In today’s environment, it is more important than ever to know who is accessing your properties and when. A post-COVID world increases the need for the right visitor management solutions for the office, due to specific challenges surrounding contact tracing and reducing risk for close contact in public spaces. Additionally, flexible schedules mean that employees are more likely to be in the office at unpredictable times — prompting a push towards remote management, building automation, and more.
Today, there are more solutions in the commercial real estate (CRE) market than ever to effectively manage a concise record of who is visiting your buildings, why they are visiting, and where they are spending their time. Together, we can evaluate these solutions to determine the best fit for you and your tenants.
What Is a Visitor Management System?
Aptly put, visitor management is any process that an organization uses to keep track of who comes to their building. Visitor management systems can be as simple or as sophisticated as the user desires, from a pen and paper record to an advanced technology stack that integrates with the entire building. As long as there is a way for visitors to sign in when they arrive and sign out when they leave, it’s enough for most safety protocols — that is, until now.
With the rise of tenant experience technologies has also come more advanced ways to manage and track building occupants. More complex visitor management systems include some level of automation, such as requiring that visitors scan themselves in using smart badges — thus recording their identity and time of entry. In some cases, these are used not just at the entrance, but also in sensitive or restricted areas.
According to The Receptionist, modern visitor management systems — which include open source visitor sign-in system variations — can achieve all of the following to increase office productivity and safety:
- Maintain a cloud-based visitor log
- Take photos of your visitors to help you identify them
- Print visitor ID badges, customized with your company’s logo
- Capture signatures for NDAs and other legal agreements
- Accept deliveries from UPS, FedEx, and other courier services
- Send SMS, email, and Slack notifications when visitors arrive
- Allow two-way communication between employees and visitors
- Accept food deliveries and document drop-off
- Provide instructions for visitors
- Enable remote-controlled access for visitors when needed
The Modern Visitor Management Process
We’ve come a long way from pen and paper. Modern updates to visitor management processes also contribute to the increasing trend of smart buildings for commercial real estate. In general, smart buildings leverage technology to quickly disseminate information between building systems in order to optimize performance and create easy, seamless experiences for building occupants. These tech-enabled meccas are desirable for tenants and visitors due to their modern and unique amenities, as well as their custom solutions for any need.
With so many ways to achieve results, smart building features vary — there is truly no one-size-fits-all solution for how property teams can take advantage of the various smart building services to create efficiencies in the workplace and enhance their tenant experience. At the end of the day, it’s all about being frictionless: imagine being able to enter a building without touching a single surface, simply approaching the visitor kiosk, and being automatically signed in and notified of where you need to go and who you need to meet. You don’t need to dig through your pockets for an identification badge or papers, because it’s already digitally logged and recorded ahead of time — and all of this is accomplished through an easy-to-use app or piece of software accessible through your smartphone.
This is the modern experience tenants are looking for, and what CRE leaders are striving for.
Determining the Best Visitor Management Solutions
No one system is going to be the ideal solution for every business. This is why we partner with a wide array of best-in-class technology partners and developers, each of whom can be found and implemented through our HqOS™ operating system:
Soloinsight allows you to manage visitor access through Windows, iPad, and Android with their CloudGate solution. CloudGate offers high end features that include NDAs and waivers, facial recognition, company branding, and a multilingual interface. The workflow can be customized to capture exactly the data that you want and need. Their system also supports functions like bolo watchlists to keep flagged persons out, guest wifi, and a visitor app for quick, contactless check-ins.
Angus Systems is a robust example of online property management software. They offer mobile and cloud-based work order and operations management solutions for commercial real estate teams. They highlight their system’s ability to mitigate risks with their access card management system. Their system helps you see who is in the building and their reason for visiting at a glance. It can also be used by tenants and their guests to schedule visits such as service requests.
Building Engine’s Visitor Access software allows you to check visitors in quickly and conveniently while capturing the details that you value most. The system can pre-register visitors, check them in, and log detailed information instantly for a safe and contactless office experience. The speed of this system reduces wait times, which means less chance of congested waiting rooms and lobbies.
Envoy Visitor Management System offers great customization and features at a range of price points. The software’s UI is simple to use and easy to customize. Their features — which include QR code based check-in, image capturing, and many others — can facilitate touchless experiences, enhance communications, and securely store everything you need from visitors to remain in compliance with building regulations.
Access a Free Visitor Management App
At HqO, we offer an end-to-end operating system that aggregates the solutions you need for a better tenant experience. Access our growing ecosystem of office technology partners in HqOS™ — which includes multiple visitor management softwares — to create end-to-end, seamless experiences for tenants throughout your building. To learn more about where you can get a free visitor sign-in app for iPad, iPhones, and other devices, as well as comparative visitor management system prices, you can sign up for a free demo today. We’d be happy to show you the possibilities.