In this article, we will discover how the tight labor market and the post-pandemic workplace have given rise to the opportunity to automate as many workflow processes as possible with visitor management system. The front lobby reception area is usually managed by a receptionist, security guard, or sometimes both. Both of these professions have been impacted by the tight labour market. Before the pandemic, Visitor Management Systems were becoming much more recognized in organizations for various reasons.
For instance, some organizations were already adopting an unattended desk, meaning there would be no one at the front desk but rather a phone directory. If they did have a receptionist, they would often be busy answering phones and not adequately have to address the visitors promptly. In this case, a Visitor Management System was a viable option
What is a Visitor Management System?
It automates the process a visitor registration at the front desk. In the past, you must like we’ve had this experience with the receptionist or security guard taking your name and phone number or filling out a logbook at the front lobby.
How does a Visitor Management System work?
As visitors, employees and Contractors enter a facility and interact by entering their name or QR code. Employees can swipe their NFC batch with the MyLobby Kiosk. In addition, you can ask them a series of questions such as:
- Who are you visiting?
- Tell us about yourself.
- How long are you visiting?
During the pandemic, we could accommodate the CDC screening questions, such as:
- Do you have any Covid like symptoms?
- Have you been in contact with anyone exposed to Covid?
If the individual is not compliant with the facilities questionnaire, it will deny them access. An email and SMS message is sent to the compliance team to ensure that the individual does not enter the building.
For successful entries of a visitor that has completed the process, it will notify their host to let them know that they have arrived. As seen in the photograph below, optional visitor badges are printed once the visitor completes the process.
MyLobby also offers the opportunity to sign in using your mobile device. Users will scan a QR code that will direct them to the sign-in process, similar to what they’ve experienced on the tablet. If a badge is required, at the end of the questionnaire, it will produce a QR code or a PIN, which then gets paired with the tablet and makes the visitor badge.
In short, it is a system that will automate almost any screening process as it’s fully customizable. It’s also built on a restful API to integrate with other applications, such as access control systems.
MyLobby offer with Access Control Integration
In times of crisis, such as the pandemic or wars, they often lead to great innovation. During the height of the pandemic. Our corporate and healthcare clients were refusing to get their staff to screen every individual before they came into the building. One person would ask for the CDC screening questionnaire another person do the temperature screening. Manually capturing each entry into a logbook; this process was time-consuming and expensive.
MyLobby solution with hardware and software offered the ability to take a temperature and do the self-serve questionnaire. In addition, it could tie in with its access control System. This functionality ensures absolute compliance as the doors would not open if they could not take their temperature and answer the Covid screening questions.
As the restrictions lifted along with the mandated questionnaires, operation professionals saw an opportunity to see the visitor management system morph into an employee management system to have a new role of the following:
- Digital punch Clock for Employees
- Contractor Sign-in Validating Billing
- Security logs of visitors, contractors, and employees
Access control with MyLobby Visitor Management is the New Era
The read-only fobs we are used to seeing have a limited function for allowing employees into the building and thus rely on receptionists or security guards to provide access to visitors and contractors. But a Smart tablet with access control integration offers a new opportunity to make the process seamless to give access to visitors and contractors with the appropriate restrictions.
We’re seeing a trend in hotels having no reception area. Instead, an access card is distributed by a kiosk access card, or a temporary pin pad access code is sent to you via SMS just before your arrival and expires at the end of your stay.
MyLobby is one of the few Visitor Management Solutions that have access control built into some of our tablet offerings. It’s equipped with a Wigand cable that sends an electronic pulse when the individual at the door meets the criteria of granted access. Most of us are familiar with having an employee badge. Swiping our badge sends that same electric pulse through the access door reader to unlock the door. Our tablet system works the same.
After the pandemic tight labour market has become the focal point.
There’s still debate about whether or not this pandemic is really over as of the fall of 2022. However, now facilities are dealing with a new crisis that centers around finding human resources. Both security guards and receptionists are positions challenged with a high turnover. This impact on organizations manifests itself in several ways:
- Interruptions in customer service
- Compromise security situations
- Business continuity challenges
- Noncompliance fines
- Higher cost in operations
Constant personnel turnover can be pretty frustrating for many businesses, but we’ve witnessed this before in different industries, from fast food restaurants implementing automated kiosks to placing your order. In addition, airports have implemented kiosks to self-check in and print your check bag labels. Most recently received, the airport leverages kiosks to automate the screening process to assist customer agents.
Suppose you think your facility will be a guinea pig for new automated technology. In that case, that’s far from the truth, as mentioned above with the adaptation from airports and hotels, and of course, we cannot forget the self-checkout aisles in the grocery stores. The only different thing is the workflow. Customizing workflows is the easy part. We understand every customer might have slightly different requirements for visitors or contractors entering your building. This is why MyLobby was built with the ability to customize those workflows according to your needs.
Although there are considerable differences that we can offer with an interactive tablet instead of just a door reader that relies on Near Field Communication (NFC).
Other options that we have available for access control are:
- Facial recognition
- Fingerprint biometrics
- QR code
- Pin code
- Two-way authentication
I think it’s fair to say we all have experienced these questionnaires. Many organizations initially did this with paper and pen, which was very time-consuming and costly as they used security guards and registered nurses to take the temperature. Fortunately, MyLobby was able to accommodate integrating temperature screening along with the questionnaire process and automated the whole Covid screening process for many organizations.
In a time of crisis like the pandemic, questionnaires are essential. Also, if you have a secure facility, each visitor would need to be screened along with a background check which visitor management can integrate with other third-party screening systems, which we will get into later.
Can the Lobby Visitor Management System do what a receptionist or security guard can do?
The answer is a resounding YES. It’s indisputably a lot more efficient. Digital workflows are built around logic and will execute a complete workflow from beginning to end faster than any human can. Keep in mind electricity and connectivity network are essential. It’s always best to have contingencies such as a backup system for your network and power to avoid interruptions.
What about the coolness factor?
Firstly, The return is “looking smart” or “cool” to realize dividends when technology and automated work processes work faster and more efficiently than any human can. Secondly, prospects or partners look at you differently when they identify you are using the latest TECH. Conversely, you might have a cool-looking modern lobby.
However, suppose you don’t have the latest gizmos like a cool-looking visitor management system. In that case, you still have a paper logbook; well you might lose a few points on the WOW-FACTOR Or, on your counter, these touchpoints are making a tangible impact on the first impression of your organization. So let me ask, what’s it worth for your organization to make an excellent first impression
In summary, the Covid crisis has provided innovations to automate and digitize as many processes as possible. The great resignation or simply, the title labour has presented other challenges that were someone present before the Covid crisis, which is only been exasperated. Furthermore, inflation has increased operational cost significantly. New technology and automation have always been an opportunity to decrease cost significantly. MyLobby Visitor Management can address all of these challenges and provide even greater efficiencies to your organization.