The University of Hull has brought their access control technology into the mobile age. To better serve its students while also increasing security throughout the campus, the university partnered with HID Global, a worldwide leader in trusted identity solutions. The partnership has provided the university more efficient access control to campus buildings and has improved the experience for students and staff.
The University of Hull manages abogcfut 25,000 students and 2,500 staff identities with an expected increase in students year over year. Students and staff were accessing housing accommodations, lecture halls, libraries, research buildings, and other secure locations with old access card technology.
To improve their security, the University of Hull updated their magnetic stripe (magstripe) cards to contactless technology several years ago, but still found the solution lacking. Issuing thousands of access cards and maintaining credentials was logistically demanding and inefficient.
“As you can imagine, over 520 people arriving at student residences for the weekend, with all of their parents, grandparents, dogs and others, is quite chaotic,” said Gary Moore of the University’s ICT Department.
Beyond the laborious upkeep of physical cards, the University of Hull – like many other universities – found that students often lost or misplaced their student IDs/ access cards. The University of Hull sought to reduce the need for staffing and late night disturbances caused by students who lost their cards.
The university wanted a new solution that could be integrated into their current secure access software, while also being able to efficiently issue and manage student IDs. The new solution also needed to be easy for students to adopt. While security was imperative for the university, they didn’t want it to create a hassle for students and staff using the new solution.
The University of Hull partnered with HID Global to increase security while improving their identity management process and the student experience at the same time. The university deployed iCLASS SE® readers and HID Mobile Access®, which make it possible for students to carry their IDs (that also contain their access credentials) on their smartphones. Now, students and staff simply use their mobile phones, smartwatch, and other mobile devices to quickly and conveniently access buildings across the campus.
HID Mobile Access integrates with the University of Hull’s security software, provided by Genetec, and eliminates redundancy in the workflow required to manage identities.
“The university considers secure access control to be very important for the safety of the students and staff. It’s not only good for a student, it’s also good for their parents to know that there is solid security around the student residences,” said Gary Moore, “HID and Genetec have seamlessly integrated the mobile access offering so that now all I have to do is add a credential into the Genetec system, which auto-populates the HID Mobile Access Portal. This simplifies my process. Now, I just enter information once to provision a credential–unlike the previous two-step process.”
“The benefits and advantages for having mobile access will definitely come to the fore next year when we register mobile credentials prior to student arrival,” added Moore, “We can have students’ mobile IDs pre-deployed before arrivals. From the students’ perspective, they just arrive and start using their smartphone to access their room. It’s far easier.”
To enter a secured door, students and staff present their mobile device to an iCLASS SE reader for access.
With HID Mobile Access, the University of Hull stepped up their security and reduced the need for physical access cards that are cumbersome to manage and often misplaced by students. Moving to a mobile infrastructure for access control had many benefits including:
- Seamless integration with third-party software and devices.
- Higher user satisfaction.
- Increased efficiency.
- Ease of use.
When surveyed, students reported positive feedback from using HID Mobile Access. “It makes the university a lot more attractive for students,” said Mark Mullaney, Assistant Director of Commercial Services at the University of Hull, “For the student, it provides a more secure way to access buildings and provides a better experience for them overall, and for the university itself, it is a recruitment tool that we can offer to incoming students.”