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Connecting Access Control & Visitor Management

June 27, 2022

Every entrance to your workplace is a potential security vulnerability. An aggressive shutdown of physical access points reduces exposure and brings lobby traffic to a crawl – creating a host of other issues. A secure and efficient workplace requires a system to balance access and security needs.  

Access control systems offer a solution to automate secure entries without impeding the flow of employees, visitors, and contractors into your building.   

Implementing access control into your visitor management system (VMS) protects your workplace and workers. All while ensuring a positive, streamlined visitor experience. 

How Facilities Connect Access Control and Visitor Management

Access control is a physical security tactic for managing workplace access. The mass adoption of digital visitor management has made it easy to integrate access control into your VMS.   

Secure entrances used to rely on lock-and-key solutions, which were cumbersome and severely limited accessibility. Or, entrances required direct monitoring by security personnel – a costly and wasteful use of person-hours.  

Today, access control integrations allow visitor management systems to take over the visitor induction flow. Visitors can conduct self-sign-ins, verify IDs, print visitor badges, and validate visits. Smartphone QR codes and printed smart badges can be used at access points to open gates, turnstiles, or doors. Your workplace has complete control over which entrances visitors can access without relying on clunky manual oversight practices.

These integrations can be further combined with PIAM software (Physical Identity and Access Management) to enable policy-based access compliance and to automate the identity and access needs of visitors, contractors, and other temporary guests.  

Consider contractor induction as an example of how these two features work together to simplify secure workplace access: 

You hire a contractor to accomplish a specific task in your facility. Before they arrive, you send them a pre-registration link to their smartphone. Inducting contractors often requires a longer check-in process with multiple agreements, e-signatures, and verifications. If the contractor has to perform this lengthy registration onsite, it means more lobby traffic and less time spent on projects. Pre-registration speeds up visitor sign-ins, allowing them to scan a QR code from their phone on arrival.  

Scanning their visitor registration QR code can allow entries and print off visitor badges. The contractor can now enter all necessary entry points with ease. You have control over which access points are allowed as well as how long the visitor badge remains active.  

If the project is expected to last one week, you can set the badge to expire after seven days. That way, the contractor doesn't have to repeat the registration process ad nauseum. You can even control hours of access to allow off-hours projects. 

How to Manage Contractor Compliance in Enterprise Facilities

5 Reasons to Integrate Access Control in Your Visitor Management Solution

Integrating access control and visitor management software means you don't have to choose between streamlining visitor flow and maximizing security. Take control over your visitors and all entries to your building. Here are the top five reasons to integrate access control and visitor management. 

1. Improves Workplace Security and Physical Security

Improving physical security and building safety is a priority in the workplace. A reliable visitor access control system protects your workplace from bad actors and liability issues. Any sensitive information or assets you store physically in your office space can be protected through smart badges, allowing only authorized personnel to enter the space.  

Use point-of-entry screening to control who can enter your building and which areas they can access. You always know who is in your building with a real-time monitoring dashboard.

2. Creates a Better Experience for Visitors and Employees

Self-guided sign-in kiosks give visitors more autonomy with their visit. This front desk software replaces the need for staff to greet visitors and guide them through the check-in process. That means employees can spend their time on other important tasks, and visitors waste less time waiting. 

3. Decreases Operational Costs

Modern access control solutions are a cost-effective way to maintain the physical security of a location. One dashboard can monitor multiple locations, so you don't need a security guard at every entrance. Instead, door access integrations can automatically admit or deny visitors based on their credentials.  

Access permissions are monitored and controlled remotely through your facility's security software, and the complete, automated visitor log is easy to access, helping optimize your day-to-day operations. 

4. Provides Temporary Access to Different Types of Visitors

Your business may have a wide range of visitors who come by for a wide range of reasons. For instance, you might have a client come for a meeting, a contractor to work on a project, and a courier dropping off a delivery, all at once. Each needs quick, user-friendly access, but you'll want to allow or restrict their access to completely different locations.  

A visitor management system can separate visitors by type, allowing easy and secure access through a single sign-in kiosk. Your predetermined visit types can automatically determine their points of access and communication procedure.  

When a client signs in for an important meeting, you can have a notification sent immediately to their host. The host can come to meet the client and take them wherever they need to go.  

The contractor can fill out any necessary liability forms or NDAs, and give proof of ID and certifications. Then they receive a QR code to access only the necessary areas to complete their work.  

The courier can mark off that they arrived, and with digital mailroom solutions, they can scan pickups and deliveries for a seamless process.  

Onsite badge printing also helps to visually identify visitors by type. Your visitor management kiosk can print color-coded badges so security teams can identify the purpose of each visit and what areas they can access. 

5. Helps You Meet Compliance Objectives

A good access control platform helps your business meet compliance requirements, such as General Data Protection Regulation requirements, throughout the year. If your business needs to conduct a visitor audit at any time, you can immediately recall clear and complete visitor logs through your VMS platform.  

Your access control platform uses custom settings to match your workplace's compliance needs. Everything from automated records, health questionnaires, watchlist screening, and encrypted data is available. Your VMS provides the ability and documentation you need to achieve compliance.

Protect Your Workplace with an Advanced Visitor Management Solution

Onboard a high-tech, customizable physical security system offers a strong solution to access control that is both simple and secure. iLobby software easily integrates with most office systems, so you can start authorizing, monitoring, and restricting access immediately.   

Schedule a demo and discover how iLobby simplifies complex processes in your workplace.

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Jeff Gladwish

Jeff Gladwish is the Chief Revenue Officer at iLobby where he spearheads the go-to-market strategy, driving the growth and adoption of our Facility and Visitor Management solutions. In 2023, Jeff was named one of Influitive’s Fearless 50 Customer-Led Marketing Leaders, an award that recognizes executives pushing the boundaries of customer marketing, advocacy, community, and loyalty.

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