Professional Retail Store - September/October 2014 - (Page 69)
Key System Management:
Five Critical Components
Abstracted from "Five Critical Components of Key System Management," by Katie Willie
ey systems can be a daunting task to manage; whether you're starting from scratch or
re-vamping your current system, the white
paper The Five Critical Components of Key
System Management will help you delve into
every aspect of key control management. From choosing a system to establishing your policies and procedures, we'll walk you
through the difficult tasks as well as ones you probably haven't
Many organizations have key systems in place, but unless they
are setup and managed properly, they can become ineffective
and/or cost the organization hundreds to thousands of dollars
in unnecessary rekeys. There is a gradient of key control, and
organizations land somewhere on the scale. Your job is to decide if
you are comfortable with where your organization is on that scale.
Should you decide to re-evaluate your program, there are five
main components to consider:
* ey system philosophy
* ekey avenue
* ecords management
KEY SYSTEM PHILOSOPHY
Before you start evaluating key system options, decide what purpose your key system will serve.
Should keys simply lock the doors, or do you want them to be
restricted and/or serve as an audit trail?
Do you want something that can easily be rekeyed but costs
more up-front, or do you want a standard setup that is more
costly to rekey?
Does your facility require personnel to have access to different
doors with the use of a master key system?
This determination will establish the foundation for your
entire setup and will guide you in selecting a system type and
There are three main types of systems available in today's market:
* nrestricted systems
* estricted systems
* roprietary systems
As you move up the scale from unrestricted to proprietary,
your cost will increase; however, so will the level of security. With
the increased level of security come a few considerations; however, these considerations are precisely the things that keep your
Once you select your system type, you will need to determine the
type of cylinder you want to use. You will need to choose among
* tandard cylinders
Similar to system types, the cost will increase as you move from
standard cylinders to eCylinders; however, this increased cost will
save money in the long run. Interchangeable cylinders and eCylinders are much easier to rekey than standard cylinders.
Be aware that once you select a system type, you are committed.
Switching from one type to another, especially from standard to
interchangeable and vice versa, often necessitates all new hardware
which can be very costly.
There are two main options that make both using and administering
key systems much easier: user-rekeyable cylinders and master systems.
User-rekeyable cylinders allow one to easily swap out a core without ever calling a technician. While more expensive at the onset,
this option saves organizations an abundance of time and money.
Master key systems eliminate the need for a massive key ring; they
allow for different levels of access to each lock. This means that your
store manager can carry one key that opens all of the doors, while
your shift lead can carry a key that just opens the front door and
merchandise case. Likewise, if your DM is tired of keeping track of
keys for each of his stores, you can give him one key that will give
him entry into all stores in his region (see Figure 2).
Now that you have your foundation set, it's crucial that you outline
policies and implement a structure that will enforce them. Critical
policies to develop include but are not limited to:
* ow many keys should be issued per store?
* ho is allowed to carry those keys?
* ow are key orders placed?
* hen is the key system installed on new store openings?
* hat do you do with keys when a store closes?
A key to enforcing these policies is finding a vendor that will
partner with you. If your vendor is not willing to adhere to your
policies, your system will lose some of its integrity. You need your
vendor to help police and enforce the structure you set up.
It is important to note that having key system policies is not enough
to maintain your system's integrity. An equally critical component
www.prsm.com I SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2014 I 69
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Professional Retail Store - September/October 2014
Executive Director’s Column
New PRSM Members
Business in Canada
Fire Protection for Rolling Doors
Self-Performing Lighting Contractors and the Loch Ness Monster
Boma Every Building Conference
The Need to Reevaluate Network Security
Proper Handling of Hazardous Waste
Key System Management
Professional Retail Store - September/October 2014