LEAN Assessment Inspires Efficiency Gains for Large Corporation’s Physical Security Operations Center


Case Study: IT Infrastructure, Cloud, and ITSM

Situation and Business Needs

A large multinational corporation wanted to drive greater efficiency in its global security operations center (GSOC). The center oversees physical security and the health and welfare of employees and on-site guests for all its worldwide locations, monitoring for incidents and alarms and managing emergency communications and coordination for events that span a variety of severities including natural disaster.

The corporation outsourced physical security management to a leading security provider and manages that provider closely. Although the provider conducted regular self-assessments and provided excellent service, the company wanted to maintain peak performance by making processes more efficient throughout the organization–locally, nationally, and internationally.

AIM Consulting was chosen to bring expertise in process evaluation and optimization and to produce a roadmap that would increase efficiencies across the organization and improve event identification and response. GSOC personnel primarily hailed from a security background, so they tended to view their environment from an incident-based perspective, similar to a police dispatch/responder; accordingly, the security center had a strong capability to respond to incidents in a timely fashion. The company welcomed an outside perspective and the capabilities it found in AIM Consulting’s Lean expertise.

Solution

AIM performed an exhaustive assessment of the company’s North America-based operational center processes over a period of 12 weeks, with the intention of expanding the learnings to the firm’s international centers.

The assessment included three phases:

  1. A discovery phase gathering large amounts of data regarding the organization’s current state. AIM looked at organizational data from numerous channels of communication, including response times to alarms and safety incidents, employee badging events at building entrances, biometric security system data, staffing, workflow, and management of video camera systems.
  2. An analysis phase where the collected data was synthesized and a gap analysis performed against benchmarks from best practices derived from AIM’s experience in assessing other large organizations.
  3. A final state of recommendations, including a roadmap that demonstrated how to achieve organizational objectives and gain efficiencies over a period of time.

AIM used Lean methods and techniques to evaluate the organization from both a process and personnel perspective. The assessment revealed ways to add efficiency to processes such as staffing cycles, alarm response time-frames, and internal communications and notifications in response to events.

The roadmap also laid out major recommendations for improving the vendor company’s technology to better support the enabling of improved workflow and the integration of information. AIM found a number of opportunities where the organization could improve and manage things more efficiently. As an example, there were redundant data collection efforts due to complementary systems needing similar information, but having no integration between them. AIM also identified work that was not core to the organization’s mission, which allowed them to redirect work priorities where value was not enhancing their commitment to their mission around life and safety.

Results

AIM’s deep experience evaluating organizational performance provided the GSOC with the expertise needed for getting to a roadmap and strategy to improve the organization over time. The company has seen immediate benefit from implementing the recommendations and has firm plans to implement further recommendations using the provided roadmap. Company leaders benefited greatly from AIM’s knowledgeable outside perspective and experience. From this base of knowledge, AIM asked questions and was able to drive expert analysis and recommendations that prepared the GSOC to provide better services in the future.

AIM has since been tasked to conduct further analysis of each identified service, help implement more short-term improvements, and make further recommendations to enhance security operations services.

“Because we have deep knowledge in driving efficiencies through Lean, agile, and other methodologies in enterprise IT organizations, we were used to the high-volume operations center situations and were able to bring eye-opening ideas to the table for an operations center that was focused on physical security.”

— Shawn McCoy, Principal Consultant, AIM Consulting


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