The key reason for installing an access control system is to secure physical access to your buildings or sites.
You want to control and log who is entering which area and when. But choose the right system, and the access control benefits can stretch far beyond protecting people, places and possessions.
Additionally, access control is a means to protect people within an organisation from unauthorised entry. It also stops staff and visitors from gaining access to potentially dangerous areas such as warehouses.
Furthermore, for businesses looking to track and monitor the flow of people around a building, various access control systems fulfil this objective too.
Every organisation strives for a secure premise. To achieve this, an Access Control solution with digital capabilities is essential.
Beyond traditional security, Access Control solutions are influential in helping organisations reinforce zone restrictions and improve on-site security.
Valued by numerous industries, including; Government, Pharmaceutical, Aviation, Education and more, many organisations understand the importance of deploying a solution that can create restricted areas and protect the people, property and assets of each premise.
If your facility is looking for ways to upgrade building security or is hoping to move on from a troublesome key entry system, access control systems are a robust solution.
Offering simple management that is flexible and scalable, access control systems enable you to provide the proper access to the right people and the right areas of your facility at any time. Here are just a few key benefits that access control systems can provide to your facilities.
Benefits Of Modern Access Control
A lock and key are the most straightforward and lowest cost form of access control and remains by far the most popular door security, and its low security and low-tech option.
Keys can be copied on any high street, and locks are vulnerable to picking. Furthermore, when you have many people and a large number of locked doors, key management becomes challenging.
There are many access control systems on the market, with an even more comprehensive selection of features and functions.
At the bottom end of the market, you have basic keypad systems requiring users to enter a PIN and swipe card systems where you swipe a plastic card with a barcode through a reader.
Other solutions include proximity systems, where you present a card, tag or RFID technology to a reader without needing to touch it.
How can an access control system help your business? No matter the size or industry, automated access control can protect employees and let administrators know who accesses the premises.
The most significant benefits of access control systems are:
Reinforced Sone Restrictions
No organisation wants its employees or visitors to have the full accessibility of its facility.
To improve zonal security and to reinforce some restrictions, Access Control solutions can be deployed and configured to set access authorities, limiting access to personnel to only ones that require it.
In traditional security practices, physical keys are used to gain entry to restricted zones.
Unfortunately, in a world full of threats, this security method is not as effective as it once was, with key duplication being a relatively quick and straightforward process.
ID badges, facial recognition and biometric readers are just some available modern Access Control reader options.
These options are much more difficult to duplicate without the correct equipment but are almost impossible to configure without back-office authorisation.
If an event occurs and security wishes to investigate who committed the crime, the Access Control back-office maintains a record of every gateway transaction, allowing security to create a list of suspects that entered and exited the zone where the act occurred.
To further improve on-site visibility, Video Management solutions (CCTV), Vehicle Management solutions and other value-adding integrations can be paired with a modern Access Control solution.
Most modern Access Control solutions are designed to control more than just doors and gateways; they also can be configured for controlling high-speed barriers, turnstiles, motorised fences and parking gates, among other things.
For security, this is an element of Access Control that allows teams to work more efficiently, with less staff being required for monitoring.
Additionally, by integrating Access Control to multiple areas of a facility, security processes are substantially improved as threats, and unwelcome visitors would be required to gain authorisation at more than one entry point, increasing the likelihood of their presence on-site being detected.
It's common for staff and other stakeholders to be operating from multiple sites; Access Control improves accessibility for these individuals by configuring ID badges with multi-site permission.
Not only does this improve mobility for these individuals, but by configuring a single ID badge to provide multiple access permissions, security standards are improved by limiting the number of ID badges in circulation.
Most digital Access Control solutions can be integrated with a wide range of third-party applications and solutions, some of which can be utilised to save energy and costs on-site.
For example, the most sophisticated facility management solutions enable personnel to identify areas of the site that require heating/cooling at a specific time.
By closely monitoring variable overheads such as light and heat, energy costs can be substantially reduced by increasing the accuracy of on-site facility management.
In addition to facility management integrations, many global organisations also integrate with value-adding solutions and applications that are already deployed on-site.
Video Management (CCTV), Vehicle Management, Time and Attendance, Emergency Evacuation Planning and Alarm systems are some of the most popular and common integration options large organisations offer for controlled access of employees, visitors, contractors and other third parties.
Along with modern Access Control solutions being highly configurable, they also can record and store information relating to every gateway transaction from every ID badge.
When an ID badge is scanned, the Access Control solution is prompted to record the time, location and Id badge number.
These details help authorised users identify which employees have access to each area and also identifies the punctuality and productivity of employees.
Simplified Employee Turnover
For organisations with over 100 employees, it can be challenging to maintain an up-to-date list on which employees have access to certain zones and one or more physical keys.
If an employee joins or departs an organisation with a digital Access Control solution, authorised personnel can perform some simple configuration in the back-office to change access authorisation to provide or restrict access or even replace a lost ID badge.
In the current market, most Access Control solutions are SaaS-based and have a back-office that can be accessed through a web browser.
This allows organisations to quickly and easily improve the essential scale from domestic sites to global scalability.
Access Control Systems Are Easy To Manage
Access control systems, in the form of keyless entry and card access systems, are an easy way to manage building security.
Once your access control system is set up, you no longer have to worry about who needs what key to get into which building, labs, or offices.
An access control system provides proper access to each employee in your facility, enabling them to quickly enter the suitable structures and offices without concern of a security breach.
Forget Hassle Associated With Traditional Keys
Critical systems are problematic for adequate security for some reasons. If an employee loses their key, for example, you have to make a new key at least. In many situations, especially high-security facilities, a lost key can mean that all corresponding locks need to be replaced. That means issuing all other employees new keys — all for one misplaced or missing key.
With keyless entry and card access control systems, if someone loses their card, the operator can deactivate that card and assign them a new one.
There’s no need to make a new key or change locks. This eliminates a lot of the hassle typically associated with restricted access areas and makes it easier for you to verify that your facility is always secure.
Set Specific Access Dates And Times
With powerful scheduling features, an access control system allows you to grant access to certain people for specific days and times, as well as for particular doors and groups of entries in a facility.
For example, say your facility is hosting a conference or is inviting stakeholders to visit your facility.
You can grant access to those visitors just for the duration of their visit and just to the conference rooms and offices they’ll need to access during their stay.
With an access control system, you’re able to easily adjust access to accommodate new visitors without affecting the overall security of your facility.
Require Mandatory Credentials For Access
Depending on your industry or facility, there may be certain offices, laboratories, or production areas that require additional security, either because they are high-risk and require specific safety training or because they contain sensitive information.
An access control system allows you to require specific mandatory credentials from anyone attempting to enter that area.
This ensures your facility’s safety and security requirements are met without the hassle of traditional security systems.
Keep Track Of Who Comes And Goes
Another critical benefit of access control systems is keeping track of who is coming and going. In the event of an accident or theft, you’ll be able to see precisely who accessed a specific area during the time of the incident.
Beyond just security measures, this feature is also helpful for collecting data on who enters and exits typical buildings or offices, when, and how often.
Improved Security That Works For You
The overarching benefit of any access control system is that you get all of the security your building needs in a flexible way to work for your company in the long term.
As your company or facility grows, you can add new access cards, update mandatory credentials for specific areas, and change access dates and times as necessary.
As employees leave, are promoted, and change positions, you can easily restrict, add, or manage their access to certain buildings depending on their credentials and current situation.
You no longer have to keep tabs on each key — update each employee’s access as it corresponds with their needs.
Access control systems are a great way to implement another level of security in your facility without disrupting your facility’s flow of daily operations.
If you’re interested in seeing how an access control system could work in your building or campus, get in touch with the team at Vanguard Fire & Security Systems.
Who Uses Access Control Systems?
An access control system simplifies security in many ways. So, anyone with security needs can benefit from an access control system.
Typically, in a rented office space, the landlord controls access to the building itself, and the tenants manage the access control for their areas. There are a variety of industries that can gain from access control systems, such as:
Those in the healthcare industry use access control systems to follow HIPPA regulations for health data confidentiality.
Doctor’s offices, insurance companies and hospitals alike protect patients with access control systems.
Access control systems can protect IT rooms or even equipment racks from unauthorised access, helping keep digital data secure. It can also safeguard physical files, examination rooms and equipment like MRI machines.
If you store chemicals or biomedical waste, access control systems can prevent untrained individuals from getting hurt.
For local and state governments, security is a top priority. Government buildings are subject to homeland security regulations, which may mean restricting entry.
Access control systems can verify employees and limit access to departments, confidential information and more while maintaining public access to other areas.
Any business that accepts and processes credit cards must meet PCI credit card data regulations.
Access control systems can also limit access to IT rooms and servers. They can track who accesses specific data and when further protecting the information.
Schools, especially universities with large campuses, have multi-location security needs. Access control systems make managing entry a breese.
Access control can keep students out of faculty parking lots, unauthorised individuals out of dorm rooms and more.
If you have lab equipment or expensive computers, access control systems can be programmed to ensure only those registered for related courses can access these areas.
In sanctuaries and spiritual centres where all are welcome, balancing security and accessibility can be difficult.
Access control makes it easy, keeping doors open during services and locked at other times. Churches, temples, synagogues and mosques can track employee’s comings and goings.
They can also keep areas like schools, daycare centres, and offices secure while keeping the rest of their facilities open to all.
Small And Medium-sized Businesses
Key cards and access control systems are for more than big corporations with thousands of employees.
Small and medium-sized businesses can reap the benefits of using an access control system, too.
Access control is scalable, so small businesses can find solutions that work for their size and budget.
The right access control security system will be user-friendly so that you can protect your business without a security or technology background.
\What Types Of Systems Are There?
Access control systems can be housed on a cloud server or a local server. You can control access via keypads, card readers or mobile devices. When it comes to setting permissions, you have three options for how you can manage access:
- Role-based access control: In this control structure, all users who have the same role have equal access. For example, in a healthcare lab, all researchers can access a chemical storage room, while administrators cannot. This system can grant access based on the level of privilege, so employees of various seniority only access what they need.
- Discretionary access control: In this model, the business owner controls who has access to each entry point. Each door’s card reader has a list of authorised users, set by the business owner, and these individuals have access to that building or area.
- Mandatory access control: Mandatory access control is the most restrictive. In this case, a policy, software or hardware component restricts access without exception. Required access works for larger organisations where ahead of security, determines the rules that grant access. For example, employees may need to know a password or enter a pin into a keypad to enter a building. This is ideal for companies with lots of specific security needs, such as tech companies. It allows a centralised authority like a security office to decide who can access what areas. It also enforces a standardised security policy across many locations.
Why Do You Need Access Control
There are several benefits to implementing an automated access control system. First and foremost, it allows you to control who can enter your building.
In addition to choosing who can get in the front door, you can also restrict people allowed inside the building from specific areas.
As a business owner, access control allows you to keep tabs on when your staff members arrive and leave each day.
You can also keep track of exactly where they are in the building at any given time when access cards are required to enter different areas.
Controlling where employees can go within your building can also enhance safety when using the system to prevent people from entering potentially dangerous areas.
By restricting access to areas where confidential information is stored, you can also improve security.
Many access control systems rely on cards that can be activated and deactivated at any time. Unlike regular keys, they cannot be easily duplicated and lost, or stolen cards can be instantly deactivated to prevent unauthorised access.
For landlords, automated access control is an invaluable tool for ensuring the security of tenants and their belongings.
By requiring a card to enter the building, you drastically reduce the chance of unwanted individuals entering the property.
Protect Your Business
An access control system is a more practical solution, making it an essential asset to any organisation.
By investing in the latest access control technologies, businesses will benefit from a system that will help protect assets and create a safe environment for employees and visitors.