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Should You Digitise Your Visitor Management?

Should You Digitise Your Visitor Management?
03 November 2021

Research shows that two-thirds of businesses have not yet digitised their visitor management, so what are the barriers?

Businesses and employees have shown resilience as they have adjusted to hybrid working. However, the pressure to gather increasingly detailed visitor data, including in some cases COVID or vaccination status, remains as companies consider how best to make employees feel safe in the workplace.

A survey by Crown Records Management suggests that companies may be unable to manage or keep it with the data. It showed that only 34 per cent of businesses said their visitor management process has been digitised.


Figure Even Lower in FM Sector


This figure was even lower in the FM sector at 16 per cent and in the legal sector at 32 per cent – but higher in healthcare (40 per cent) and retail (42 per cent).

20 per cent of businesses identified visitor management as an area of the business which would most benefit from digital transformation. This figure was higher in retail, at 32 per cent, and in healthcare at 28 per cent.

Antony Biondi, Head of ECM at Crown Records Management, said: “Visitor management is increasingly a big topic for businesses across almost all sectors, so these figures are worrying.

“The need to collect more data than ever before is a challenge and, despite the easing of restrictions, it shows no sign of slowing down.

“Companies which are still relying on a paper trail, such as visitor sign-in sheets, will soon find themselves overwhelmed and unable to run reports on visitors or track visitor access. They may also run into problems when asked to provide information when it is needed to protect both visitors and employees.”

Antony added: “It will be interesting to see if ideas like proof of double vaccination are also the direction of travel for the workplace, because it adds another level to visitor information.

“The good news is that digitised systems and visitor management software are available which can save time, transform the visitor experience and protect businesses against data threats.

“It’s clear from our survey results that many companies have put off investing in digital solutions, perhaps prioritising other areas of the business. As offices keep up with a changing landscape, it is important that visitor management rises up the agenda.”


Safety Concerns?


Virtual reception systems and other automated visitor management platforms are, like any IoT-enabled system, open to security vulnerability. This factor may be contributing to the lack of uptake reported by Crown Records Management.

If visitor management systems are compromised, attackers could obtain physical access to a building or even gain valuable data on visitors themselves. 

In a 2019 article, Daniel Crowley, a researcher at IBM X-Force Red, a global team of "white hat" hackers hired to break into organisations and uncover risky vulnerabilities, identified several issues in a number of visitor management system products.

His team took a closer look at the security of five popular visitor management systems and discovered 19 previously undisclosed vulnerabilities across all the vendors. 

Picture: a photograph of a person signing into a reception desk using a QR code. A receptionist can be seen in the background

Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 03 November 2021


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