Amsterdam Airport has to satisfy about 55 million passengers on a yearly basis. It is their aim to make the waiting time as pleasant as possible, and offering good shopping facilities is on top of that list. Amsterdam Airport offers many shopping possibilities on airside (See Buy Fly) as well as on landside (Schiphol Plaza). As a result of the high level of security and the continuous process of the airport, giving access to the shops is an interesting challenge for a company like CaptureTech.
Airport Retailers Association
The shops on airside are united in the Airport Retailers Association (ARA). This organization collectively takes care of the facility management, the security and all other retail aspects at Amsterdam Airport. Mr. Alex van den Hoek is Managing Director of ARA and responsible for the security and facility management.
Opening of Shops is Crucial
Alex van den Hoek: “The travel experience of the passenger starts at Amsterdam Airport and to be able to do shopping in a relaxed atmosphere is part of that; Passengers should therefore not end up in front of a closed door. That would not only mean a loss of turnover for the retailer, but also a disappointment for the traveler. We obviously want to avoid that and a reliable and safe issue and collection of keys contributes to that.” Access to the shops should be possible 24/7 as well as warehouse employees. In total, about 1.700 users need safe access to over 100 sets of keys.
From 1999 to 2013 the issue and collection of keys was taken care of by 2 key management systems. These systems made use of key fobs that had to make a physical contact in the system in order to be identified and were hence very vulnerable for dirt. In the event the key fob was dirty, the user could not issue or collect keys, with all negative consequences as a result. On the management side, the software was outdated and problematic. For example, the system could not handle 1.700 users very well, resulting in a lot of time wasted on the management of the system. Furthermore, the communication between the 2 systems was also outdated and the response time of the supplier was too long. Enough reasons for ARA to start looking for a new solution.
After making an inventory of the wishes and requirements, CaptureTech has developed a tailored solution for ARA, that consists of two KeyConductor systems based on UHF RFID with a large integrated touch screen as a user interface. The basis of the system is the UHF RFID KeyCop. The KeyCop is not vulnerable for dirt, dust, or moisture and data transfer via UHF RFID (wireless) is incredibly fast. The central management application is very user friendly and offers a lot of management information, which is used for the monthly reporting to the retailers. This solution, to which ARA heavily contributed, has become a basis for CaptureTech’s Key Management systems in general.
Implementation and Daily Use
The transition from the old system to the new KeyConductor has been planned well and was executed to ARA’s full satisfaction. Some weeks in advance the master data in the software were entered and within 24 hours, the old cabinets were removed and replaced for the new KeyConductors. The users are also very satisfied with the new KeyConductor system, which offers them a safe and reliable solution. Issue and collection of keys goes quickly, efficiently, and without any mistakes. Thus, the shops are opened on time and the passengers can do their shopping to their satisfaction!