VSG, one of the UK’s leading providers of integrated security services, has installed Merlin 3 control room software in its central Alarm Receiving Centre at Northampton. Designed and developed by Initsys, Merlin 3 has enabled VSG to boost productivity in the ARC by over 15% by speeding up the control processes used in a range of day to day operations and enabling a higher level of activity to be achieved without having to add more staff. It is also delivering high levels of automation to help VSG provide a faster, customised response to meet the individual requirements of customers in a wide range of market sectors.
“Merlin 3 enables us to deliver bespoke security solutions including the remote monitoring and managing of diverse systems without requiring customers to make a considerable capital investment in new systems,” commented Nick Reed, Managing Director of VSG Systems. “This flexible control room solution enables us to take a more holistic approach to supporting customers – we would not be able to operate without it.”
In the event of an alarm activation, Merlin 3 automatically connects to the camera nearest to the incident and operates the pan, tilt and zoom functions enabling events to be quickly reviewed and recorded in the ARC. This relieves operators of the responsibility for manually locating and selecting the nearest camera and enables immediate and effective action to be taken. The system provides considerably more information than can be achieved with traditional control room software through the delivery of up to fifty still images, rather than the traditional three, enabling a clearer picture to be gained of the chain of events immediately before, during and after alarm activations. This enables ARC operators to quickly and easily identify genuine events and reduce the incidence of false alarms.
Merlin 3 filters alarms to improve the decision-making process for every activation as well as providing detailed instructions on the course of actions that need to be followed. These responses can be set up to meet the requirements of individual customers and locations and enable a rapid, customised and consistent response to be delivered for every activation taking into account all risk factors. Merlin 3 further speeds up the alarm handling process by auto dialling to a relevant contact or key holder when a screen icon is clicked. The system automatically escalates these alerts if there is no response with SMS and email messages to a predetermined list of contacts.
“Initsys reacts quickly to changing market conditions and customer requirements providing a rapid response to all requests for software enhancements or new integration projects,” continued Nick Reed. “This is playing an important role in helping us to develop a new range of outsourcing services that will enable organisations across the public and private sectors to achieve significant cost savings. Merlin 3 is enabling us to provide outsourced technical support help desks, advice lines, access control and building management services which can be delivered transparently without losing the personalised look and feel of in-house operations.”