Founded in 1871, Germains Seed Technology provides growers with customized seed treatments that maximize crop yield with up to a 98% germination rate. Today, the company operates nine major production and R&D centers in the United States and Europe, with customers and partners worldwide who have sown the seeds of its results-driven approach.
Juan Yanez, Engineering & Facilities Manager, sought to modernize Germains’ physical security infrastructure and bring it on par with its innovative seed technologies. He spoke with us about how Verkada’s modern solution has helped the company improve security and optimize control over its facilities.
Germains' legacy systems were straining to keep pace with the company's performance needs. Security technologies were outdated, management applications were difficult to use, potential law enforcement-related fees for false alarms became an issue, and support from its service provider was inconsistent – if not entirely absent.
To extend operational capabilities and assurance, Germains decided to launch a digital transformation initiative to introduce IoT innovation into its processes for physical security and access control, environmental monitoring, alarms, and facility management. After a tender process, Germains chose Verkada to manage the transition.
Germains was very open to implementing an innovative IoT-led approach to make its facilities smarter, safer, more efficient, and more productive. Verkada provided a solution to not only improve systems for security and access control, but also connect to supply chain processes and support reducing enterprise risk and managing compliance.
The deployment includes indoor and outdoor security cameras, access control, alarms with 24/7 professional monitoring, and environmental sensors – all natively integrated to ensure seamless performance within a unified, easy-to-use software platform.
30% Cost Savings with 24/7 Intrusion Detection
“Even with upgraded services – around 12 more devices and the evolving feature set, consolidated within one software platform – we were able to save 30% cost annually. And that's just for the base service, not counting [saved costs] of the caught break-ins.”
An attempted car break-in caught by Verkada Alarms – video verified by US-based professional monitoring agents who will dispatch police if a visible threat is detected.
Despite being a significant expansion from the previous system, Verkada cost 30% less while delivering powerful new capabilities with evolving firmware updates, improved reliability with its hybrid cloud infrastructure, and 24/7 peace of mind with cloud-managed intrusion detection.
By leveraging data captured across Verkada devices – cameras, doors, environmental sensors, and intrusion sensors – Verkada Alarms enables Germains to catch, view, and respond to suspicious activity in real-time. Germains’ license includes 24/7 professional monitoring, so while sites are armed, trained operators at UL-Listed central stations are standing by to assess and help respond to incidents with controlled access to video feeds and emergency dispatch capabilities.
“Not only does Verkada allow us to remotely monitor all our operations, we're able to proactively protect our facilities and catch crimes in action. The combination of access control, video security, alarms and sensors helps prevent unauthorized access, see immediately into critical areas, and respond quickly to incidents as they unfold.”
Person of Interest alerts can be set to notify pre-designated administrators if repeat offenders are caught onsite.
Easy to Deploy and Scale
“Onboarding was simple because Verkada is so easy to use. I became fluent with the platform very quickly, and with very little help I was able to set up sites, users, and access in the way we wanted.”
Following hardware installation, Verkada was delivering business value within an hour. Doors are activated using key fobs and Juan can provision users according to role-based access for specific areas – e.g. production, research, administration, facilities management. Upper management can conveniently access Bluetooth-enabled doors through the Verkada Pass mobile app, and he can easily make adjustments as needed.
Additionally, activity from any Verkada device (including motion detection on cameras) can be easily configured as a trigger event to trip the alarm. For Juan, this means no additional intrusion sensor hardware or alarm panel is required, but can be added to increase the coverage of his Verkada ecosystem. To get started, all he needs is a Verkada device and software license with professional monitoring.
Simple, Efficient Single-Pane Control
“I easily manage all our building security from one platform. Not only can I view and share footage, but I can also monitor the environmental conditions, configure the alarm settings, and control the door access of users. It's super convenient and very user-friendly.”
Centralized security control allows Juan to do more with less complexity. From provisioning user credentials and configuring alarm settings, to monitoring spaces and responding to events from anywhere, Juan has a solution that provides a full picture of the health and safety of the environment, with tools that simplify management.
Monitoring Cold Room Environments
“By law, we keep a sample of all seed batches for three years. Verkada’s environmental sensor plays a key role in monitoring the Cold Room where these batches are stored, which must be kept between 8 - 11°F at all times. If anything is wrong, I get an immediate alert.”
The SV11 Environmental Sensor is used to proactively protect and ensure optimal conditions in Germains’ cold chain space. Tracking eight discrete readings – including temperature, humidity, and air quality – Juan is notified immediately if anomalies are detected. Combined with integrated video security and access control, Juan has visibility and control to effectively manage essential supply chain processes, ensure worker and asset safety, and efficiently meet rigorous risk and compliance obligations.
What's Next for Germains
Verkada serves as the backbone for critical business functions at Germains by integrating its security, access control, intrusion detection, incident response, and select supply chain systems. The company is enjoying access control and live event-based monitoring within a system that features simple user management, zero-touch maintenance, and effortless scalability.
Juan says the company is just beginning to realize the full spectrum of benefits gained from its transition to a cloud-managed system, but it's definitely worth it:
“I don't know how to quantify the Verkada upgrade. But I can compare it to having a Chevy, versus a Tesla for the same price. I'm paying for the future and potential of the technology, and getting way more for my money.”
Experience the benefits of Verkada’s cloud-managed solution firsthand - visit verkada.com/try.