We’ve all heard the messages about social distancing. COVID-19 transmission is a numbers game. Every opportunity to reduce contact between people and physical objects in the workplace is an important step in reducing the risk of transmission. This is where guided access control can help.

While many businesses have pivoted to work from home arrangements, these are not sustainable for the longterm and leaders point to the importance of finding a balance between work from home and in the office.

It is likely the virus will remain with us in some capacity into the foreseeable future. However, as life and businesses return to ‘normal’, there will undoubtedly be a lasting impact and shift in the way we approach the workplace.

The changing access control landscape

For many years now, the access control industry has sought to improve human experiences within buildings and strengthen security controls for businesses. 

Access control systems which had been developing in the background for a long time have been thrust to the forefront as we rush to tackle the threat of COVID-19.

Systems and controls that were once a ‘luxury’ reserved for the largest organizations are now a daily necessity for everyone.

The importance of access control in a COVID world

Access control is an important element of implementing physical security controls. While physical barriers are important to managing access in the workplace, they’re no use if those who actually need to get through can not.

Effective access control systems enable the smooth flow of people in and out of a building. While also barring entry to those who should not be there.

However, more importantly, in the current climate, access control systems must enable a contactless flow of people in and out of the workplace. Although these systems can be kept simple for companies only requiring access control for staff. The equation is exponentially more difficult when you begin to factor requirements for visitors and contractors into the mix.

With effective integration between access controls and visitor and contractor management systems, the same ease of access provided to staff can be extended to visitors and contractors.

The introduction of journey mapping for guided access control

Contactless entry and exit is only the beginning of the journey. Many companies now operate in far more complex environments. These evolutions pose new challenges to managing the flow of people through buildings. Particularly if you are to ensure they remain contactless throughout their time on-site.

With integrated systems, you can now bring access control and visitor management together. Allowing you to map user journeys and provide a path throughout their on-site experience.

 A journey mapped, guided access experience

Today, the user journey starts well before visitors ever arrive on-site. A truly effective, integrated, guided access control system begins with the initial invite.

Pre-arrival information

Before arriving, the invite provides all the information the visitor will need to know for their time on-site. From who they’re seeing and when, to instructions for their time on site.

Induction and screening

In the past, on-site check-in could be very time-consuming. Completing site inductions, ensuring permits are in order and copies made for your records. Now in addition, businesses need to screen for COVID-19 to ensure their site and staff are protected.

With Sine, induction and screening workflows can be digitised and shared with visitors and contractors before they arrive on-site. This is a great way to ensure compliance with procedures and legislation for your business as those who have not completed necessary inductions will be barred from entering.

Plus, digitised inductions are a great way to ensure you have an effective audit trail should you ever need to investigate further.

Arrival and check-in

There are many ways to check in to a site. Whether it’s through an iPad, scanning a contactless Fast Track QR code or automatically checking in with the Sine Pro app. Check-ins are handled in the most effective manner for your operations.

Host approval and credential provisioning

After checking in, visitors can be approved for entry by their host and access credentials provisioned. Through integrations with a range of access control providers, visitors can have their permissions journey mapped to allow them through turnstiles, lifts and doors to make it to their host’s location.

Check-out and credential expiry

After their visit, users can check-out of the site. Automatic credential expiry can be triggered either on check-out or after a designated period of time. This ensures your premises remain secure.

Transform your office into a smart building of the future

The benefits of guided access control, journey mapping and visitor management systems have proven to be invaluable in both surviving and reopening after the pandemic.

Begin your transformation today and book a demo with our team to discuss how these solutions could work for you.