Say Cheese! 6 Tips to Maintain a Secure Building with Visitor Access

Today’s Commercial Real Estate property managers face a juggling act when it comes to building security. On one hand, it’s never been more important to maintain the protection of your building, especially if you are located in a major downtown area. You want to keep your tenants, employees and guests safe by ensuring only the right tenant occupants, property management staff, vendors and visitors can access the property.

On the other hand, you don’t want to add unnecessary inconvenience that slows visitor access. Time is billable and appointments are tightly scheduled in law firms and medical offices for example. When their visitors arrive late because the security line is long, these tenants will be quick to complain. So your tenants expect that their visitors will arrive at their appointments as quickly as possible and on time.

How can you balance security and convenience?

A key element of visitor security is capturing the right information about each visitor before and at the start of their visit – who they are, their company, who and why they are visiting, when they will arrive, and similar information. A key part of this information set is the ability to capture a photo of the visitor as well. Here are some tips to help you to optimize visitor security:*

1. Encourage advance registration – Encourage tenants to register visitors in advance so guards can focus on security, not on data entry that slows down the process for visitors.
2. Provide an exceptional visitor experience – Your lobby personnel may be the first interaction that visitors have on behalf of your tenants. You want to ensure that they provide the experience that your tenants expect.
3. Use “watch lists” – Prevent unwanted people from entering the premises by having tenants maintain visitor “watch lists” including people such as disgruntled ex-employees. Give tenants the tools to do this from anywhere on their mobile devices and on the web at their desks.
4. Enable tenants to serve themselves – Make it easy for tenants to register their visitors in advance by providing them with the web and mobile tools that enable them to easily register one-time and recurring visitors – whether individually or in groups.
5. Capture visitor photos – Capture visitor photos for badges to prevent badge-sharing, and so that staff and tenants can match the badge to the actual person.
6. Use current photos – Capture a current photo so you know exactly what each visitor looks like on the day of the visit. This makes it much easier to compare the photo against, for example, a video of a hallway and may shorten the time required to locate the visitor in the video.

Announcing the NEW Image Capture feature for Visitor Access

I am pleased to publicly announce an important new feature to the Building Engines Access Control module: visitor image capture. Now, whenever someone visits your building, your security desk staff can easily capture the visitor’s photo which will then appear as part of their badge. You have the choice of either requiring photos for all visitors or not capturing photos. If photos are required, the security staff will take a fresh photo each time the person visits so you always know their exact appearance at the time of their visit. If needed, the security staff can override the image requirement by adding a note so you will know why the image was not captured.

This seemingly small change may have a big impact in your building, increasing security and preventing visitors from being where they shouldn’t be.

Powerful Visitor Access Features

Visitor image capture joins other important Visitor Access features that will help you to maintain a secure facility, speed access through your guard desk, and reduce guard training:

Guard Desk Features
• Faster check-in – Validate visitors and streamline the check-in process to decrease visitor wait times.
• Badge printing – Print badges with barcodes and photos, if required.
• COI checking – View vendor COI status and manage liability upon entry.
• Fast and easy to use – Intuitive interface enables guards to quickly select visitors to check in, with minimal data entry – and with minimal training.

Tenant Features
• Tenant-maintained watch lists – Screen unwanted visitors.
• Anywhere, anytime tenant access – Enable tenants to add and manage visitors and watch lists from the Web and mobile devices.
• Quick submit form – Tenants and guards can quickly add visitors or large groups with the Quick Submit form.
• Frequent visitors – Tenants can quickly manage recurring visitor schedules, frequent visitor lists, and more.

All of these visitor access tools will help you to maintain the right balance between security and convenience, like other high-performing properties.

Current Building Engines customers are invited to engage their client success manager for more information about this feature. To learn about becoming a Building Engines customer, and protecting the safety and security of your assets, request a demo today.

* Security is serious business. As always, we recommend that you work closely with your organization’s security and risk management and security teams to devise the strategies that are right for your particular situation.