Morse Watchmans’ Open Architecture Opens the Door to Innovation

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Newly Developed Software Brings Added Value to KeyWatcher® Key Control Systems

One of the more challenging issues that end users and integrators have faced over the years is the problem of upgrading a physical security system without having to replace the existing system.

To help address this obstacle, Morse Watchmans has developed their KeyWatcher® key control and management system with open architecture that offers the ability to integrate highly efficient technologies to increase functionality and performance and improve ROI (Return on Investment).

As explained by Jason Leach, the managing director of Australian Security Technology (AST), the open architecture of the system allowed his company to develop KeyPro Plus (KPP), a software enhancement to Morse Watchmans’ KeyPro management software. Now, instead of upgrading or replacing hardware, end users can simply upgrade the software on their KeyWatcher system to utilise additional features.

The idea to develop the KPP software occurred a few years ago, in response to requests for additional key control systems from the Australian government. At the time, there was no unified purchase policy for key control systems, and each department could order as needed from the government purchasing schedule without regard for compatibility or overall system integration.

AST had previously engineered a number of third-party interfaces with the KeyWatcher product to meet the unique demands of the Australian market, and believed a similar approach could be taken for the government. With several KeyWatcher systems in place throughout the government departments, AST focused efforts on creating a solution that would allow these departments to maintain their existing systems but with enhanced functionality and integration capability.

AST had already developed a management software product called KW Exchange for use in commercial and vehicle fleet management key control applications where they had installed the KeyWatcher. The open architecture made the development of KW Exchange possible. AST then built on this experience and knowledge to develop the new and enhanced software. The name was changed, with Morse Watchmans’ approval, from KW Exchange to KeyPro Plus to more accurately reflect its capabilities.

Mr. Leach says, “Without an open architecture platform and Morse Watchmans’ support and co-operation, we would never have been able to develop our KeyPro Plus software. Also, if the KeyWatcher hardware wasn’t as good as it is, we would have had a problem.”

With the development of the KPP software, AST was able to offer the government an enhanced solution that not only provided added functionality but also allowed integration with the department’s access control system. This also meant that any existing KeyWatcher did not have to be replaced but could be upgraded with KPP. This three-legged solution turned out to be a win-win for both AST and the government – AST created a pathway to maintain their customer, and the government gained better value for their money.

According to Mr. Leach, the implementation of the KPP software may have also prompted a change in the department’s operational procedures. Because of the integration between the key control and the access control, the two are now managed under a single platform for more centralised control.

As Mr. Leach points out, the benefits of a KeyWatcher system, coupled with the KPP software, are numerous. Essentially there is no end of life for the KeyWatcher hardware as the KPP software allows older systems to be upgraded with newer functionality, or new systems can be brought online and there is no appreciable difference in the functionality.

“This is a solution where everyone wins,” adds Mr. Leach. “Most importantly though, security is improved and that’s what it is all about.”

For further information, please visit Australian Security Technology at www.astpl.com.au or call 61 2 80 20 5555.

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