Sweden’s least populated municipality enters the digital era

Digital locking simplifies the access management of municipal properties while also boosting cost-efficiency and sustainability.

Bjurholm Municipality (Bjurholms kommun) is located in Västerbotten County in northern Sweden. The least populated of all Swedish municipalities, Bjurholm’s population is just 2,391. The municipality believes in supporting the population’s well-being through sustainability, which includes high energy efficiency and low climate impact goals.

Managing the access to multiple municipal premises used to be a challenge

Before becoming an iLOQ customer, the Bjurholm Municipality had several locking systems in use, provided by different suppliers. This is not unusual, but it becomes problematic when keys are lost or need to be assigned from one user to another.

“We didn’t have a functioning system. There were a lot of keys in circulation and no control,” explains property manager Hans Edlund from the Bjurholm Municipality. “We also had a lot of unsecure keys – the kind that are not protected against illicit copying,” he adds.

Whether large or small, all municipalities benefit from efficiency. Ensuring smooth access to all properties requires a clear system, ideally showing to whom each key has been assigned and where it is physically. This way keys do not end up in the wrong hands.

The situation in Bjurholm was far from ideal: lists of keys were incorrect or incomplete and municipal employees frequently spent hours looking for keys.

Access rights can now be self-managed

In 2019, the Bjurholm Municipality decided to switch to digital access management with the help of iLOQ. A few properties have been equipped with the iLOQ S50 system, while most are operated with the newer iLOQ S5 solution. Both are intelligent, battery-free solutions.

“The reason we chose iLOQ is that their solutions seemed reliable and thorough. They have been on the market for a long time and came with good references,” Hans explains.

With 60 km to the nearest locksmith, it was important for the Bjurholm Municipality to be able to perform administrative tasks, such as changing, adding and moving locks, on their own. With iLOQ’s intelligent platform and customer interface, they can now disable lost keys and reassign new ones with just a few clicks. In Bjurholm, many municipal employees handle several tasks. They used to need to carry a bunch of keys around, but now, with iLOQ, each person only needs one key, regardless of the number of places they need to access.

Simplicity, security and cost-efficiency

Installing iLOQ’s digital locking solution has simplified access management as well as the everyday tasks of the municipal employees. Now they have good control of all the keys, and they are able to handle all administrative tasks themselves.