What is the right key cabinet for your business and do you really need one?
Most people are content to stick all their keys on the same ring and leave them on the kitchen benchtop, but if your business involves handling a large number of keys (especially keys allowing access to sensitive or expensive areas) you’ll want a more robust way of protecting them from thieves and other troublemakers.
Key cabinets are a great solution to the problem of securing multiple keys, and can commonly be found in rental agencies, car dealerships and hotels around the world — these simple, safe-like cabinets provide extensive key storage space and durable security in a surprisingly compact package.
However, not every key cabinet is perfect for your business, and you should make sure that the key cabinet you choose is suitable for the needs of your business and its employees. Be sure you look through a number of key cabinets to give yourself options, and asking yourself the following two questions can help you choose the right one.
How Large Should My Key Cabinet Be?
Naturally, you will want your key cabinet to be able to hold all the sensitive keys your company uses, so you should try to match the capacity of your key cabinet to the number of keys that need securing as closely as possible. Purchasing an overly large key cabinet for a few keys isn’t just a waste of money—it can also disrupt proper key organisation and can make keeping an accurate count of how many keys are in the cabinet more challenging.
You should also bear in mind that a larger key cabinet is much heavier than smaller options, especially when considering the steel and other durable materials these cabinets are made from. Key cabinets need to be securely mounted to a wall to provide effective security, otherwise an opportunistic thief can simply pick up the cabinet and steal all your keys at once.
A relatively fragile plasterboard wall, like the interior walls found in many pre-fabricated office spaces, may not be able to hold up a fully laden 200-key cabinet. As such, it’s important to mark out a suitable space for your new cabinet in advance to determine what cabinets your wall can support.
Should I Choose a Key or Combination Lock?
Modern, electronic combination locks may be all the rage in the world of safes, but there is still a lot to be said for a traditional key-and-keyhole lock on your new key cabinet.
Using a traditional keyed lock necessarily limits the amount of people who can access the cabinet—based on the number of keys you have made for it—and prevents any particularly lucky thieves from stealing or guessing the combination to your cabinet. Keyed locks also cost much less to make than electronic combination locks, so you can expect to find them on cheaper cabinet models.
On the other hand, electronic combination locks are often worth the extra price tag for the additional security they provide against picking. Lacking any physical keys also sidesteps the headaches of losing your cabinet keys, which can often mean having your cabinet expensively opened and re-locked by a professional locksmith or safe engineer.
The greatest advantage of an electronic combination lock, however, is that it allows you to easily and frequently change the passcode that grants access to the cabinet—many key cabinet operating businesses change their passcodes on a daily or weekly basis, providing an excellent extra layer of protection, particularly against disgruntled ex-employees.
If you are having trouble deciding which type of lock is best for your business, one of the easiest ways to choose is by totting up how many employees will need access to the cabinet. If large numbers of employees need access to business keys, such as at a large hotel complex, a combination lock is much easier to operate with no risk of employees losing keys.
On the other hand, if only you or a select number of employees are permitted access to the cabinet, such as at a luxury car dealership, a keyed cabinet can be entirely fit for use.
Use the information in this blog to determine which key cabinet is right for your business. However, if you have any more questions or concerns about key cabinets, get in touch with an experienced safe company.