The Ultimate Guide To Visitor Management Systems
At some point in their life, everyone has walked into a business and stood at the counter waiting on someone to acknowledge them. Many times, this “wait” can create anxiety as the guest tries to determine what type of reception they will receive. Rather than creating anxiety and angst, a Visitor Management System can guide visitors’ reception and reduce the stress that comes with it.
1. What is a Visitor Management System?
A visitor management system (VMS) is a software created to allow companies to strategically align the intake of visitors with their company goals. Companies can design a personalized experience for all types of visitors meanwhile tracking, verifying, and storing their guest’s information which allows them to continue working without interruptions.
* Why is Visitor Management important?
It is important to store accurate details of visitors without the need for large filing cabinets. Rather companies can rely on a Visitor Management System to provide them with a secure location to store all the detail, the ability to sort the information, and print data sets on command.
2. Types of Visitor Management System Technologies
With Technological advancements, multiple visitor management systems are available. But, not all visitor management systems are created equally.
- Pen and Paper Visitor Management Systems
- Computer Visitor Management Systems
- Visitor Management Software as a Service
* Pen and Paper Visitor Management Systems
The Pen and Paper are the original visitor’s Management System. This is the version that has been around for many years. Although it is a low-cost version, many factors come into play when relying on the receptionist to make sure people sign in, use their true name, and hope that someone can read their handwriting.
Not to mention that you file it and keep the records. Records collected through the paper method are often unreliable due to the lack of legible signatures, and approximation on times.
Having the sign-in sheet exposed can also reveal your company’s clientele and visitors’ information for any wandering eyes to see. This method is also nearly impossible to track records that haven’t been recorded recently or within the last few days.
* Computer Visitor Management Systems
As technological advancements occurred a computer-based Visitor Management System was a good transition. But as technology has advanced better and more secure options have.
But legacy software systems have many flaws that make them outdated such as the requirement to have a power supply to function, an operator, server space, and anti-virus software.
* Visitor Management Software as a Service
Visitor Management Software as a service is connected directly to the cloud where all the visitor information is stored in a secure location.
By utilizing technological advances such as iPad and Tablets, companies can have visitor sign-in without the requirement of a receptionist. The software can be used by and managed by anyone in the office because it is designed for ease of use.
3. How Does A Modern Visitor Management System Work?
* A Visitor Signs In On A VMS Device
A modern-day Visitor Management System utilizes the newest technology by incorporating a downloadable app to an iPad or Samsung Tablet rather than using a large kiosk to complete the check-in process.
* The VMS Notifies the Employee about Their Guest
Once the visitor has checked in through the iPad or Tablet, the visitor management system will then notify the host that they have a visitor. The host will receive a notification through SMS text message, email, or through an integrated application such as Slack.
* The Employee Meets Their Visitor in the Lobby
When the host receives the notification they will also receive a photo of their visitor, so they can quickly distinguish the visitor and can immediately address the visitor by meeting them in the reception area.
4. How Digital Visitor Management Systems Can Help Modern Offices?
A modern day Visitor Management System utilizes the newest technology to ease visitor check-in process and enhance office security.
* Benefits of Visitor Management Systems
- Make A Better First Impression
- Improves Office Productivity
- Enhances Office Security
- Resolves Compliance Issues
- GDPR Compliance
- ITAR Compliance
- C-TPAT Compliance
- FSMA Compliance
- Builds a Strong Brand Image
* Make A Better First Impression
As we all know, first impressions are extremely important in today’s society. Therefore, the first impression a visitor receives as they enter a business is just as important as the first impression when meeting someone important for the first time.
By including the check-in process with the company’s strategic alignment process, the visitor’s experience is brought to the forefront and can be a focus for the company.
By creating a goal-focused first impression visitors will leave feeling welcomed, listened to, and happy to have the experience.
* Improves Office Productivity
Organizations whether it is government or private, profitable or non-for-profit, small, med, or large, all have visitors and they all must go through the reception area.
A visitor management system will streamline the reception process by making it easier for all types of visitors to sign in, receive a visitor badge, get the wifi credentials, sign legal documents, and notify their host that they have a guest to mention a few.
* Enhances Office Security
With a Visitor Management System, office security is at it’s easiest. With a current log of all the employees and visitors, security can account for anyone’s location at any given time.
By utilizing the badge printing capabilities, visitors can be quickly identified ensuring that they are not wandering into a part of the building they should not be in.
Also in case of an emergency, the VMS also has emergency notifications to let everyone in the office know if they need to take shelter or evacuation accompanied by evacuation plans.
* Resolves Compliance Issues
A visitor management system will assist organizations with their regulatory compliance issues, whether its is with GDPR, ITAR, C-TPAT, or FSMA.
* GDPR Compliance
In May 2018, The EU ‘s (European Union) new data compliance framework General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) went into effect.
The GDPR is a set of frameworks requiring any company that collects information from a citizen of the EU be required to provide the information.
* ITAR Compliance
ITAR stands for International Traffic in Arms Regulations. It is a set of export control laws to prevent sensitive information from getting into the hands of foreign nationals.
All manufacturers, exporters, and brokers of defense articles, defense services, and related technical data are required to be ITAR compliant also referred to as ITAR certified.
To become compliant, organizations must register with the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls, must follow certain import and export procedures, and also screen suppliers, vendors, and subcontractors.
Another compliance stipulation that companies must comply with is to have a visitor management process that verifies whether visitors are United States citizens.
Also, visitors may be required to sign an ITAR compliant Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) and a technology control plan (TCP) briefing. Companies must also secure comprehensive visitor records.
A compliant friendly visitor management system will not hinder but help meet all of these compliance requirements. Understand The ITAR – DDTC Public Portal.
* C-TPAT Compliance
The Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism a voluntary program that ensures the safety of all goods entering the United States from foreign suppliers.
Under C-TPAT importers must ensure that the security and integrity of their supply chain stays intact by requiring that detailed records are kept regarding everyone that visits suppliers’ facilities.
* FSMA Compliance
The Food Safety Modernization Act is a set of FDA rules aimed at improving the safety of the U.S. food supply.
The final rule for Mitigation Strategies to Protect Food Against Intentional Contamination otherwise known as the Food Defense Rule, the FDA recommends implementing a check-in/check-out system at security or reception areas, verification of proper identification, screening equipment, and relinquishment of prohibited items, enforce a visitor policy that ensures proper identification, rules for restricted areas, and finally a policy provisions for a driver that require check-in along with gathering vehicle information.
* Builds a Strong Brand Image
When a visitor walks through the door of a business, the image that the visitor receives plays an important role in how that visitor will perceive the company.
The company’s goals and objectives may be clear and concise with employees but what about the visitors they receive? With a Visitor Management System, visitors of all types can have a user experience that reflects the company’s brand, image, and goals alike. With a uniquely designed experience, all your visitors will understand how valued they are.
5. What To Look For In a Visitor Management System?
When businesses are looking to take their visitor reception to the next level and want to incorporate a cloud-based visitor management system they must consider the features that make that visitor system unique. All men may be created equal, but not all cloud-based visitor management systems are.
* Top Features You Should Look For In A Top-Notch Visitor Management System
- Cloud-Based Visitor Management
- Faster & Easy Visitor Check-in Experience
- Visitor Pre-Registration Process
- Host Notifications
- Capturing Visitor Pictures
- Badge Printing
- Guest Wi-Fi
- Self-Service Check-In
- Custom Integrations
- Reporting & Security Watch-list
- Branding & Customization
- Customer Support
Top Features of Best Visitor Management System
* Cloud Based Visitor Management – A cloud-based visitor management system (VMS) is a software designed to create a personalized check-in experience for visitors, it also logs and stores guest information, and ensures a safe and secure place for employees to work and collaborate.
* Faster & Easy Visitor Check-in Experience – With a Visitor Management System, companies can ensure they are gathering all the information that they need by creating user experiences for the different types of visitors. Whether the visitor is there for a tour, interview, conference, or making a delivery, everyone can have a user experience that is designed for them.
* Visitor Pre-Registration Process – Pre-registration process allows for employees to fill out a visitor pass for their visitors. This allows employees to have any necessary documents to be sent such as an NDA, Survey, or Assessments prior to the visit. By pre-registering visitors, the receptionist can have an idea of who to expect and can set the tone for visitors by creating an exceptional first impression.
* Host Notifications – Host notifications are one of the most important features when looking at a VMS. This allows businesses to operate daily without interruption to the entire workforce. Rather, when visitors arrive and check-in through the VMS the host will be notified of their visitor and provide them with the guest’s name and a current picture of them. The notifications can be sent through SMS text messages, email, or through an integrated program such as slack.
* Capturing Visitor Pictures – An important feature to all VMS is capturing visitor pictures and keeping them on file. As guests complete the check-in process the picture of the visitor is captured and sent to the host and also stored in the cloud for future check-ins.
* Badge Printing – Visitor badges help security and employees to visually differentiate from visitors meanwhile displaying important visitor information on a customized badge.
* Guest Wi-Fi – Guest Wi-Fi is an important business tool and it is essential for modern workplaces. The Wi-Fi you offer your guests can be leveraged to help your business grow. Guests visiting your office for any business-related purpose can easily connect to your network via the “Guest WiFi” feature available on your Visitor Management System.
* Self-Service Check-In – A great VMS allows visitors to check-in without requiring contact. This allows companies to create a visitor check-in process that is unique to the company.
* Custom Integrations – A Visitor Management System strongly relies on how easily it can integrate applications already active in a company’s operational ecosystem. The system should be able to effortlessly capture data and push it to the digital partners’ software.
* Reporting & Security Watch-list – The Integrated Reporting feature allows users and administrators to download real-time reports of visitor information. A good VMS should also allow companies to create a watch list of visitors that are at a higher risk for security breaches.
* Branding & Customization – All Visitor Management Systems should allow a company to rebrand the system to look and feel as if the VMS is like the company’s own software product.
* Customer Support – A good customer support team should be the perfect go-between for the customers and the developers. They should constantly be looking for ways to improve the products meanwhile working to address customer concerns.
6. How to Choose the Best Visitor Management System for Your Modern Offices?
Your visitors are the most important aspect of your business. You must consider them when deciding on a visitor management system. Here are some questions you will want to answer before making the decision.
* Assess Your Office Needs
Every organization is unique therefore, assessing the needs of the office for a visitor management system is imperative prior to purchasing one. Determine exactly what type of visitor management is needed and why. Here are some questions that the organization may want to consider.
- Do you have multiple locations that need to be secured?
- How much money do you spend on multiple software packages that include, visitor badges, door access, event management, emergency evacuation, and reporting?
- Do you need a system that can give you a competitive edge?
- Do you need to be able to track visitors within the building?
- Does your office have a need for a system that can complete a background check?
- Do you have multiple systems within the office?
- What kind of impact can your reception area have on visitors and potential employees?
* First Thing You Should Consider Is Your Visitors
How many visitors do you receive daily and What types of visitors do you receive?
Visitor types can be Employees, Business Visitors, Volunteers, Contractors, Deliveries and all the above.
* Research Visitor Management Systems and Their Features
You have to research what types of features should be considered when looking for a Visitor Management Software for your modern office.
- Reports – Each VMS system should be able to generate the specific reports that your company needs with the touch of the mouse.
- Reception Management – Ensure that the VMS manages all visitor reception timely and accurately.
- Price – Compare multiple VMS systems to determine the right price point along with available features that are included.
- Integrations – We can effectively integrate with applications that are active in your operational ecosystem.
- Emergency Services – A VMS should be able to protect the organization’s most valuable assets customers and employees
- Security & Compliance – A good VMS should also allow companies to create a watch list of visitors that are at a higher risk for security breaches
- Data Storage – Make sure that whatever VMS you decide on has the highest level of security for your online information
- Notifications – Choose how you are notified when visitors arrive. Through SMS Text Message, Email, or through an integrated service
- Customizable – Ensure that whatever Visitor Management Software you decide on, will give you employees a look and feel as if it is your own company’s design.
- Customer Service – We are here to help you get up and going, as well as overcome any obstacles along the way.
* Shortlist the VMS Product & Start with a Free Trial To Test Product
One way to ensure that you have decided on the best Visitor Management System for your organisation, is to begin a free trial. You can create multiple accounts with different Visitor Management Systems to test that they will provide you with the best features accompanied with the best customer and visitor experience. Create a shortlist of Visitor Management Systems that offer a free trial.
* Create a Visitor Management Plan
One of the most important aspects of considering and implementing a Visitor Management System is devising a Visitor Management Plan. Here are some things to consider when creating the plan.
- Before even creating a Visitor Management Plan is to get the “buy-in” from all levels of the company.
- If the company has a receptionist or front desk staff, they should get their input and buy-in as well, because they will feel as if they are being replaced instead of having a tool to make their job more efficient.
- The first thing a company should do is get multiple departments involved in the creation of the plan such as Key Stakeholders, Security, IT, Front Desk Staff, and the Legal department to insure that all compliance and legal situations can be covered prior to implementation.
- Determine the type of user experience that you would like to have for the different types of visitors.
- Establish one clear leader that will help with the configuration and implementation of the system.
- Devise a Visitor Management Policy that protects the company but also allows visitors to have a unique experience.
- Train Employees with the newest software and integrations.
7. What’s The Future of Modern Offices & Visitor Management Systems?
The future of Visitor Management Systems in modern offices will change the way businesses view visitor reception going forward. With the ability to manage the facility along with creating visitor specific experiences, companies will be able to streamline their reception processes with ROI in mind.
With visitor management constantly changing we can look forward to these types of features in the future: Facial Recognition, GeoFencing, Package Delivery, Background Sexual Offender Registry, and Much Much more.
8. Meet the Fidentity Visitor Management System
Fidentity Visitor Management System is a cloud-based VMS software designed to create a unique and personalized experience for visitors when they enter a business meanwhile tracking, storing, and displaying visitor information in real-time.
Created out of necessity, Fidentity offers many of the features of a high-quality Visitor Management System at a fraction of the cost of the competitors.
We have developed a system that offers our customers the flexibility they need in managing their visitor’s experience all-the-while adding luxury features such as Package Delivery, Event Management, Emergency Evacuation, and Sexual Offender Background Checks.
We feel that we can offer any organization a product that will streamline their visitors and protect the employees and the company’s intellectual property while staying compliant.
Fidentity is brought to you by Zenwork, which has been in business for ten years working in the tax compliance world. This allows us to offer a Top-of-the-Line product to our already existing clients for a fraction of the cost.
9. The Difference between Fidentity VMS and Others
Fidentity Visitor Management Software offers a comprehensive system that is easy for you to set up all at a price that makes a high-quality system available for all types of businesses to use and take advantage of while making your life easier!
10. Try Fidentity for FREE.
“Transforming your workplace is easier than you think. Get started in minutes.”Fidentity Visitor Management System
- You can transform your workplace in merely minutes by using the Fidentity Visitor Management System.
- Let us create a visitor experience that will keep your values at the forefront for everyone to see.
- Within moments you can transform your workplace to be more fluent and effective with Fidentity!
- Unlock your visitor reception potential with the Fidentity Visitor Management Software!
- A Visitor Management System has never been easier to try, and Fidentity will offer the Premium services for free, no credit card information required!