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Heinemann – Retail

Heinemann and the then SYNO Global (now Alpha Global) worked together on a range of innovative surveillance solutions as part of the organisations refurbishments within Sydney airport. A project that started with a trial back in 2018

Heinemann Duty Free

“Being able to understand foot traffic has been one of the biggest benefits. Now we can review traffic patterns across all stores to understand high-performing products, store layouts and human behaviour.”

Melissa Cabral-Hale 
Head of Logistics, Supply Chain & Compliance

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Retail Outlets
200 +
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Heinemann Australia operates nine HEINEMANN Tax & Duty Free sites across Sydney and Gold Coast, and one Hermès boutique at Sydney International Airport.

Heinemann Australia is proud to boast a dedicated crew of over 300 team members, delivering on exceptional brand and service promises in terminals. 

After trialling a number of different surveillance solutions in 2018, the SYNO Global (now Alpha Global) and Verkada solution was the clear winner based on three (3) major contributing factors which included;

  • Total cost of ownership over a 10-year period due to the products 10-year warranty on hardware.
  • Supported the organisations plan to moving to the cloud for all business systems.
  • Introduction of smart features such as people analytics, floorplan management and ease of use for field staff.

The above three (3) requirements were built into the organisations 10-year plan for the retail group of stores within the Sydney International Airport and associated refurbishments to modernise compliance operations whilst being able intelligently call upon human focused AI data to provide better retail operations, marketing promotions and store management.

The Challenge

The existing system, being a legacy 200+ CCTV camera system deployed across multiple large retail spaces, had been nothing more than a pain point for all departments involved in having to manage and utilise the system for security and compliance reasons.   

Running across a cluster of servers and storage devices, camera servers were being accessed from a remote head office to enable incident and theft investigations. Without incorporating any modern video security smart’s, the system was essentially being used for time-consuming rewind, play and export purposes only. In most cases, retrieving footage for an isolated event resulted in consuming hours of wasted time that could have otherwise been used more efficiently. Secondly, remote users were forced to double hop just to access the system. This involved creating a VPN tunnel, then having to load a locally installed application to access the recording server.

  • No smarts with minimal value-add
  • High upkeep effort for system management and user access
  • Difficult and frustrating to use system with high-failure rates

Considering investigations are performed by a team of compliance users, the impact on providing reports and video evidence to both internal management teams and local enforcement officials is often delayed resulting in impact to retail operations and policy obligations. From an ICT perspective, granting and managing access to the recording software was one of the most insecure and problematic components of the overall system. With no integration into corporate security services such as active directory, ICT teams were maintaining a bespoke system that was difficult to manage from both a service level but also from a user’s perspective.

Why Alpha Global?

The Alpha Global/Verkada solution provided enterprise grade smart surveillance technology that introduced a range of AI-powered analytical features that supports compliance, technology and retail operations without 3rd party integrations and heavy infrastructure requirements (such as servers or NVRs).

Based on the specification requirements from Heinemann, the solution was able to meet and provide;

  • Enterprise AI-powered analytics for floorplan utilisation, notifications, persons of interest, crowding and much more.
  • Improving compliance and security operations for ease of access during investigations from head office or remote.
    30% cost savings vs. related overheads and infrastructure associated with traditional NVR based systems due to hardware removal.
  • Supports the organisations shift to the cloud as Verkada is a client-less and server-less solution.
    Single platform for all stores across the country with granular-segmented user access from any device at any time.
  • Data accessible externally by managed users across multiple stores without the need for VPN or firewall port configuration to ensure a secure environment.

Modern security solutions such as Verkada now provide feature-rich benefits that enable enterprises to move beyond traditional surveillance system, opening opportunity to not only provide core surveillance requirements, but also analytics with a human focus. These types of smarts provide evidence based support for store planning, marketing, product placement and promotional initiatives – adding immediate value on top of core competency of such systems.

Final Takeaway

“The scalability of the solution was a huge advantage, allowing us to easily roll out and manage across all of our locations. In addition the 30% cost saving achieved was a huge win across the business”

Federico Abis | IT Manager 

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