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Between its numerous casino, hotel and resort properties operating in several different markets across the United States, Camberry Casinos* employs over seven thousand people and serves several thousand more on a daily basis. With all these people comes a wide range of potential security issues—theft, assault and underage gambling among them. Camberry’s surveillance team works around the clock, monitoring activity through a vast network of video cameras, while the company’s security officers respond to incidents as they happen.
Given the sheer volume of incidents documented by Camberry’s surveillance and security teams (hundreds of reports are filed daily), Camberry requires an automated Incident Reporting system that is straightforward and simple to use, facilitating accurate and consistent incident documentation enterprise-wide.
Originally, staff at each property employed their own Incident Reporting process; tracking methods varied from Microsoft® Word documents to Excel® spreadsheets. By 1998, the security team at the Camberry Casino Hotel in greater metropolitan Reno* had launched IRIMS, the leading Incident Reporting software system among corporate security departments at the time. Six years later, after recognizing its value in consolidating information for litigation, Camberry deployed IRIMS across all of its security teams enterprise-wide. One year later, in 2005, the corporation’s surveillance teams were brought on board as well.
Although IRIMS revolutionized Incident Reporting at Camberry, they soon realized that the system—originally developed in 1988—had significant design limitations for an implementation of this scope and magnitude. Its user interface and technological platform were dated. Furthermore, adding properties and teams over a seven-year time span, while amalgamating data tracked through various means, had resulted in a complex system that was difficult to maintain and contained many inconsistencies.
According to Ron Smith* , Corporate Security and Surveillance Systems Manager* for Camberry, the complexities of Camberry’s use of IRIMS occasionally led to discrepancies in Incident Reporting: “There were a lot of inconsistencies in our IRIMS system. For instance, there was more than one way for an incident to be categorized in our system, so data was not always entered the same way. As a result, the system was really quite messy. We restricted the use of IRIMS to a limited number of key people to minimize these issues, but ultimately, we needed to streamline our processes to make things easier for our team.”
Clearly, in order to efficiently track, analyze and report on incident activity for effective response and outright prevention, Camberry required an automated Incident Reporting system that they could set up right from the start with a current technological backbone offering a high degree of enterprise scalability.
After researching their options for moving forward, Camberry narrowed their list of candidates down to three leading automated Incident Reporting systems, and by the corporation’s Security Summit in 2006, a clear front runner had emerged— the next generation of IRIMS—Resolver. Susan Kedzo, a Resolver Senior Account Manager, had presented the solution at the Summit, and both Ron Smith and Camberry’s security directors were very impressed with the system’s capabilities.
States Smith: “It was actually me and one of our directors who made the decision to really move forward and fight to get Resolver. We both have very similar analytical minds and really like to pull valuable information from our data, so the potential we saw in Resolver for analysis, charting and graphing was very powerful in shaping our decision. Not only was Resolver attractive from an analytical point of view, but it looked much cleaner and easier to use from an end user standpoint as well. Of course, our IRIMS data could be migrated over to the new system, and we also have an excellent working relationship with Resolver. All of these factors were important in our selection of Resolver over the other systems we considered.”
By October 2007, within a few short months of Camberry’s purchase of the system, Resolver was up and running across Camberry’s security and surveillance teams corporate-wide, with all of the company’s existing IRIMS data available for continued querying and reporting.
Years later, when asked which of Resolver’s features is most beneficial to Camberry, Smith believes the system’s ease of use is key for Camberry’s Resolver users: “I really do think that ease of use for the end users is the application’s number one feature. The system is so straightforward and simple that our users don’t have any trouble figuring out where they need to enter information. As a result, we also find it very easy to train new users on Resolver. Considering the number of people Camberry has using this system in various parts of the country, that’s a huge benefit for us.”
Currently, Camberry has over 600 Resolver users enterprise-wide. In addition, the legal, risk management and internal audit departments all have read-only access to the tool, meaning they can view records, query data and generate reports to access valuable information. As Smith explains, the widespread use of Resolver across Camberry is the direct result of the system’s simplicity and straightforward end user experience: “Because Resolver is so much easier to use than IRIMS, we have expectations for more people to use it. With IRIMS, access was restricted to key people within security and surveillance, and no one else in the company was allowed to use the system. If someone from risk management or another outside department needed some information, I would access it for them. IRIMS users had to really know what they were doing; whereas Resolver spells it out a little bit more. As a result, we’ve been able to open the system up to so many more people in the organization. While only a limited number of people in security and surveillance used IRIMS, almost everyone in those departments now uses Resolver.”
Due to Resolver’s intuitive and straightforward setup, data is entered accurately and consistently. This has been a tremendous benefit for Camberry when dealing with employee accidents and injuries. Any time an accident or injury occurs onsite, an incident report noting all the relevant details is entered into Resolver. Among the information included in the report are copies of all requisite paperwork, such as signed statements from the employees involved, and photographs of the incident scene and involved persons, particularly shots of any visible injuries. Later on, if an employee files a workers’ compensation claim for an injury incurred from the incident, Camberry can reference the incident record to verify the employee’s claim. If there is a discrepancy between the employee’s signed statement at the time of the incident and their later claim, or between the original photographic evidence and the claim, Camberry has compelling evidence that the injury claim may be fraudulent.
Having such accurate, point-in-time documentation has saved Camberry substantial sums of money. Smith elaborates: “Our workers’ compensation claims have gone down significantly since implementing Resolver, simply because our risk managers have everything they need right at their fingertips. With Resolver, paperwork doesn’t get lost, and no one has to run down to the archives looking for information. All the documentation is right there in one place, and it’s indisputable. It is unbelievable how much money Camberry has saved by using Resolver to verify workers’ compensation claims; this expenditure has been more than cut in half. In fact, because the savings for the company have been so profound, management has specifically commended our department for our diligent, thorough and accurate record-keeping.”
Camberry’s solid incident documentation is not only useful for future reference and verification, but it also offers nearly limitless querying and reporting potential. In particular, Smith has found tremendous value in Analysis Expert, Resolver’s built-in querying engine. In addition to one-off queries that Smith is asked to run on request, he has created and saved a variety of queries for monitoring particular incident categories, incidents at specific properties and a number of other metrics. He runs these on a daily, weekly or monthly basis, depending on the query, and reports the results to a number of stakeholders across the company, including managers of outside departments and senior executives.
As with Resolver’s data forms, Smith is very pleased with Analysis Expert’s ease of use: “Analysis Expert is the best! I really like the way the information is presented after I run my queries. It’s so clean and easy to read. And I don’t even have to export my results to sort or filter out the data I need; I can do all that within Analysis Expert, including building charts and graphs to better represent the data. The overall layout of the program is worlds above IRIMS.”
With Resolver’s user-friendly querying and reporting options, Camberry is able to easily spot incident patterns and trends, and more effectively problem-solve security issues. In addition to Analysis Expert, Smith finds the Frequency Distribution Report in Resolver’s Report Gallery particularly useful for identifying and exploring trends in incident activity: “A few years ago, I noticed that we were really seeing an increase in underage activity at our casinos. By running the Frequency Distribution Report, I was able to examine this trend in-depth and break it down to see which days of the week, shifts and times of day had the highest underage activity. Then, using this information, we were able to look for the reasons that underage activity was so prevalent during these time periods and find ways to prevent it. Trend analysis and reporting are critical to our security operations at Camberry. We always find resolve through monitoring trends, analyzing the underlying causes for increases and decreases in particular types of activity, and directing our security efforts toward incident prevention.”
Because Camberry can easily identify, analyze and report on incident patterns and trends with Resolver, they have even been able to assist law enforcement in solving cases. On one occasion, Camberry’s Resolver data was critical in breaking up a vehicle theft ring at the Camberry Casino Hotel in Las Vegas* . After analyzing all vehicle theft incidents occurring at the property, Camberry’s security team realized, among other things, that every stolen vehicle was a Dodge Stratus. On further investigation in PerspectiveResolver, more patterns emerged, and eventually, with the help of law enforcement, the perpetrators were arrested on Camberry’s property. Smith recalls:
“Without Resolver, nobody may have ever realized these incidents all involved the same make and model of car. It’s possible we may never have caught the people responsible. Using information drawn from Resolver, Camberry has helped law enforcement considerably on more than one occasion.”
Further, Camberry has used pattern and trend data gathered from Resolver to help perform labor analysis. By identifying the days and times that incident activity is highest, Camberry can determine when additional staff are required most, and by examining the types of incident activity that are most prevalent, Camberry can instruct staff to focus their efforts where they will make the greatest impact.
While this information is certainly useful in allocating resources more effectively, it is also useful in justifying current security expenditures. In addition to incident records and investigation logs in Resolver, Camberry can draw on data from Resolver DispatchLog—an optional Dispatching and Activity Tracking module —to analyze security officers’ day to-day activities. For instance, if a security officer escorts an intoxicated patron from a casino, this activity will not be tracked in Resolver as no actual incident occurred; however, the activity’s details, including the officer’s name, the time the officer was called by casino staff to perform the walk-out and the time the walk-out took place, will all be noted in DispatchLog. In conjunction with the incident data tracked in Resolver, DispatchLog’s records are invaluable in proving the utility of security officers and justifying the costs associated with staffing them.
Clearly, the benefits Camberry has experienced from using Resolver are numerous and varied. But, of course, the true test of Resolver’s value for any organization lies in its ROI. When asked whether he believes Camberry’s investment in Resolver has paid off, Smith answers emphatically: “Absolutely! Resolver really started to pay off about a year after implementation, once we had a full year’s worth of data to pull from for trend identification and analysis. And, in some cases, it could have been sooner. For example, in litigation where we could reference data from our records, we may have received ROI from Resolver within six months.”
Moving forward, Smith is incredibly excited about further capitalizing on Camberry’s Resolver ROI with Resolver Focal Point, an optional Business Intelligence module. Late in 2009, Smith received a hands-on introduction to Focal Point during a Resolver Training Session. After experiencing Focal Point’s dynamic charts, graphs and data mining potential firsthand, Smith believes the application will allow him to access critical metrics in mere seconds, rather than the days or weeks required to create similar reports manually. In anticipation of these time savings and future ROI, Smith is anxious to put Focal Point to work on Camberry’s Resolver database as soon as possible: “I must say I am incredibly excited to get Focal Point up and running at Camberry. I can’t wait to see what it’s going to do for us, and how it will increase the value of our Resolver data.”
Resolver would like to thank Ron Smith* and Camberry Casinos* for sharing their experiences.
*Company and individual names, titles and locations have been changed in order to protect the identity of the groups involved. All other information is true and accurate.