8 Ways Organizations Benefit from Electronic Visitor Management
Electronic Visitor Management Systems are quickly replacing hand-written, sign-in systems in the lobbies of businesses, hospitals, campuses and law enforcement agencies across the U.S. In an effort to add a layer of safety at the organization’s initial point of entry, create more detailed and uniform visitor records in seconds, curb criminal activity and keep employees safe, more and more facilities have turned to visitor management systems to boost security and keep track of who is in the building at any given time.
Visitor management systems like iVisitor from Veristream are able to collect and save critical data in seconds, and keep accurate records of employees and visitors who enter their premises every day – the benefits begin to add up right away.
The beauty of an electronic Visitor Management System, installed as the first-level of security when employers and facilities managers need to monitor people coming and going in their workplaces, provides a quick and definitive record of everyone who needs or wants access to their office building.
Not long ago, people would simply sign a visitor logbook attached to a clipboard at the receptionist’s desk, which meant collecting accurate information was dependent on the person signing in. Often, contractors and vendors would not sign the logbook, leaving them with unlimited access to the building and staff who may or may not have known who they were or why they were there.
Businesses and institutions are becoming more security conscious – due in part to the seemingly relentless news reports of crimes and violent behavior occurring in loosely-monitored or large, wide open facilities – and are battening down their hatches. They’re also looking to update and streamline their front desk check-in services to protocols that are more accurate and speedy.
Among the benefits of visitor access management are:
- Instant and reliable data storage:
Visitor Management Systems like Veristream’s iVisitor and iSiteAccess record and store data on every individual who enters the premises by instantly scanning a driver’s license or business card, then prints up a visitor’s pass that defines who they are and what area of the building they can access, preventing people from wandering into areas that are off-limits such as administrative offices or supply closets. If, for any reason, the need arises to know who was in the building on a particular date at a particular time, the facility has an accurate record of every visitor and employee; no more human errors or accountability issues.
- Good impressions with fast, easy and intuitive Visitor Management Systems:
Visitor Management Systems streamlined check-in structure is fast and easy, eliminating the line of people waiting to sign in. Just a quick scan of the visitor’s ID and they’re signed in along with all of their relevant information. The visitor’s ID can be linked to national watch list databases for a more thorough record of their history, and the business owner can also maintain names, data and photos of people who are not approved to enter the premises.
Web-based visitor management software like iVisitor also makes a great impression on clients and visitors. The online portal is intuitive, easy to use, and accessible from any mobile device. Its ease of use cannot be over-valued. If your process is time consuming, exasperating or unreliable, people will become frustrated and could decide to find another provider for the services they came to your business for.
- Faster, smoother check-in with pre-registration:
Visitors and vendors can pre-register, and their information can be added to the company or institution’s database in advance. Not only does pre-registration expedite the check-in process, it alerts staff to the date and time of the scheduled visit so they can be prepared for the visitor’s arrival. This is especially convenient when the visitor is a contractor or vendor who may need special access to a remote area of the building or some extra guidance or attention to accomplish the goals of their visit.
- Permanent and easily retrievable data:
Since each visitor’s information is immediately stored in a computer database, it can be retrieved, searched, sorted, or analyzed later if needed. A Visitor Management System can generate activity reports that provide details regarding how many visits they’ve had in any particular time frame, who they were there to see, and more. Such data can prove crucial in the case of an unexpected incident – if a security investigation comes up, or to audit vendor and contractor invoices. In the case of an emergency or building evacuation, these reports tell office personnel which visitors were in the building at the time of the emergency.
- Instant recognition:
After the first check-in, returning visitors are instantly recognized by the Visitor Management System.
- Peace of mind:
In addition to the added layer of security, business owners and facilities managers have the peace of mind that goes with knowing that all client records are complete, accurate, and permanently stored in the visitor management database.
- Quick internal communication:
Visitor Management System software can be configured to send text messages to employees to let them know when a visitor has arrived.
- Comprehensive analytics reports on visitor activity:
Businesses and institutions can generate analytics reports that track valuable information on visitors of the facility.
A Visitor Management System is an important part of an organization’s overall security strategy, improving lobby security and protecting the confidentiality of visitors, whereas paper logs diminish the organization’s professional image. The paper log presents a poor image to visitors and exhibits lax security in three ways:
- Visitor sign-in names are sometimes found to be illegible or false.
- In an emergency such as a fire, it could be impossible to quickly determine who’s still in the building because names written on paper logs (if they survive) can be difficult to read, and check-out times are rarely required or enforced.
- Information on individuals who have visited an organization – information that should be confidential – is readily available for any other visitors to view openly, when this information should be confidential.
The benefits of a Visitor Management System cannot be underestimated. The instant and reliable data storage, the guarantee of good impressions, the improved pace that comes with pre-registration, the permanent and easily retrievable data storage, instant recognition, peace of mind, quick internal communication and comprehensive analytics reports all work together to create a more efficient, effective – and secure – organization.