Productivity increase via surveillance

June 2014 CCTV, Surveillance & Remote Monitoring

Thava, an Indian restaurant based in Norwood, Johannesburg, faced challenges that are typical to organisations in the food service industry. These included ensuring staff productivity, preventing petty theft and delivering high levels of service for improved customer satisfaction.

Thava also faced the additional challenge in that the owner, Mathew Abraham, runs a chain of restaurants and cannot be on the premises at his Norwood location at all times, making monitoring service levels difficult. In order to meet these challenges Abraham required a surveillance system that would effectively assist with monitoring and managing the restaurant no matter where in the world he happens to be. He turned to Graphic Image Technologies (GIT) and its SerVision platform to provide the solution.

“With service and quality core to the restaurant industry, it is necessary to have a hands-on approach and close control in terms of service, kitchen, staff discipline and cost control. However, it was not possible for me to be at the restaurant at all times and our existing CCTV solution did not offer the functionality for remote monitoring. GIT recommended SerVision as the ideal solution to this problem,” Abraham explains.

After conducting a proof of concept at the restaurant to demonstrate the effectiveness of the SerVision solution, Abraham contracted GIT to install the solution permanently.

Working with installer Colin Joffe Security, GIT replaced the existing digital video recorder (DVR) with a SerVision unit, utilising the existing cameras and wiring to maximise return on investment (ROI). The installation was completed in less than half an hour, and training for Abraham as well as two managers was provided to ensure all relevant parties were able to use the solution.

The SerVision solution extends the functionality of traditional CCTV solutions by effectively enabling remote monitoring. By streaming quality footage at low bandwidth levels, Abraham is now able to remotely access and view footage from any of his cameras on his smartphone, computer or tablet device, giving him the necessary control and ability to be hands-on even when he is offsite or travelling.

Getting staff on board

“The solution was initially treated with scepticism by management, but once the advantages and benefits became clear the change was welcomed. Staff are aware that they are now being constantly monitored, which has helped to change negative behaviour and noticeably improve efficiency. The managers are also kept on their toes knowing that I am watching, which has brought about improvements to service levels and customer satisfaction. Aside from this, I am also able to view the cleanliness of the restaurant, table settings and arrangements and ensure that should something be amiss, corrective action can be taken quickly. I would estimate that since the implementation of the SerVision solution we have experienced a 20% increase in efficiency and output,” says Abraham.

The SerVision solution can be used not only to monitor staff and service levels, but also stock levels, shrinkage, kitchen efficiency and general behaviours. In addition, it forms an integral part of security during and after hours, as incidents can be viewed and corrective action as well as alerting of appropriate parties can be swiftly ensured.

“While CCTV is useful for after-the-fact evidence, it is only with the ability to provide live, remote monitoring that its full value can be realised. The SerVision solution helps to solve many common challenges in the restaurant industry, by ensuring that owners can always keep an eye on their business no matter where they are. This Big Brother effect is an effective deterrent to the many typical staff issues that happen when owners are away,” concludes Laurence Smith, Executive at GIT.

The SerVision solution has been running effectively at Thava Norwood since March 2013. Abraham is currently exploring the option of extending this solution to his other branches.

For more information contact Graphic Image Technologies, +27 (0)11 483 0333,,


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