Tag Archives: Utilities

Axis Group hosts Institute of Customer Service Breakfast Briefing for CEOs

Axis Group hosted an Institute of Customer Service Breakfast Briefing for CEOs during October’s National Customer Service Week, with the event specifically designed to bring UK business leaders together and engage them in the importance of customer service for their organisations.

CEOs attended from sectors ranging from housing and construction through to tourism and the utilities. Themes discussed included how to develop and implement a vision for the UK as a global service leader, how organisations can connect customer service and satisfaction measures to bottom line business performance, what skills and competencies are required in the Boardroom and accountability and reporting.

Challenges faced by the UK’s service industry, such as Brexit, cyber security, Artificial Intelligence, skills shortages and the growing powers of customer review-centric websites were discussed, alongside the growing importance of trust and reputation.

Axis Group joined as a member of The Institute of Customer Service last year and is currently working towards The Institute’s ServiceMark accreditation – the national standard for measuring an organisation’s service levels and commitment to continuous improvement.

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Jo Causon, CEO at The Institute of Customer Service, explained: “A huge Thank You to the Axis Group for hosting our latest CEO Breakfast Briefing event. The debate highlighted the importance of a focus on customer-centricity at Boardroom level and the improvement in business performance this brings. At a time of even greater uncertainty, a sustained approach towards delivering an exceptional customer experience has never been more important.”

Jonathan Levine, Axis Group’s CEO, responded: “The event provided some fascinating insight. We were shown the clear and measurable benefits of investing in customer service in terms of retaining business and customer recommendations, as well as the link between an engaged workforce and excellent customer service. Customer service and focusing on our employees being our greatest asset is key to our business strategy. We must always seek to mitigate the challenges that our industry faces.”

The Institute of Customer Service is the leading independent expert setting and upholding the necessary standards to enable its customers to improve their business performance through service. By supporting members in transforming customer service and professionalism within their organisations, the organisation’s aim is for customer experience to make a positive and sustained impact on individuals, organisations and, indeed, the economic well-being of the UK.

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Cable-free access control solutions specialist LOCKEN celebrates 15 years of innovation in security sector

LOCKEN was established in 2003, combining the knowledge and expertise of its three founders: Arnaud Flecchia, Roland de la Chapelle and Stéphane Conreux. Those founders have “transformed” the business of access control thanks to breakthrough technology based on intelligent keys and user-friendly software, bringing to market a solution that required no wiring or maintenance. This was a remarkable leap forward that has fully benefited security provision for major telecoms, energy and water distribution infrastructures, where isolated and sensitive external sites are the norm.

In 2004, just a year after the company was established, the LOCKEN key was sending its data via a remote device directly connected to the system. Awarded the Trophée de l’Innovation in 2007, LOCKEN picked up the pace of innovation from then on.

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In 2009, the company released the LOCKEN Web Request software application, a complementary module improving co-ordination of the activities of technicians on sites. 2014 saw the advent of the MyLocken application and new customised services were developed around access control. 

The following year, the application took on a new dimension in order to meet the specific needs of customers with customised functions, such as authorisations, declarations of presence on site and reporting of anomalies, combined with new technologies like beacon and RFID.

In 2015, LOCKEN completed development of the software application termed LOCKEN Smart Access (LSA), the first multi-technology access management platform, making it a major breakthrough that would emerge as the cornerstone of its future strategy since the system was now capable of controlling different types of identifiers such as keys, badges and smart phones.

Last year, LSA’s ergonomics were upgraded to a more graphic approach in line with new practices using applications like Google Maps.

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Over time, major companies in the transport industry, banking and local Government sectors have followed the lead of multi-site companies and turned to LOCKEN for assistance, attracted by its “customer business line optimisation” philosophy.

In 2016, the merger with Italian manufacturer ISEO opened up new avenues and the contactless key with a Bluetooth module arrived on the scene. More efficient and more secure, it has allowed LOCKEN to build leading-edge equipment into its offer.

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JB Corrie accreditation sees fourth company approved to install ArmaWeave

A fourth company has now been accredited to install ArmaWeave, the approved high-security perimeter fencing system manufactured by Zaun. Specialist fencing installer JB Corrie has committed to training its site operatives in the installation methods for ArmaWeave developed by Zaun over time to make best use of the solution’s high-security woven fabric.

Impressed with the versatility of the system, JB Corrie is now installing the Zaun mesh on several security sites.

The company joins expert installer Allen Fencing Limited, systems integrator Crime & Fire Defence Systems and premier prison fencing installer Binns Fencing, a Zaun subsidiary, as an approved installer.

Contracts director Norton Welch said: “We’re delighted to have received this accreditation and look forward to working closely with Zaun to install its security products in the future.”

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JB Corrie’s contracts director Norton Welch (centre) and senior sales and estimating manager Luke Ryan (left) receive their accreditation to install ArmaWeave from Zaun’s sales and marketing director Chris Plimley

The company – which has been in business for over 100 years and is now in the ownership of the fourth generation Corrie family – installs integrated perimeter protection systems for high security applications and boasts military bases, utilities, power stations and airports among its clients.

Zaun established the installer scheme after increasing requests from customers to recommend contractors with suitable installation, quality and safety standards.

Panels can be raked

ArmaWeave is produced on the world’s largest steel loom at Zaun’s West Midlands manufacturing base. It boasts properties that give it distinct advantages against more traditional welded mesh systems, such as panels that can be raked to accommodate slopes. Therefore, installers require the necessary skill sets to set this up.

The wire of the panels has a tensile strength typically more than double that of welded panels so special methods are needed for cutting the panels during installation.

Zaun trained JB Corrie’s installation teams on the properties and tolerances of ArmaWeave and how it’s manufactured. The training is for ‘fencers’ with proven experience in high-security fencing work who are sponsored by a company that can demonstrate its professionalism through membership of a relevant trade organisation and valid UKAS-accredited ISO 9001 certification.

The certificate of training is only valid while the individual is working for the host company. This ensures that trained individuals are working properly under quality management to install the product.

With its partners, Zaun hopes to increase the adoption of ArmaWeave as the standard for secure sites of Critical National Infrastructure – such as the utilities, Data Centres and nuclear sites – while ensuring consistent installation quality.

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Zaun develops SR3 fencing for Critical National Infrastructure applications

A high-security fence for rail and other Critical National Infrastructure (CNI) applications that resists sustained attack with specialist power tools for more than five minutes has been developed by steel mesh fencing manufacturer Zaun.

Zaun has received a revised Certificate of Product Approval from the Loss Prevention Certification Board to include its brand new CorruSec SR3 approved to Security Rating 3. The fencing system incorporates corrugated HiSec 3-5-10 mesh sandwiched between further panels of HiSec 3-5-10, a special welded steel wire fence panel similar to the type of mesh usually used for prison fencing, whose name is derived from its mesh size: 3″ × 0.5″ × 10 gauge.

The original concept was the idea of Zaun co-founder and director Alastair Henman and has been developed by R&D manager Adam Christie. Christie explained: “Alastair conceived the design by looking at the construction of cardboard, in particular the corrugated kind and how the corrugated element created a much stronger three-dimensional material. We started experimenting with a corrugated mesh centre section to give fencing greater rigidity and increase its thickness without adding much to the material content and weight in order to counter the kind of tools attackers might use.”

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CorruSec SR3 has been subjected to sustained attack by testers from the Building Research Establishment wielding a range of hand and power tools, yet they couldn’t breach the CorruSec SR3 in less than five minutes.

The fencing system is manufactured to BS 1722 Part 14 and is approved at heights from 2.4 metres to 6 metres above the ground, in ground or base-plated options.

Each individual panel features a 76.2 mm x 12.7 mm mesh configuration with 3 mm horizontal and vertical wires. The corrugated section is pressed to approximately 100 mm in depth. All three layers are bolted together using bolts fixed into place in a grid pattern throughout the combined fence panel.

CorruSec SR3 provides good through visibility for use with CCTV cameras, while security toppings can be added to suit.

Alastair Henman explained: “The current specification for CrossRail stations is a ‘5-minute fence’, so we set about seeing if we could create a viable product. Across our customer base, operators of CNI are upgrading their most sensitive sites given  the heightened fear of terrorist threats and advances in technology.”

As well as rail applications, SR3 fencing is ideal for protecting assets at water utilities, oil and gas compounds, Data Centres and other CNI sites.

 

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Abloy UK advises companies to secure remote sites in wake of record £20 million fine for Thames Water

Abloy UK is advising companies to secure remote sites and minimise the risk of substantial fines by dint of using innovative new access control technology. This advice comes in light of the recent record fine of over £20 million given to Thames Water for polluting the River Thames with 1.4 billion litres of raw sewage.

Thames Water was functioning with reduced operational resources, in turn resulting in unmanned sites. When alarms were raised signalling issues, they were not attended to immediately – including one being ignored for 37 hours*.

Abloy UK suggests that a system such as PROTEC2 CLIQ with CLIQ Connect could prevent these kinds of events from happening by allowing access to be granted remotely, such that incidents can be dealt with on a swift basis.

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PROTEC2 CLIQ allows for the remote management of disparate or large electronic master-keyed sites, provides audit trails on locks and padlocks and allows lost or stolen keys to be invalidated, in turn assuring secure key management at all times.

CLIQ Connect enables PROTEC2 CLIQ keys to be activated through a smart phone using Bluetooth 4.0 technology, offering flexibility, time-saving and ease of use of remote access control. The system is ideally suited to organisations that have a number of engineers and contractors visiting remote sites, and offers a solution for many different sectors including defence, the utilities, telecoms, transport, education and healthcare.

Steve Wintle, head of Critical National Infrastructure at Abloy UK, said: “We can see from the example of Thames Water that businesses can be under resourced. This is often how mistakes and accidents can happen. Investment in a system such as CLIQ Connect could have saved a business such as Thames Water a significant fine, not to mention the cost of negative publicity and the impact this could have on share price. By de-centralising the authentication of access, the system can act as a secondary confirmation. Access and actions can be double-checked, thereby preventing costly incidents such as this one from occurring.”

*http://www.henleystandard.co.uk/news/home/107177/thames-water-fined-record-20million-over-sewage-leaks.html

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TDSi bestows AlertSystems with Platinum Partner of the Year Award for 2016

Integrated security solutions manufacturer TDSi has awarded AlertSystems with its Platinum Partner of the Year Award for 2016. The award was presented to Ian Trayling of AlertSystems and recognises the expert installer for its close partnership with the security manufacturer.

Having received the award, Paul Brake (joint managing director of AlertSystems) said: “I speak for the whole team when I say we’re delighted and honoured to be presented with this award, which reflects how closely we work with TDSi to provide our customers with the best solutions and implementation. TDSi’s products offer outstanding quality of service and value for money, which in turn helps us to offer our clients very attractive RoI in a highly competitive market. We look forward to continuing our fruitful partnership.”

Ian Trayling and John Davies Alert Systems Award

Ian Trayling (left) and John Davies

TDSi’s channel partner manager Alex Rumsey is equally enthusiastic about the award. “AlertSystems has continuously delivered the highest levels of professionalism, technical expertise and market awareness which makes them an ideal partner for TDSi,” said Rumsey. “With a highly keen interest in the market, AlertSystems has grown its business with TDSi significantly throughout the last 12 months, with a stand-out project for Capita Customer Management and Marlborough College. This award is richly deserved and we’re proud to be forging a continued partnership of success.”

As one of the UK’s leading providers of electronic security systems to businesses, AlertSystems is committed to providing excellent products and outstanding customer care for organisations seeking high quality security solutions. With thousands of commercial security installations across the UK, the company is a trusted security supplier to organisations from all major industry sectors, including transport, logistics, food production, schools, universities, hotels, the utilities and waste management.

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Reliance High-Tech announces record-breaking annual financials as revenues rise by 24%

Reliance High-Tech has delivered record annual results thanks to the company’s continued focus on operational excellence and IP technology designed to provide a new breed of solutions for its corporate and public sector end user customers.

A continued orientation towards high security customers across the police service, the utilities, the lone worker and corporate markets, coupled with solutions infused by specialist technology, has resulted in a diversity of new applications and a leading position in high security markets for the Reading-based integrated security specialist.

“By focusing on the right technology and markets and coupling this with strong execution, we’ve created a unique position and advantage,” affirmed managing director Terry Sallas. “We’re winning new customers. Our revenues have grown by 24% and operating margins have improved by 6%.”

Reliance High-Tech has enjoyed a record-breaking year

Reliance High-Tech has enjoyed a record-breaking year

Consolidating its position as a leading solutions provider for both demanding and regulated environments, Reliance High-Tech continues to build on its solid and strong reputation for addressing complex security and technology issues, in turn creating long-term relationships and securing major framework agreements.

“A long term view allows us to capitalise on technology trends and invest in our customers,” urged Sallas. “We will continue building our eco-system of partners and creating new services and value for end user customers, particularly in the era of the cloud.”

In conclusion, Sallas told Risk UK: “By any measure, our performance over the last year has been outstanding. We’re now building on that success. We will continue investing in processes, IT infrastructure and people as we focus on moving even closer to our customers and delivering industry-leading solutions and service levels.”

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