Arena Keeps an Eye on Everything Remotely Using Brivo and Eagle Eye Cloud VMS
October 19, 2021
Arena, a PTC business, provides software as a service (SaaS) for product lifecycle management and quality management to help enterprises manage their entire product lifecycle, from design to manufacturing through supply chain.
When Senior Director of IT Services, Rob O’Neal, came onboard in August of 2018, he found a company using a lot of antiquated systems, and set out to help modernize Arena’s technologies.
“The access control system, for example, was only working for Austin and Foster City and the system itself was just a server sitting inside the Foster City office,” says O’Neal. “IT was responsible for setting up access and managing the process, which was very time consuming. And, the existing system was so old, there was no documentation to help us figure out how to optimize it. I had a small team and I was looking for ways to save myself and my staff time. I knew there were better solutions out there.”
O’Neal had previous experience with Brivo, so he started there. He also knew he wanted to expand the access control system to include video surveillance, and soon discovered the Brivo and Eagle Eye Networks relationship.
“I looked into Eagle Eye Cloud Video Management System (VMS) and its integration with Brivo’s access control,” explains O’Neal. “It fit our needs from a tech perspective, meaning it was cloud based, easy to use, and the price was right.”
Eagle Eye set him up with its partner and national integrator,
NAVCO. “I wanted a single relationship with a national reseller; someone who could service all our facilities,” says O’Neal. “We put together a plan for all three U.S. offices and it was pretty much turnkey. NAVCO very efficiently pulled out the old systems and installed the new, and we were up and running with zero disruption to the business.”
With Brivo, employees can now use Brivo Mobile Pass or standard access control cards with a unique PIN (personal identification number) to gain access to Arena’s facilities. Mobile Pass is a new feature for Arena employees that allows them to use their phones to gain access to facilities. Instead of carrying around real badges, users now simply use their phones to obtain entry to venues. In addition, the IT team could see live and recorded video of all entrances via Eagle Eye Cloud VMS.
Now that O’Neal had the U.S. offices where he needed them from both a standards and operational perspective, he started to plan for the Suzhou office. Then COVID-19 hit. Not long after, Arena was acquired by PTC.
The pandemic, then the acquisition, both uncovered new, unforeseen benefits of the system. Once offices shut down due to COVID restrictions, the system shifted from helping employees access buildings to ensuring no one was entering unsolicited.
“Initially, when we went into lockdown, I used the access control and cameras to ensure employees were not going into the office,” explains O’Neal. “I set up notifications through the VMS to alert me if someone entered any one of our three facilities.”
As the pandemic continued, Arena, like all businesses, had to change the way it off-boarded employees. Upon leaving, employees were required to drop off company equipment they’d used during lockdown. When O’Neal couldn’t physically be present to check equipment back in, he used Brivo to remotely unlock entrances, verifying the user via the integrated video feeds attached to the access events, and then disabling access for all exiting employees. The combined solution meant O’Neal could quickly and efficiently identify employees, see what equipment they dropped off, and confirm they exited the building.
The same use case applied to deliveries. O’Neal used his cameras to identify the delivery person, see the package, open the door remotely, then make sure the deliverer promptly exited.
When PTC acquired Arena, company leaders asked for system reports to determine pre-COVID traffic and how it differed from traffic during the pandemic, and once the office was reopened
on a voluntary basis. With Brivo, reporting on access events, occupancy, and traffic patterns was simple and intuitive. “The PTC facilities team was trying to determine how busy the offices were,” says O’Neal. “The data will weigh into future plans for potentially consolidating offices once we return to a flex schedule – meaning employees must be in the office at least two days a week – come January of 2022.”
Thus far, the integrated system has delivered everything O’Neal and his organization sought three years ago. “Brivo and Eagle Eye have taken the burden off my small staff,” he concludes. “Because they’re cloud based, we don’t have to continually manage, maintain, or upgrade the systems. We’re confident our cameras are running, and we can just jump on a browser, log in, and have eyes on everything from anywhere.”