Customer Success Story

The University of Wisconsin Simplifies System Design & Device Maintenance with System Surveyor

Streamlining system documentation, resource accessibility, and lifecycle management for 157 buildings across a 936-acre university campus

Skip Ahead: Challenge  |  Solution  |  Results

About University of Wisconsin

The University of Wisconsin is a top-ranked research institution located in Madison, Wisconsin, providing exceptional education opportunities to undergraduates, graduate and professional students.

Courtesy of University of Wisconsin-Madison

CHALLENGE: Expansive campus, extensive security technology

Nestled in the heart of Madison, the University of Wisconsin—the largest university in the state—houses more than 49,000 students on its 936-acre campus. With Lake Mendota to the north and the state’s capital to the east, the University’s Access, Video, and Infrastructure Security (AVIS) unit works diligently to protect its students from an array of unique threats.

“Being up against a city presents challenges, because we’re not a secluded campus,” said Security Systems Specialist at the University of Wisconsin Patrick Bucci. “We have dozens of ways in an out of campus, which presents concerns about everything from theft and trespassing to the ever-looming possibility an active shooter event.”

Over the last several years, the University has made significant investments in its electronic security solutions, in order to reinforce their existing infrastructure, which now includes a robust surveillance camera system, as well as 5,000 access control points that feature biometric scanners, scheduling systems, so on.

“With renovation and new construction projects popping up every year, these numbers are only growing,” Bucci added.

As their electronic infrastructure has continued to expand, however, the AVIS team found that the system they used to record and maintain the devices they deployed in each of the campus’ 157 buildings was no longer able to keep up.

“In the past, we relied on a lot of manual data entry: excel files, folders upon folders in a shared drive,” Bucci said. “Beyond all that, though, the bulk of our approach to lifecycle management came down to institutional knowledge. The longer you worked at the University, the more familiar you were with each building on campus. Obviously, that’s not a sustainable model.”

Once they realized they needed to rethink their approach to device management, the University of Wisconsin looked to System Surveyor.

SOLUTION: System Surveyor helps to plan, document & manage life-cycle

In 2022, the AVIS unit contacted System Surveyor to demo their cloud-based, collaborative system design platform to experiment with documenting physical security, IT, and technology assets using a digital resource. Integrating System Surveyor into their workflow would mean deploying an all-in-one system design tool that would allow their team to plan, design, budget, implement, and maintain all devices deployed across campus.

By the end of the demo, the entire AVIS unit was overwhelmingly supportive.

“Whenever a concern was raised before, we had to walk over to the building, physically survey and assess the devices we had deployed, and then go from there,” Bucci said. “With System Surveyor, we have one central resource we can access that offers us a detailed visual for reference. Before we even show up, we know exactly what needs to be done.”

With drag-and-drop simplicity, System Surveyor ensures users like the AVIS unit have everything they need to evaluate the unique security needs of every indoor and outdoor space on campus, collaboratively visualize a proposed system configuration, and oversee the maintenance of each device, once deployed. With automated budgeting tools, fast auto-sync to the cloud, and an easy-to-use interface, System Surveyor closed the gap between the AVIS office and the rest of campus.

RESULTS: Ability to provide visuals to stakeholders & accurately keep a digital as-built

Right off the bat, System Surveyor helped the AVIS unit collaborate, engage, and efficiently manage their campus-wide security system in a new way. The tool that first stood out to them was System Surveyor’s Element Profiles, which allows users to pre-configure and select the most common physical security products available for more streamlined filtering and selection.

“After all,” Bucci said, “a door isn’t just a door, it has any number of different hardware that transform that door into a secure access point.”

The AVIS unit was also thrilled to be able to reference a single, detailed digital as-built that includes all the project details of their system design, including security devices and product specifications, costs, layout, and contacts involved, faithfully representing the devices deployed across the University’s campus.

“One of the biggest things that System Surveyor has given us is the ability to provide visuals to our University’s stakeholders throughout the system design and proposal process,” Bucci said. “It offers us the ability to create floor plans that show all the devices currently deployed, which makes renovations and upgrades that much easier.”

Looking forward, the AVIS unit anticipates that System Surveyor will help them do much more than catalog their existing infrastructure to simplify device maintenance. Bucci explained that System Surveyor will be crucial to ensuring that the University of Wisconsin continues to deploy best-in-class physical security infrastructure to protect students, staff, and visitors alike.

“From day one, the team at System Surveyor has been great,” Bucci said. “The tool is incredibly easy to use, but the team is also a pleasure to work with.”

Start growing with System Surveyor today.

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About System Surveyor

The System Surveyor mobile, SaaS-based platform enables everyone involved in system design, installation, and maintenance to collaborate on an unprecedented scale. Working together in one system of record, professionals can better plan and manage the systems organizations rely on every day: video surveillance, access control, fire alarm, IT, building automation, AV, healthcare, and more. From system integrators to end customers to subcontractors, the benefits are increased sales, faster project completions, higher satisfaction, and enhanced long-term service levels. Based in Austin, Texas, System Surveyor can be found at