficiency

As the operator of four prestige Central London buildings, it is not uncommon for Westminster PV to receive requests from its tenants and third parties, such as the police and transport authorities for the video footage it holds.

For example, an incident may occur outside of the facilities that are picked up by its cameras. Or the barristers’ chambers housed within its buildings may need video footage to challenge the timing of a delivery of legal documents.

Genetec Clearance, digital evidence management system

It has also deployed Genetec Clearance, a digital evidence management system

It has also deployed Genetec Clearance, a digital evidence management system that streamlines the handling and processing of the requests and simplifies compliance with Article 15 of the EU GDPR directive.

The time spent locating the relevant footage, redacting the identities of all third parties not pertinent to the subject access request and copying the files onto physical media such as DVDs for each request previously took up to three days to process. This has been reduced by 70% as Genetec Clearance drives efficiencies at every stage and gives Westminster PV more control over the process of collecting, managing, and sharing digital evidence.

Adapting to changing requirements

A clear objective at the outset was for a system that could quickly evolve to support new capabilities, a decision that proved invaluable at the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Thanks to the flexibility of the Genetec platform, Westminster PV has been able to rely on its existing smart video and access control infrastructure, in order to ensure a safe and secure environment for staff, tenants, and visitors.

Rapid adoption of new safety measures

Rapidly adopted new measures include an automated reporting system for occupancy management, a mandatory one-way system, and a COVID-19 proximity reporting tool.

Should a visitor test positive, or exhibit symptoms, facility managers can quickly pull up a report and alert all individuals who may need to self-isolate, based on passing through the same doorway within a short time window.