4 minutes read time
Most businesses globally are required to display a government-issued QR code which those entering their workplace need to scan. But asking your visitors to sign in to both WhosOnLocation and then a separate process for the government-issued QR code could be viewed as a cumbersome process and poor visitor experience.
Good news, using existing tools available in your WhosOnLocation visitor sign in process you can now combine your standard WhosOnLocation sign in experience with your government-issued QR code.
Governments globally are mandating the use of QR code posters to help with contact tracing. All visitors and employees are required to scan the government-issued QR code with their smartphones before entering a business. In the unfortunate event that a case of COVID-19 is reported, the government can use this data to trace the scope of the community and workplace outbreak and reach out to any close contacts to reduce the likelihood of further transmission.
By combining the government-issued QR code system with your WhosOnLocation subscription you are adding an additional tool to your risk management strategy. Allowing you to:
You can choose from three options to combine the two systems depending on the experience you want to offer your employees and guests.
When employees and guests arrive on-site they:
When employees and guests arrive on-site they:
Tip: As a back up we recommend having your government QR code poster displayed in your reception and at all entry points for those who can’t sign in using a smartphone.
If you don’t want to make changes to your kiosk sign in process or only use our QR code posters, we have a poster option available. When an employee or guest arrives on-site they will need to follow the steps on the poster:
To add your unique QR codes and branding to the poster we have created a design file you can edit.
What if I already use a visitor management system can’t I provide a report from this? Unfortunately, the new rules require organizations to use government-issued QR code. Remember, the government contact tracing systems are not visitor management systems. They do not ask visitors to select a host, they do not capture other information like vehicle parking details, or ask the visitor to sign waivers or NDA’s or any of the other common visitor management workflows.
Your visitor management system will give you detailed information of who came on-site and who they met with, it’s important to remember the government does not want to have to look through every organization’s visitor management reporting, which will differ from customer to customer.
Do any people presence systems integrate with the government-issued QR codes? Not with the government-mandated QR code systems, we are aware of.
Will WhosOnLocation be integrated with the government-issued QR code systems? No, the government-mandated QR codes are intended for government contact tracing only. This is to help officials easily track and contain an outbreak from a single system. However, you can use the government-issued QR code service alongside WhosOnLocation.
Please reach out to our friendly Support Team.
4 minutes read time
Webhooks can be an overwhelming concept, however, they can be an extremely powerful method of data transfer, allowing your online applications to communicate with each other in real time. This means webhooks will automatically send data as soon as a specific event happens, without the need to request or wait for it.
Webhooks have proven to be a very useful tool with dozens of applications, across several different industries. With web automation apps like Zapier, which support hundreds of apps, you can effectively implement webhooks into your applications to make the management of data easier and more efficient.
First of all, webhooks are simply more efficient. Webhooks are sometimes referred to as reverse API’s because data can be transferred in real-time without any lag, rather than polling API’s for the latest updates. An API is a good way to communicate between applications when you need to ask a question, but if you want to be notified when something has changed it becomes inefficient. A webhook-enabled API would be more methodical as it will automatically transfer data when there is new data to send, saving your system valuable resources.
For example, a feature on your sign-in and out application could include contacts, each of which has a name, email address, and phone number. As soon as someone new signs into your building, a new contact is added to your application. However, another application may want to use that data to either send a text message, look up their email address, or back up the contact data. Whatever it is, without a way to alert these applications when a new contact is added, you force them to constantly poll for new data which is inefficient and unsustainable.
When analyzing data, it is important to work with up-to-date information and data. The frequency of your API would limit this, as information isn’t updated in real time. Webhooks, however, give you the option to update the information instantly, while still being able to request your API’s for more information if needed.
It is worth noting that webhooks are used for sending information, whereas our API can be used to update or change information. For example, when someone signs in, a webhook will send information to another system to let it know that this specific event has happened. This system will then use our API to get more information about that event and update information as required.
You’re probably thinking that webhooks must be difficult to set up, but in actual fact, webhooks are incredibly easy to create, much easier than building an API.
To give you a better idea of when webhooks would be useful, here are some ideas:
With WhosOnLocation, any data associated with a sign-in event can be sent using a webhook. Some examples of what your third-party applications can do with the data include:
It is also possible to use webhooks to connect WhosOnLocation to the internet of things (IoT). An example of this could be when the first person signs into the office the lights, heating or even the coffee machine will automatically turn on. The possibilities are endless!
Webhooks can connect WhosOnLocation to Google Sheets through Zapier. Next time a visitor signs in, you will be able to keep track of and use the information they give you to update your spreadsheets. This could be anything from email addresses to the hours your employees worked.
If you are looking to grow your marketing mailing list when people sign in, MailChimp could be the integration you need. In order to do this, you will need to create a custom question at the Kiosk asking the visitor if they want to be added to the mailing list. The webhook will then automatically update MailChimp with the new email address, ready for a new email to be sent out without having to enter addresses in manually.
Webhooks are the only practical way to get up-to-the-second access to new data. Webhooks allow pre-requested information to be passed to other applications when the specific event occurs, in comparison to manually polling API’s for new information. This will add value to your systems because it will give you the ability to connect third-party applications through Zapier, saving time and increasing efficiency in your workplace.
4 minutes read time
A busy reception with employees, contractors, visitors, and deliveries passing through can quickly become chaotic – and a chaotic environment can quickly become unsafe. Whether you have a full team of front-of-house staff or a small, unmanned reception area, here are some simple ways to make your reception a calm, welcoming and safe environment.
As the world of business becomes more international, the need to communicate clearly is more important than ever. Whether your facility is a manufacturing plant, a construction site or a small office, the chances are you’ll welcome employees, contractors or visitors from overseas at one stage or another.
The use of a multi-language guest sign-in/out system like WhosOnLocation can improve safety in your workplace by ensuring clear communication. Depending on why your guests are visiting, they could be asked to read and answer a number of questions, be made aware of on-site risks, complete an induction and/or sign an NDA to ensure their safety while on-site.
It’s important that any information you are asking a guest to read, understand and sign is properly answered and understood. Your Security or Health & Safety Team is responsible for ensuring policies and procedures are followed by everyone on-site, so remove the language barrier and induct your visitors in their native language.
Multi-language is especially helpful if you have a small, unmanned reception area. Visitors signing in through your self-serve Kiosk can easily switch between your default language and any of the other languages without the need of front-of-house staff to guide them through the sign-in/out process.
WhosOnLocation Multi-Language feature offers 11 different languages for signing in via a self-service Kiosk or with the front-of-house team
Keep the front desk looking professional and tidy by digitizing your processes and keeping traditional ‘paperwork’ to a minimum (or removing it altogether). A well-organized, digital filing system can help your front-of-house stay efficient (and tidy!).
With multiple deliveries passing through a reception daily, it’s important to ensure mail doesn’t clutter the front desk or pose a trip hazard for your employees and guests. A system that allows your delivery agents to sign in packages is a game changer for front-of-house teams.
A good delivery system will:
Pre-registering guests is a great way to help your front-of-house team manage their time, and create a fantastic visitor experience for your guests.
Empowering your team to pre-register their own guests when arranging and sending a meeting invite allows the front-of-house team to prepare for visitors in advance, pre-printing visitor badges, organizing parking or keys and equipment needed while on-site.
Your front-of-house team are not the only ones who are empowered with the right information when pre-registering a guest; so are your guests. When pre-registering a guest, you can also send a pre-meeting email, including:
WhosOnLocation has an extensive list of features with each subscription; including multi-language, deliveries and guest pre-registration. Give your front-of-house team the tools they need to make the best customer experience and ensuring your guests have all the information they need up front.
Take a free 30 day trial of WhosOnLocation and revolutionize the way you welcome guest on-site.
3 minutes read time
Last month, visitor management became a hot topic as IBM posed some questions around Kiosk and reception security.
Here at WhosOnLocation, security concepts and techniques have been integral to our design right from the beginning. We continue to invest heavily in security improvements and we regularly carry out security audits, including third-party audits.
Further to these robust processes, and in light of IBM’s recent findings, there are some steps you can take as a customer to make your sign-in process even more secure.
The first concern IBM raised is how easy it might be for a visitor to sign-in without any identifying information. The WhosOnLocation application offers a setting for “host badge pass authorization”, requiring the host to verify the visitor before their pass can be printed. Your WhosOnLocation administrator can turn this feature on for you.
For further security, we also offer WolScan.
This WhosOnLocation add-on provides an extra layer of security to the sign-in process. Using the app, the host can scan a visitor’s passport, driver’s license or other photo ID to capture their information and verify their identity.
The second concern IBM raised is how easy it is to access other people’s information within a visitor management system.
At the Kiosk, access to the WhosOnLocation application is incredibly limited. Both employee and visitor privacy controls restrict the information available to users when signing in and out from a Kiosk.
In addition to this, no data is stored on the Kiosk itself, so if a visitor was able to gain access to the device, they wouldn’t be able to retrieve any of your WhosOnLocation employee or visitor data.
Within the WhosOnLocation application itself, all access to data is governed by access rights and every user attempting to access your WhosOnLocation account is authenticated by username and password.
So how can you further secure this information? Your WhosOnLocation administrator can define granular access privileges to individual users, so make sure you use this feature. Be selective with who can access data, and make sure only essential access is granted to each user.
Lastly, IBM questioned is how easy it is for a visitor to break out of the application at the Kiosk and interact with the operating system.
Even if your hardware only hosts your visitor management software, giving visitors access to the operating system could pose a security threat. If a visitor is able to exit the application, there’s a chance they could use tools to install remote access malware.
We’ve been looking into the best way to secure your Kiosk by locking the screen to the application. While this process is quick and easy for iPads, Windows devices can be a little trickier to secure, and may require the help of your organization’s IT team.
To help you on your way, we’ve updated our helpdesk article.
3 minutes read time
On April 28, the International Labour Organisation will look back over 100 years of progress for the World Day for Safety and Health at Work. This year, there’ll be a clear focus on the future of occupational safety. How can you use new technology to make your workplace safer than ever before?
Here at WhosOnLocation, we dedicate our working lives to answering this question. So if you’re looking to update your safety procedures, you’ve come to the right place.
The first step you can take to secure your facility is to use people-tracking software. Applications like WhosOnLocation can not only help you understand who’s on-site in real time, but they can track which zones they’re in, too.
So when you need to account for your employees and visitors, you know the information is all in one place.
Whichever way you define a lone worker, the chances are you’ll need special processes to keep them safe.
A variety of apps offer an easy solution for keeping tabs on lone workers. For example, WhosOnLocation includes features like mobile sign-in, GPS geolocation and lone worker reporting. If you’re interested in finding the right app for your workers, take a look at our guide here.
Keeping track of when a contractor’s insurances, qualifications or induction processes need updating can be difficult in any organization. With WhosOnLocation, you can grant your contractors access to the Service Provider Portal, so they can fill in their own details. You’ll also receive notifications when their documentation needs renewing, so you know you’ll always be on top of contractor safety. Even better – these automated updates will save you some time, too.
[vc_row][vc_column][vc_single_image image=”9190″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]In high security organizations, just signing a visitor in using their name might not be enough. With WolScan, you can add an extra layer of security to the sign-in process by capturing the information from your visitor, contractor or employee’s ID card.
Not only does this allow the host to better verify the identity of those coming into the facility, it also makes sign-in a lot faster!
The OSHA rules and regulations can be a stiff read, so it’s important to make your safety inductions as interesting as possible. We recommend using engaging formats – whether that’s induction videos, tasks or even interactive training modules.
One option is to use WhosOnLocation to create an eLearning Induction Course. You can even set restrictions using triggers, so anyone who’s failed to complete the course is unable to enter the organization.
OSHA warns that workplace emergencies are often more common than people think, so it’s important to have a robust evacuation plan in place.
Employers need to be able to account for everyone on site quickly and easily during an evacuation to minimise risk. This can be tricky, especially if your employees and visitors are working across a multi-zoned or multi-level site.
By using a cloud-based evacuation app, you’ll be able to work collaboratively with other floor wardens or safety marshals to verify the safety of everyone on-site.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
6 minutes read time
Like most SaaS companies, we use the Agile framework to develop features and release them into the wild.
We’ll get a customer request for an enhancement and it will go through to the Agile team, who will then decide whether or not we’ll build it.
If yes, we’ll include it in the backlog, formulate a sprint, test it, write up documentation, and release it into production.
But it’s not how we build the features that’s important, nor is it the speed to market, or the efficiency or our development team… it’s why we’re building them in the first place.
And sometimes even if you get the “why” right, you can still get it wrong in development… as our Head of Technology, Tom Peck, learned in 2018.
We chatted to Tom Peck, Head of Technology, to hear about some of WhosOnLocation’s ups and downs in Product Development.
TOM: It would probably be “Inter-Zone” (April, 2018).
As a bit of background, when we’re developing WhosOnLocation, we have to consider MLP (Minimum Likeable Product). What this means to us is that to release something that is bare bones it still has to be complete and be “liked” by our customers. It can’t be something half-baked. On the flip side, it shouldn’t be so over-engineered that the release is overly complex and people struggle with it.
“Our team were so focused on having their heads down making sure existing Kiosks continued unaffected by the release that we failed to see the complex beast that we had created.”
TOM: So yeah, unfortunately with our “Inter-Zone” release, we went down the over-engineered route. What started off as a simple improvement to Kiosks (to allow for people who are currently on-site to switch zones via an Inter-Zone Kiosk) ended up being a massive rebuild of Kiosks, a complex data migration and an introduction of sophisticated zone-based rules to the mix.
Funnily enough though, as time went on we started to realize that Inter-Zone actually fixed a lot of bugs. As with all software development companies, we have a backlog of bugs to address.
The development of [Inter-Zone] spanned many months, numerous sprints and multiple workshops. After the release, as we started working through the bug backlog, we found a number of them were no longer reproducible and were therefore “fixed by Inter-Zone”. This phrase has stuck with us with and become a meme for any bug that can no longer be reproduced – “perhaps it was fixed by Inter-Zone?!”
TOM: The Inter-Zone release was met with excitement but also some confusion by our existing customers. Not only had we introduced the concept of “Inter-Zone” we had also introduced the concept of zone-based rules – allowing a Kiosk to be configured with a specific set of questions based on the zone and location a guest was visiting. Our team were so focused on having their heads down making sure existing Kiosks continued unaffected by the release that we failed to see the complex beast that we had created.
Upon reflection and after receiving a number of struggling customer queries, we took a step back and with a few small tasks we were able to revise the setup and configuration process, greatly simplifying the interface.
TOM: I would actually have to say that our best feature so far has been Inter-Zone too. [Laughs]
TOM: Once we learned from the initial release and ironed out the issues, it’s actually been a really successful release. We knew our customers wanted it, and they were really excited when we initially released it. It was just too confusing. We can tell it’s working a million times better now by the number of queries and requests for support, and by the kinds of things our users are asking.
It’s also just objectively a much better user experience. We realized we had been looking at UX “frame-by-frame” rather than considering the user’s journey through the whole feature.
TOM: Several iterations later we definitely believe so! This is why we love what we do. We can release, take a step back, gather feedback, iterate, release again and repeat. You can’t get it right the first time, every time!
Ultimately, our product boils down to 3 key benefits for users…
And every feature we build must give the users value in at least one of those key areas.
For example, we have recently released ID Scanning. The benefits of this feature are:
If lots of people request a feature or product, that’s a really good indicator that a significant chunk of our customers will use it – the higher the benefit and customer demand, the higher priority.
Where we can, we’ll also include some customers in the process to get feedback on user experience as we go. Sometimes, if we’re considering building a big feature, we’ll survey our users before we begin the process to make sure we know what they want.
The success of a feature can be measured by the number of people using it, and the reported impact of the feature (direct from customers themselves!).
When possible, we’ll ask our users what kind of impact our product (or a recently released feature) has made for them.
“Using WhosOnLocation has saved me at least 4 hours a day, the ROI speaks for itself”
– Shanyn Fox, Facility Contract Coordinator, Gold Coast Private Hospital
On the flipside, if the feature has low usage or we’ve received complaints or questions from confused users, we know there’s still work to be done.
And as we’ve learned, listening and reworking can bring back almost any feature from the reject bin!
WhosOnLocation provides people presence management software that monitors the safe and secure movement of people through buildings and work sites. Our powerful, cloud-based solution unites visitor, contractor, employee, and emergency management, enabling organizations to secure their facilities and ensure the safety of every person on-site.
Armed with a rich, unified source of people presence information, our users are empowered to make more strategic, data- driven decisions that mitigate risk, reduce overhead costs, and streamline operations.
WhosOnLocation serves organizations in 35 countries around the world, and manages over 13 million secure movements through thousands of locations each year.
4 minutes read time
As part of compliance and good governance, many organizations require employees and contractors to go through an induction process.
Inductions typically cover things like health and safety information, security policies, emergency procedures and a bit about the organization’s safety culture. You can also take the opportunity to talk about employee and contractor OSHA rights, how to report an injury or incident, and who to go to with feedback or concerns.
Inductions can be delivered via PowerPoint, paper-based course booklets, guided site walkthroughs or videos.
A good induction process will…
Here are 5 ways you can make your inductions more effective:
If you’re still managing and running site inductions manually, consider using an induction management system or app. Instead of sending around new presentations and training documents to site induction managers whenever there’s an updated process or new regulation, you can simply make the changes in one place and know it’s ready to go straight away.
According to IWH researchers, “almost 80 percent of workers who were in their first year of employment could not remember receiving any workplace safety or orientation training.” Learning is more likely to be memorable when you use a variety of media (videos, images, quizzes etc) rather than just print-outs or a slideshow full of text.
New Zealand airline AirNZ is famous for its health and safety briefing videos – and the procedures really do stick!
When you’re looking for an induction management system, choose one that integrates with your visitor management system (or better still, choose an application that combines both). This way, if it’s someone’s first time working on-site, they can go through the induction when they sign-in for the first time. You can also choose to send out an induction link so people can complete it before they even arrive on-site. This is a huge time-saver, especially if you have multiple contractors arriving on-site and not enough kiosks to go around!
Use custom groups or segments to make inductions more relevant. Contractors and employees might see different inductions. And contractors working on off-site locations might see a different induction again. Making your inductions more tailored to the audience will help boost engagement and make the information more memorable.
Beyond the induction, what are their next steps? For example, let people know if they will they need equipment training before they start work, when will this happen and who will be training them.
Gold Coast Private Hospital have a large number of contractors coming in and out of their facilities on any given day of the year. They wanted to find a reliable cloud-based application to free up resources so they could focus on their day to day role and ensure accurate tracking and records.
The biggest benefit of implementing WhosOnLocation for GCPH has been gaining an efficiency in employee time of about 25 hours per week.
With the old paper based system, extra time was spent on-site completing paperwork. GCPH now send the induction link to the contractor prior to coming onsite as most have smartphones and can complete it before site arrival. It’s a win-win for both employees and contractors.
Title image: Jesse Lora, NAVFAC (Source)
6 minutes read time
Updated: March 2020
From keeping tabs on assets to managing incidents, here are 18 facility management software designed to give you data and reporting for compliance, operational visibility, and better decision-making.
More than ever before, organizations expect Facility Managers to drive value in efficiency and processes to reduce operations costs, drive sustainability initiatives, and improve health and safety on-site.
The challenge for Facility Managers? To maintain visibility over all these objectives and collect actionable data for decision-makers. Facility Managers who successfully collate data and create actionable insights can better identify problems and deliver strategic direction.
You can’t effectively manage operational data with notebooks, spreadsheets, and emails – especially if you’re a Facility Manager with a portfolio of buildings in multiple locations. And without a way to maintain accurate records, run meaningful reports and conduct expert analysis, your data has no strategic purpose.
The good news? Ever-advancing IoT and automation technology mean that Facility Managers can provide reporting for everything from visitor sign-ins to expired service provider qualifications.
Here are the 18 facility management software that will help you gain visibility of processes and generate meaningful insights from data.
Facility Managers are often under pressure to find service providers or vendors in a short time-frame. However, you still need to be confident that all requirements, like qualifications and insurance, are met. A contractor management system ensures you tick all the boxes before the contract begins.
Not only will it help you with the sourcing process, but it will also minimize the risk for existing service providers too. Your contractor management system will notify you when insurances are about to expire, or when contracts are up for renewal.
Benefits: Compliance, Safety, Security
ServiceChannel provides Facilities Managers with a single platform to source, procure, manage, and pay for repair and maintenance services from commercial contractors across their enterprise.
WhosOnLocation: Contractor Management
Manage contractor presence in and out of all your sites, including remote locations and construction sites. Store contractor documents and ensure qualifications or inductions are valid and up-to-date.
Designed to support a variety of contractor and contractor processes with the aims of maximizing the use of your established contractor base and protecting your organization from contractor-induced risk.
Nimblex features a complete audit trail of all user activity, automated contracts, as well as sophisticated reporting to provide transparency and control for managers.
Monitor asset maintenance schedules and costs, and receive notifications when an asset is performing below a certain efficiency level (or has malfunctioned). This way, you’ll minimize the risk of on-site injuries and have insight into the long-term value of assets.
Some asset management software can automatically send a service or maintenance request to an authorized contractor when an issue is detected.
Benefits: Safety, Cost-Reduction
Asset Panda helps people track, manage, and support their assets throughout their life cycle. Their software is configured to the way our clients work, secure, and leverages the mobile devices your employees already carry.
The online platform provides a control center to effectively monitor anything & everything related to maintenance. Modules include an Asset Register, Requests, Work Orders, History, Preventative Maintenance, Inspections, Readings, and more.
Maximo, when combined with the power of IoT data from people, sensors, and devices, can provide warning signals from assets. With this data, it also enables near real-time visibility into asset usage across multiple sites, extends the useful life of equipment, and more.
Strengthen the security of your facilities and assets, and protect intellectual property by preventing unauthorized or threatening activity with robust visitor tracking and reporting.
Visitor management gives you visibility of people signing in and out of your facility while providing a slick brand experience. Some visitor management systems require additional hardware purchases, and others allow you to set up kiosks on existing computers or tablets.
Benefits: Compliance, Safety, Security, Brand Image
Proxyclick is a cloud-based visitor management solution suitable for small, midsize and large enterprises. Key features of Proxyclick include visitor registration, instant pictures, badge printing, instant notifications and reporting.
WhosOnLocation: Visitor Management
Ensure the safety and security of site visitors and meet compliance requirements. Make sure visitors have completed any relevant steps before being approved on-site, such as acknowledging hazards or signing any waivers or NDAs.
Sine is a cloud-based visitor management solution that serves small, midsize and large businesses. Key features of the solution include visitor registration, automatic notifications, badge printing, reporting and analytics.
The Receptionist for iPad
A cloud-based visitor management solution that serves businesses of all sizes across all industries. Primary features are visitor logs, visitor badges, visitor notifications (via SMS, email and Slack) and two-way communication with visitors.
A global shift to more responsible environmental practices is driving corporations to focus on energy consumption, water usage, carbon emissions. Facility Managers have been tasked with the monitoring and tracking of environmental data to assist strategic decision-making, compliance and cost savings.
Environment management software help Facility Managers manage processes, store documents (such as permits and and legals), track incidents and report on data all in one place.
Benefits: Cost-Reduction, Brand Image
Effectively manage your organization’s environmental data and processes. Easily manage, track and report all of your environmental metrics, streamline environmental incident reporting, and facilitate compliance.
Manage key environmental aspects of air, water and waste compliance. Deploy a flexible waste and environmental management system to meet permitting requirements, equipped with pre-built reports to meet local, state and federal reporting regulations.
The Airsweb environmental software solution provides an effective, flexible business tool to record, report, and analyse resource consumption (e.g. water, energy and raw materials) and production output.
Facility Managers need to work closely with Health & Safety and Human Resources to develop comprehensive emergency and incident processes. Whether the incident or emergency is safety- or security-related, you need to be able to account for everyone on-site and communicate mass updates.
Emergency management systems will give you visibility of what happened, at what time, and where. You’ll also be able to see who was verified safe and by whom. Run detailed reports on this data, post-incident, to provide valuable insights into the efficiency of your emergency procedures.
Benefits: Compliance, Safety, Security
MissionMode Situation Center enables you to pre-populate your organization’s BCM plans, templates, contact lists, and more into an easy-to-use collaborative incident management solution that speeds communication, tracks progress, and simplifies project management.
WhosOnLocation: Emergency Management
Quickly and easily account for everyone in the event of an emergency with the mobile application. Track cleared zones, allow people to self-verify their safety via SMS, view requests for help and monitor real-time evacuation progress.
An all-in-one emergency management software tailored to any organization’s specific needs. All of your emergency management tasks and responsibilities are streamlined with increased, real-time communication and situational awareness.
Smartplan (by TRP)
TRP’s proven web-based, database-driven approach will enable you to streamline and customize your company’s preparedness program based on “best practices”, company protocols, and regulatory requirements.
6 minutes read time
Nowadays, there’s an app for everything. Unless you do all your business on ledger paper and an abacus, it’s likely you know the constant pain of needing a new digital solution for this or that.
If you’ve noticed this, you might have noticed another interesting trend – the integration of everything. Look at solutions like Zapier or Station, apps with the primary function of connecting other apps.
This concept is going physical too. Or rather, what’s physical is going digital; we’re calling it the internet of things. The connectivity between machines, all integrated into one intelligent network. A network that’s expected to have more than 30 billion connected devices by 2020.
But where does this all fit in the safety and security landscape?
The global smart building market is expected to grow 34% between 2016 and 2024 – from a value of $5,800 million USD to $61,000 million USD. (Source: Zion Market Research).
Smart buildings have many benefits, from occupant comfort to reducing energy consumption. But perhaps the most important benefits to increasingly connected systems within our buildings are the advances in safety and physical security.
According to industry experts’ insights shared in the report, “intelligent security systems will be offering services that will be utilizing the latest technologies thus providing enhanced reliability.”
These systems will be embedded in the network of the building, expanding functionality and better protecting people and assets. An example of this in action is the integration of people presence management systems with physical access control.
People presence management is a centralized system that encompasses the management of visitors, contractors, employees or incidents on-site. Visitor management is one component of people presence management software or cloud applications.
People presence management systems offer much more comprehensive safety and security features than its components can as standalone solutions. All in one system, you can run inductions, send live hazard awareness notifications, track and monitor lone workers and perform evacuations on a smartphone or tablet.
When integrated with an access control solution, the result is a powerful system suited to organizations with complex safety and security needs.
Visitor management, in some form, is accepted as a must-have in many industries. But tracking people who sign in and out is only one part of keeping a site safe and secure.
To ensure your workplace supports the safety and security of all employees, contractors and visitors, there is much more to consider, for example:
The purpose of using a people presence management system is being able to centralize these functions, so that you can monitor them all in one place.
You can even set up alerts to notify you when something needs attention, for example if a lone worker has exceeded their expected duration in a freezer zone, or if a contractor has tried to enter a zone without the relevant safety training.
An organization’s security is only as strong as its weakest link. A smart manufacturing facility might have ground-breaking cyber-security measures in place to protect confidential project information – but then use a paper-based sign-in sheet to check in visitors.
Any company serious about protecting their data needs to consider implementing a physical security system with zone access control above and beyond cybersecurity measures.
What does this look like? A people presence management system allows inter-zone kiosks to be set up at zone entry points, for example, the door to a server room. The system integrates with an access control system, and will only unlock the door if the person has the relevant permissions. If they don’t, security personnel will be notified that an unauthorized person tried to enter the server room.
To ensure the safety of every person throughout a facility or work site and meet U.S. regulations, organizations must have information about the identities and whereabouts of all visitors, contractors, and employees on-site.
A people presence management system helps organizations comply with federal health and safety regulations and serves to protect both the employer and the people in its duty of care.
Using a people presence management application, employers have central access to people presence data. This enables them to quickly and easily account for everyone in the event of an emergency. Additionally, floor wardens or emergency marshals can use the mobile evacuation function to track cleared zones, view requests for help, monitor real-time evacuation progress, and more. You can report on all this kind of information (and more) for post-incident reporting as well.
A note on GDPR compliance:
Make sure your solution allows you to be GDPR-compliant if you are processing data of EU residents. In fact, being GDPR-compliant is really best practice even if you’re not.
|Related: GDPR: What you need to know|
Biometric authorization, AI answering visitors’ queries, coffee machines that make visitors a latté while they wait in reception… it’s all part of the future of people presence management. And it’s increasingly a reality with smart buildings already using integrating security systems.
Our vision is for a world where facilities aren’t designed for productivity and streamlined operations, they are designed for the comfort, safety and accessibility of all occupants – from full-time employees to first-time visitors. This is all possible with a people presence management system.
Increased safety, better physical security and more robust compliance are all core benefits of using people presence management. And as an added bonus, it’s likely you’ll notice a huge improvement in visitor experience and first impressions of your brand too.
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There is an upward trend in companies shifting from spreadsheet or paper-based sign-in systems to visitor registration software.
A digital log of site visitors is more secure and it makes it much easier to pull up live and historic site visitor reports.
But before you take the plunge and decide on a product, have you considered a more widely functional people presence management solution?
People presence management is a revolutionary way to manage more than just visitors or people coming on-site. Using people presence management software, you can measure and track movements around the site (for example, zone-to-zone movements) and even at off-site locations.
With people presence management, kiosks aren’t single purpose sign-in / sign-out points. They become a tool for running inductions, a site hazard awareness resource or a checkpoint for qualifications and zone access permissions.
Ask yourself: What problem am I looking to solve? Do I want an easy way for visitors to sign-in to your office so that you can provide a smooth brand experience?
Yes? Then a simple visitor management app could be your ideal solution.
But if you’re an enterprise-scale organization with 150+ employees, multiple sites and/or zones, complex safety and security requirements and a need to accurately track each and every person on-site, consider upgrading to people presence management software.
Industries that need this kind of deep, integrated functionality are usually high security or high hazard facilities or sites that require stringent access control. These typically include…
This chart illustrates the kind of functionality you can expect from a people presence management system.
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Our integration with Brivo is one of our most powerful features.
Combining WhosOnLocation with Brivo’s cloud access control software can offer more advanced safety and security functionality to our people presence software.
In fact, it’s so good, we’re using it ourselves at WhosOnLocation HQ.
People who are regularly approved to be on-site (for example, employees or vendors/contractors) can use Brivo Pass to let them on-site.
If your entry point is a door, hold the button down in the app and the door will open. This syncs with WhosOnLocation, so you’ll be automatically marked as on-site.
Turn on Location Services for Brivo Pass to notify you when you’re close by. As soon as you’re in range, you can unlock the door and sign in.
Pro tip: To make it even easier, you don’t even need to open the Brivo Pass app! Save your most frequently used doors or access points to your favourites and they’ll appear on your lock screen in the Brivo Pass widget.
At WhosOnLocation HQ, we have our visitor Kiosk set up outside our secure front entrance. When a visitor signs in at the Kiosk, WhosOnLocation will automatically notify a nominated employee and/or the visitor’s host (if they have one) to let them know there’s someone waiting at the entrance.
If you work in a larger office or corporation that shares a building with other businesses, your visitors have likely experienced this scenario – they sign in and receive a badge pass, but they can’t use it to follow their host through the turnstiles or gates. Then when they need to visit the bathroom, they have to borrow their host’s pass to get back to the meeting room. Except, now they don’t.
With Brivo’s visitor groups and a supported optical reader, visitors can use the barcode or QR code on their own visitor label to access all the areas they need to. By setting up visitor groups in Brivo and syncing this information with WhosOnLocation, you can specify which doors, turnstiles, and barriers your visitors are able to access and make their visit even smoother.
We have set up custom alerts at WhosOnLocation HQ.
If you’re the last person in the office, you’ll get a message once the second-to-last person signs out.
We also receive a message later in the evening if we’ve forgotten to sign out using either our Brivo Pass, the front kiosk, or our swipe card… woops!
Pro tip: You can use custom alerts for almost anything. For example, you could set up a notification for the last person in your facility to set the alarm, or the first person in the office to turn the coffee machine on!
WhosOnLocation allows you to set up your own operating hours. For us, it’s 8am until 5pm, Monday to Friday. If you’re a manufacturing facility, it might be 4am until 7pm, Monday to Saturday. You can customize these however you want.
When an employee signs in outside standard operating hours at WhosOnLocation, Brivo unlocks the door, and our nominated security contacts are notified that someone is there after hours.
We’ve also set up a rule that allows specific approved contractors to be let in after hours. Our security contacts get an alert for those movements too.
Other than that, Brivo keeps the door firmly shut!
Pro tip: WhosOnLocation rules and actions (we call these Triggers) are extremely customizable and powerful. You could, for example, set up a Trigger for Brivo to unlock the door for vendors or contractors after hours if they’re from a specific company.
Note for WhosOnLocation customers: Brivo data syncs with WhosOnLocation, which in turn syncs with WolMobile and WolEvac. This means all your people presence data will be up-to-date across all apps, so your list of people on-site in an emergency will be accurate.
To learn more about using the Brivo integration to its full extent, visit our Helpdesk.
3 minutes read time
Article updated: January 2019
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was enforced on May 25 2018.
The purpose of the GDPR is to:
“…harmonize data privacy laws across Europe, to protect and empower all EU citizens’ data privacy and to reshape the way organizations across the region approach data privacy.”
The maximum penalty for breaching GDPR on or after the enforcement date are fines up to 4% of annual global turnover or €20 million (whichever is greater).
For businesses using visitor management apps/software, here are some key things you need to know:
Make sure you are only collecting the bare minimum of data for operational purposes. Be specific and transparent about how this data will be used so that every site visitor understands how and why their information is being collected.
Don’t “remember” visitor information by default without explicit consent. Of course, some people will want their information saved if they are regularly visiting your site – just make sure visitors can voluntarily opt in to have their data saved for next time. Additionally, only keep records for as long as is absolutely necessary.
Data subjects may withdraw their consent for you to hold their data at any time, but note that the subject’s rights may be measured against “the public interest in the availability of the data”.
Data Processors (e.g. WhosOnLocation) and Data Controllers (e.g. WhosOnLocation customers) must both appoint a DPO. The DPO must be appointed on the basis of professional qualities such as expert knowledge on data protection law and practices.
WhosOnLocation has been working through an incredibly thorough process to ensure that our software provides features that enable our customers (Data Controllers) to be GDPR compliant.
Some of these features will include:
As a Data Processor, WhosOnLocation must also notify our customers of a data breach “without undue delay”.
Are you processing the data of EU citizens or offering a product or service in the EU? Are you using third party vendors to process or collect any kind of personal data? Make sure your vendors are GDPR compliant. You will also need to have a legal expert review your privacy, data collection and data processing policies.
To read about the key changes implemented in May, visit the EU GDPR FAQ page.
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In 2015, 4,836 workers died from work-related injuries or illnesses in the United States. A significant portion of those fatalities – 7.3%, or over 350 – were in the manufacturing industry (United States Department of Labor).
Changes in health and safety legislation and practices have seen a huge reduction in work-related fatalities in the past decades. Since 1970, an estimated 75,000 lives have been saved in the United States through more effective health and safety management. That’s around 1,500 lives saved per year on average.
But there are still approximately 2.9 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses reported by private industry employers annually (a recently published US DOL statistic from 2016).
First and foremost, the cost is human. As an organization, you want to take care of your employees and foster a positive workplace culture.
But there are real fiscal costs associated with poor health and safety practices too.
According to the United States Department of Labor, businesses spend $170 billion a year on costs related to occupational injuries and illnesses – and these expenses come directly out of company profits.
But employee safety doesn’t cost. It pays. Workplaces that establish safety and health management systems can actually reduce their injury and illness costs by 20-40% (US Department of Labor).
|Related Infographic: Safety Statistics From The USA And Beyond|
To help ensure you have a tight grip on the safety and security of everyone on-site, use a visitor, contractor and employee management solution like WhosOnLocation.
You can use WhosOnLocation to…
To learn more about how effective people presence management can vastly improve your site safety, download our latest white paper below.
Improving safety: Reduce Incidents Through Hazard Awareness and Verify the Safety of People When an Incident Occurs
As the safety landscape changes, organizations face new demands on an almost daily basis. The pressures to increase efficiency, deliver ROI, reduce risk and meet compliance are becoming top-level concerns.