For a few months, it was as though the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, had brought the world to a screeching halt. Businesses closed their doors and people worked from home to help flatten the curve and avoid overwhelming the nation’s hospital systems. As you begin the process of reopening your business, things will look a little different than they did before. The CDC has issued an extensive list of guidelines designed to help companies move through the reopening process.
These changes will span beyond the way you do business; many companies are finding the need to update and enhance their security protocols for the safety of their staff, clients, and visitors. How do you keep surfaces like entryways sanitized when you have a large amount of traffic moving through them? On that same note, how do you keep track of that traffic in order to do things like contact tracing? Is there a way to prevent people with obvious COVID symptoms from entering the building?
An evolved and up-to-date commercial security system can assist with all of this – offering huge peace of mind as well as helping keep everyone safe and healthy. Here are the security factors you should consider when reopening your business.
4 Things to Consider When Reopening Your Business in a COVID-19 World
Enhancing Access Control Systems in a COVID-19 World
One of the top recommendations for homes and businesses during the coronavirus pandemic has been to sanitize high-touch surfaces. This includes objects such as light switches, doorknobs/ handles, and for businesses, keypads like the ones frequently used to manage visitor entry. Keeping the latter items sanitized with a constant flow of traffic is impossible; even if you have staff disinfecting door handles and keypads regularly, it only takes a single touch from a person carrying the virus on their hands to spread it to those who proceed immediately after them.
When reopening your business and revamping security, it’s a good idea to look into enhancing access control systems. Many businesses are moving to automatic doors that eliminate the necessity of grabbing a door handle. For entryways or areas that need to be secured, biometric access control systems offer a convenient and touch-free way to allow in authorized personnel or visitors.
Because biometric access control devices operate by processing an individual’s physical characteristics (fingerprints, voice patterns, or through a retinal scan), this eliminates the need for punching in numbers on a keypad. It also prevents lines and backups at entry while people search their purses and pockets for key cards or fobs. Retinal scans and voice recognition systems eliminate the need for touch entirely.
Businesses that have made the switch find that enhancing access control systems does more than keep things germ-free; they’re also more secure because they eliminate the use of numeric codes and physical cards/fobs that can be lost, stolen, or lent out to others.
Updating Visitor Management Software in a COVID-19 World
Reopening your business after the coronavirus pandemic requires a high-tech business security system capable of managing many different layers of information. In addition to upgrading your access control, updating visitor management software is an essential step as we move through these unusual times.
Having people moving in and out of your business may already feel a bit chaotic at the best of times; adding a pandemic to the mix can make things feel even more stressful. Updating visitor management software can streamline the process.
This kind of software has multiple layers of benefit for you and your visitors. For many businesses, it can eliminate the need for face-to-face interaction upon customer or visitor check-in. Instead, a digital receptionist can walk people through providing all of the information necessary to check-in for an appointment or to enter the premises.
In addition, visitor management software offers the necessary protection for the COVID-19 era. Visitor questionnaires can be customized to include information about COVID symptoms, as well as exposure to those who have a confirmed case of the virus. Information gathered during the check-in process also creates a database of visitors, as well as days and times they are on the premises, that can be used for contact tracing and notification purposes should another visitor or a staff member later test positive for COVID-19.
Investing in Alarm Verification in a COVID-19 World
The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted a wide variety of security needs for businesses; among those are the need for investing in alarm verification. During the earlier days of the pandemic when more places were shuttered, some areas experienced a problem with burglaries of closed businesses. For any business – opened or closed – using alarm verification technologies puts them at a lower risk, as trained monitoring personnel are able to quickly verify whether an alarm signal is a false alarm or an actual burglary in progress in order to send police if the situation demands it.
The past few months have also been trying ones in terms of staffing levels in police departments across the country. From having members who are out sick – often for weeks at a time – to the increased need to monitor closed businesses, police staff is already strained. False alarms simply increase the stress, making it less likely that there will be officers available to respond in a timely manner when crime really does occur.
One way many businesses are upgrading and investing in alarm verification is by tying their surveillance cameras into their security systems. These multi-tiered systems – especially when they utilize threat detection technology that monitors for audio warnings such as shouts or gunshots – give monitoring personnel and police a greater presence than ever before.
Installing Human Temperature Detection Devices in a COVID-19 World
Monitoring staff, customers, and visitors for active cases of COVID-19 is a multi-tiered process. When reopening your business, you’ll likely need to employ a wide variety of strategies in order to keep everyone safe and healthy. Questionnaires and contact tracing are helpful for identifying people who are aware they are exhibiting symptoms as well as getting in touch with anyone who may have had contact with a confirmed case while on your property. Adding human temperature detection devices to your security system can sound the alarm about anyone stepping through your doors with abnormally high body temperature.
Human temperature detection devices work well because they allow your business to monitor a large number of visitors without requiring people to stand in line and have their temperatures taken by a staff member. This keeps everyone safe and socially distant.
These systems send out an immediate alarm should an abnormal body temperature be detected. They can be customized to sound an audio alarm or to send a sound-free alert to nearby monitors being manned by an employee. They can also be programmed to send out email or text alerts to specific management in the organization.
Reopening your business in the COVID-19 world can be a definite relief, especially if you’ve spent the past few months closed. As exciting as it may be to welcome staff and customers back through your doors, it can also be a process that’s fraught with stress and questions.
Working with your commercial security provider to upgrade your security system is one of many steps you can take to keep everyone safer as we all move forward together. From touch-free access control and entry, more secure alarm verification, and visitor management and temperature-taking technology that compiles information and monitors temperatures from a safe distance, your security system is an important tool for reopening in a safe and responsible way.
At ProTech Security, we have a strong history of experience, innovation, and customer service. The ProTech Security Advantage is more than 35 years of service in Northeast Ohio and a strong commitment to providing quality, cost-effective protection for homes, businesses, educational institutions, and government facilities. To see what ProTech Security can do for you, contact us today.