Mobility is a continuing trend in 2011 and beyond.
And it’s not just people accessing the Internet via smartphones, we are seeing the push to mobility in many business sectors, including security.
Commissionaires B.C. is charged with securing the city of Kelowna’s parks, city property and yards.
At the end of last year the company installed computer laptops in all of their patrol cars, allowing them to run a software program to collect and analyze information on the spot.
They can look at a single incident or the big picture to spot trends and assess risk.
Prior to the mobile program, hand-written reports were prepared at the end of a long day, which could sometimes be difficult to read for clients.
Now, wireless Internet is used to connect to the system and reports are prepared on laptops, directly from the vehicle.
However, the real power of the software program is the ability it gives commissionaires to mine data in order to spot trends and address them right away.
“This new software is bringing a whole new dimension to the way we do business,” said Darrel O’Shaughnessy, manager of the southern Interior for Commissionaires B.C.
“In the past, we would collect information and provide written reports.
“Collecting data is one thing, but understanding what it is telling you is another.
“With this software, patterns and trends become immediately apparent and we can apply what we learn to current and future security issues.
“For example, we can use the trending aspect of the software to identify trouble spots, such as which washrooms in which parks are attracting unwanted attention.
“We now have more flexibility and precision in how we secure Kelowna parks than we’ve ever had before.”
The system was developed by Edmonton-based PPM 2000.
Commissionaires B.C. is the first company to be running PPM 2000 software in patrol cars on laptops, in PPM2000’s 23- year history.
The two organizations worked together to develop the mobile application.
Along with the mobile version, Commissionaires B.C. has also been using the PPM 2000 software at their detachment at the Kelowna International Airport since December 2009.
The database is also used at the airport to identify trends.
For instance, by searching the database commissionaires can determine which days, and times of day, baggage is most likely to be left unattended.
The airport can adapt by making more public announcements during these times, or increase personnel in the baggage claims area.
“Prior to using PPM2000 we would have to dig up the paper files and spend hours of time going through them to uncover the pattern. Now it’s so quick and easy to query the database and see the history of incidents,” said O’Shaughnessy.
Commissionaires B.C.’s Okanagan division is the first in the national organization to be using PPM 2000 and mobile patrols, but they don’t expect to be the only ones for much longer.