Improved access control at City Office

October 2004 Access Control & Identity Management

Project scope

Three factories/sites

One biometric enrolment station

Three Sagem MorphoAccess terminals

Approximately 100 employees

The history

City Office manufactures a wide range of office chairs from three factories located in different parts of Johannesburg. The company had reported ineffective time and attendance control based on keypads at two sites, and punchcard at one site. Very serious buddy clocking issues were identified at all three sites.

The existing solution needed to be enhanced in order to allow for accurate and reliable time and attendance based on biometric identification in order to eliminate the possibility of buddy clocking. And also to reduce the time taken by staff to access working zones.

The solution was proposed to the customer, and the customer was shown similar operational sites as references.

The goal

To effectively control and manage productivity and attendance of employees.

The solution

SAGEM biometrics-based identification system. One MorphoAccess reader at each of the three sites. One mobile Sagem Central enrolment system to enrol and mange fingerprint distribution and transaction downloading.

The benefits

More accurate and reliable access control based on biometric identification and authentication, and also to reduce the time taken by staff to access working zones.

Tenders, specs and implementation

The system was awarded to a preferred supplier based on a proposal submitted, reference sites visited, and customer service levels.

The entire system was designed, proposed, implemented and supported by a turnkey solutions provider.

Measuring progress

Progress was measured by determining the effects of the system on the wage bill, and the increase in attendance, less late comings and early departures from the workplace.

In summary

The business was losing money due to incorrect time and attendance data. A biometric-based time and attendance solution was chosen to eliminate fraudulent time and attendance transactions and increase productivity.

The nature of work done in one of the factories is such that certain employees use sandpaper to manually sand wooden components of the chairs. This type of manual work severely damages the fingerprints to a degree which caused most biometric systems to fail. The Sagem biometric system has however, proven to be very successful in these difficult conditions.

Fact file

Key service providers, products and solutions

Prime contractor: Fugen Technologies, George De Lange, 011 616 9101,

Biometric products: Sagem Morpho range, distributed by Ideco Technologies, Gary Jones, 011 442 0064,

City Office, Charles Tietge, 011 674 5560,

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