How to implement an effective visitor management system

April 2015 Access Control & Identity Management

Gone are the days when the few questions that a home insurance consultant had on his checklist for you were predominantly about your alarm system and whether or not you had some sort of fencing around your property.

Fast forward to 2015. An average home insurance quote application takes about 40 minutes and is predominantly about whether your property is within a gated security area and the ins and outs of their access control management.

Powell Tronics believe that access control and visitor management has moved up the list of top priorities for residential estates and business parks, to a stage where it is almost on par with standard security features such as perimeter walls, electric fencing and CCTV. It is now rare to be able to drive into an estate without being stopped by some form of barrier and a neatly dressed guard with a clipboard.

While the manual visitor entry books have served their purpose over the years, they have also inherently highlighted the importance of capturing accurate visitor information. An increase in private crime, allied to thousands of Rands being spent replacing countless barriers lost to the reckless driving antics of M Mouse , listing ‘Bus.’ or ‘PVT’ as the reason for their visit, is considered to be the major driver for radical change in many residential communities and commercial business centres.

This has prompted a rapid migration to electronic access control solutions that are fully integrated to seamlessly handle visitors and contractors. However, an access control solution is only as good as the data on which it relies to make decisions regarding who to let in and who to keep out. Sound installations by a certified installer and properly maintained information that is stored in system databases are key factors in determining whether an access control solution will be an asset to the estate or a hindrance to its tenants.

Efficient integrated systems

Powell Tronics’ years of involvement with numerous estates and business centres nationwide has identified valuable best practice methodologies that are implemented with the goal of achieving an efficient access control and visitor management solution. Policies such as automatically limiting contractor and visitor access to specific areas and time zones is far more effective and less administrative than allowing them full access for an unlimited time period and can be amended as the need arises.

The idea is to use technologies that capture vehicle licence discs and driver’s licences and are fully integrated with the access control systems, like Impronet and Powell Tronics’ PT-Guest service solution. This ensures that accurate visitor and contractor information is easily captured within seconds, without causing negative effects on an already busy perimeter entrance or inconveniencing the visitor by asking them to exit their vehicles to be registered.

Focused visitor and contractor reports with details such as the visitor’s name, surname and contact number, respective vehicle make, colour and registration details, destination, and transaction details, will empower the estates security management to quickly and accurately identify any visitor or contractor that has been or currently is on site. Comprehensive tenant information on the access control system enables the security teams to efficiently liaise with tenants for visitor confirmation.

Regular servicing essential

Service level agreements with certified installers to administer and perform background procedures, such as regular backups and system maintenance, including systematic battery backups or database maintenance, or to ensure the access control system is running optimally are critical for effective long-term performance.

An alternative to the outright purchase of a visitor management is the rental option. This has a number of advantages for customers including the fact that the system does not appear on the customer’s balance sheet, CAPEX expenditure is not required and regular, scheduled proactive maintenance is tied into the rental agreement with the installer. In addition, as technology ages it can be replaced by newer, best practice technology as part of the rental renewal process.

It is advisable for customers to seek out the services of installers or system integrators who have documented experience in providing estate visitor management solutions. Similarly, installers should align themselves with suppliers who have a proven track record of designing and supplying solutions that can be integrated with other security and business systems.

By implementing a regulated and fully integrated access control and visitor management solution, both residential and commercial estates can assure their tenants that the utmost level of security is in place to safeguard their investment in their estate.

For more information contact Powell Tronics, 0861 787 2537, [email protected],


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