Western Cape CIDs get timely software and security boost

CIDs_Tiaan Janse van Rensburg, Solution House

Residents living and working in Cape Town’s progressive City Improvement Districts (CIDs) have been boosted by the introduction of new software that promises to improve security and overall maintenance services.

The majority of Cape Town’s major CIDs – namely Groote Schuur, Claremont, Wynberg, Voortrekker Road, Observatory and Woodstock – are now managed by Securitas using Incident Desk – a locally-developed incident management software from Solution House.

According to Jeremy Horner, Business Development Director, Securitas South Africa larger CIDs average 2,000 to 3,000 incident reports a month, so the company needed a way to consolidate its incident reports and integrate multiple monitoring and reporting systems both within and between the various CIDs on its books.

“We deliver these services in support of – and in collaboration with – city-funded resources such as the South African Police Service (SAPS) and Metro Police, so we’re complementing rather than replacing their functions in these areas. To do so effectively requires substantial logistical resources, including powerful software tools that help us record, manage and report on all the data we need to manage in each CID.”

Horner said that while CIDs have become one of the major success factors in the upliftment of Western Cape communities, they also generate enormous amounts of data and deploy many different systems – both manual and electronic.

“One of the main challenges we face from a management perspective is breaking down the silos of information not only within a CID, but also between CIDs. This is where Incident Desk, with its consolidated view, smartphone app and ability to process information from different systems and management areas in real time, comes into its own.”

Tiaan Janse van Rensburg, Director, Solution House says public safety management is a good example because urban management companies often have to deal with many interrelated challenges such as social services, maintenance and by-laws.

“Using a single system that allows us to aggregate incident reports from these various sources and quickly see where, when and how often certain crimes take place in demarcated areas within a CID allows us to identify trends and ‘hotspots’ and predict when and where we’re likely to see them reoccur.”

“While Incident Desk consolidates information from any number of CIDs, it is actually part of a larger national urban management and public safety solution which centralises information for the whole of South Africa,” concludes Janse van Rensburg.