How Vanderbilt’s Integrated Solutions Can Help Campuses Improve Their Security

Vanderbilt Industries’ Security Management System, ACT365 cloud-based access control platform and other solutions can help campus officials integrate their systems and collaborate more effectively for better security.

Integrating access control technologies, digital video and alarm monitoring systems can be extremely challenging for any organization, especially for a school district, institution of higher education or healthcare facility. Fortunately, Vanderbilt Industries can meet the protection needs of your organization with its Security Management System, ACT365 cloud-based access control platform and other solutions.

In his interview with Campus Safety, Eric Widlitz, who is Vanderbilt’s vice president of North American Sales, discusses what Vanderbilt will be showcasing at GSX+ September 21-24.

Be sure to visit them virtually at GSX+ by clicking here. You can also visit the company at their website

Campus Safety: What is the top product or offering Vanderbilt is showing off at GSX this year, and what makes it special? How does it apply to healthcare facilities, schools and/or higher education security, public safety and/or emergency management?

Eric Widlitz: Within Vanderbilt U.S., the Vanderbilt Security Management System (SMS) is our signature enterprise-level offering that offers large campuses the ability to simultaneously manage a multitude of resources at any given time to mitigate threats. The powerful, single-source solution enables a facility to integrate its access control technologies, digital video and alarm monitoring systems. From a uniform interface, security leaders are able to manage alarms, photo ID badging, visitor management, elevator control, offline and online locks, advanced reporting and more.

If there is a visitor at your school entrance, with the ACT365 cloud-based access control platform, you can verify the person and open the door with a click of a button — all from your smartphone.

Healthcare facilities, schools and higher education campuses benefit from SMS because of its ability to support an unlimited number of cardholders and readers. Part of its appeal is also the Vanderbilt VI Connect, which provides a path to integrate data management software into the SMS platform (such as student management data bases, event management software and more). For example, once an event is scheduled within the SMS system, the doors will automatically unlock for an event, and then re-lock once the event is over. And when used in collaboration with a network-based reservation system, educational facilities can experience additional benefits, such as the ability of students to reserve a meeting space or classroom without having to be physically let in the room every time.

CS: What other products or offerings would you like to highlight, and what are some of their qualities and benefits?

Widlitz: The ACT365 cloud-based access control platform is hosted in the cloud and therefore delivers remote access and instant management to protect your premises. ACT365 delivers a solution that provides business owners far greater visibility and control of their property.

For example, if there is a visitor at your site entrance, you can verify the person and open the door with a click of a button — all from your smartphone. Another scenario might be if an incident occurs where the cash office is broken into, ACT365 allows you to simply click on the access control event “Door Forced” to locate and review video of the incident whether you are in or out of the office. Without ACT365, the existing alternatives involve being on site, trying to match up times on disparate security systems and sifting through reams of footage to locate the incident.

ACT365 also has a new feature that offers contact traceability reporting that helps system users adhere to new health and safety standards due to COVID-19. For example, ACT365 users can now:

  • Track potentially infected employees and the doors accessed
  • View a list of cardholders who accessed the same door/room
  • Contact any employee utilizing data from an exported Excel report
  • Monitor doors that require cleaning or disinfecting
  • Issue a free QR code to be used as a temporary badge

CS: How does Vanderbilt and its offerings address the needs of hospitals, schools and/or universities?

Widlitz: Part of the appeal of the SMS system in these markets is its ability to scale as needs change and facilities expand. Campuses often are made up of a number of outbuildings that must be equally protected with access control capabilities, readers, fire and intrusion alarms, and video. SMS makes it easier to bring these into the fold of the overall system because of its flexibility in adding users, restricting those who have access and adding additional devices. Centralized management is crucial for both the healthcare and education markets, as the threats to these locations are constantly evolving.

CS: What else is new or noteworthy about Vanderbilt for 2020?

Widlitz: Some of the new features and integrations we’ve been working on include the introduction of WaveLynx Technologies Readers and Credentials to our portfolio, as well as a Vanderbilt Mobile Credential solution that requires no cost or commitment for download and usage. Another exciting feature we are launching is support for the Schlage ENGAGE series wireless locks with the Vanderbilt ACT365 cloud-based access control solution. This integration provides an elegant wireless solution between the locks and the ENGAGE Gateway, with networked, real-time communication to the controller.

CS: What is Vanderbilt’s overall value proposition to schools, universities and/or hospitals? Why should they do business with you?

Widlitz: Education and healthcare facilities are two of our biggest customer segments in North America and internationally, which demonstrates our knowledge of the unique challenges these organizations face with regard to access control and video/visitor management. The vast majority of our case studies feature testimonials about the level of customization that Vanderbilt offers when implementing the SMS platform, as well as other solutions like ACT365. The customer service and training offered through our organization brings something unique to the table that many other manufacturers can’t deliver. In essence, the longevity of our customer and partner relationships within the healthcare and education spaces are second-to-none.

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