The Importance of Key Management SystemsJeff Love
Keys and locks come with a level of reliability and effectiveness in terms of physical protection and prevention that cannot be matched. They are also easy to install, requires low maintenance, and comes with a minimal cost. That is why effective key management is important, however not as a standalone security solution. To maintain the integrity of the key and lock system you have in place as well as ensure that you reduce risk exposure, it needs to be coupled with an effective key control and management system.
When you take into consideration your key system, it needs to be paired with a key management system where you store the keys safely in a lockable key cabinet that offers the desired level of security and is also tamper-proof. With it, you should set in place means to record the access transactions about the key being dispatched from its hook and by whom, and who accessed the cabinet. There are various means to do so based on your budget and requirement; manual or automatic. For instance, when it comes to TelKee Key Cabinets, you are able to choose which type of locking mechanism your key cabinet will be fitted with, that is, the standard that is a bi-lock, a 3-digit combo lock, or a mechanical keypad (that also comes with a manager override). The keyed entry locked obviously comes with manual record keeping measures inclusive of a signature strip left behind with the date, time and dispatchers name.
Accountability is an important factor in a key management system. When you think about lost or mismanaged keys that can open up so many vulnerabilities, overall safety and security can be compromised. That is why instances such as loaning keys between personnel for them to be lost or stolen can be avoided with a proper key control and management system and a policy to go with it. Pairing a key and lock system with a key management via a quality lockable key cabinet will aid in avoiding circumstances where you will need rekey locks which can be an expensive practice. Though mechanical keypad lockable cabinets are pricier than the standard cabinets due to their features, the automated functionality in which access to the cabinet is recorded via the inbuilt software is extremely useful.
How you go about enforcing a key management system is as follows;
1. The building needs to be inventoried in order to figure out access points and locks that have been installed. These can be categorised and separated into lockable key cabinets depending on access measures mentioned below.
2. Identify the operational needs of the employees who will require access to said points and locked areas. Appoint personnel who will be accountable for managing the key cabinets. Allow access to said cabinets depending on frequency, rank and authority.
3. Put in place a policy that offers procedures that are easy to follow to enforce effective key control and management.
Image Credit: Affordable Fitouts