BALCO Embraces Automation for Bolstering Security and Communication during COVID-19

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@ Vikas Sharma | Sr Journalist

Korba: Bharat Aluminium Company (BALCO), a global pioneer in the aluminium & power sector recently launched an automated and highly sophisticated Centralised Security Operations Centre (CSOC) to further strengthen the security of its people and operations. This technological enhancement of the security function is in line with BALCO’s relentless efforts towards strengthening workforce safety and asset integrity. The company is rapidly deploying state-of the-art technology across all functions and security automation is a firm step in this direction.

As one of the first manufacturing organizations in India to incorporate state-of-the-art technology in its communication methodology, BALCO believes in being an innovation driver. In the wake ofCOVID-19, smart technology innovations deployed at BALCO have been playing a major role in ensuring business continuity as well as ensuring that all protocols laid out for social distancing are being adhered to..

CEO & Director, Mr. Abhijit Pati said, “Safety and security of our people and assets is of paramount importance to us. BALCO has been one of the early adopters in India to explore the field of smart technologies in its security set-up. These investments and skills further bolster the culture of safety that we have meticulously fostered across the organization. These technologies are standing us in good stead in the wake of COVID-19. We are ensuring a future-ready organization that can sustain production even in the face of severe odds for a self-reliant India.”

To create an ecosystem of smart automation in its operations, BALCO has setup the best-of-the-breed Centralized Security Operations Centre (CSOC).. CSOC has several cutting-edge security solutions ranging from edge-based security analytics for incident detection and response to effective management of security resources on ground, besides enablement of intelligence collection. Deployment of CSOC enables BALCO’s security, traffic safety and supply chain security functions to leverage digital intelligence and data insights for better and agile decision making.

During the current COVID outbreak, this CSOC has doubled up as an Emergency Control & Command Center for monitoring the plant and township for employees to report any cases or seek help. It has been instrumental in creating an effective communication system during COVID-19 relief work. From keeping track of manpower movement inside the plant premises to being able to trace movement of people coming from other districts/states, and collaborating with district administration for ensuring collective wellbeing, CSOC has been instrumental in strengthening the collaboration between BALCO and the local administration.

Additionally, CSOC has also enabled the implementation of ‘man-less’ perimeter wall, putting an end to internal ‘static security’ posts and redefining the role of security patrols towards ensuring seamless coordination among various stakeholders during exigencies.
To further strengthen safety of its women professionals and families, BALCO has developed an inhouse “Nirbhaya” app, which uses GPS to send an alarm by way of an SMS denoting the user’s location in case of events like accidents, emergencies or other unsafe conditions.
From installing GPS-enabled monitoring system in coal carrying vehicles to school buses ferrying the township kids back and forth from school, and introducing Artificial Intelligence in operations, the company is actively exploring the field of smart technologies to enhance performance and boost production.
Amid the pandemic, the company is continuing its preventive measures for the local populace in collaboration with the district administration, health workers, employees and families, business associates and NGO partners towards ensuring grassroots preparedness Several employees have also volunteered to take care of food and medicine requirements of underprivileged families who have been adversely impacted due to the pandemic. .

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