Planning an Access Control System

There are many options to consider while planning the purchase of such a system. The best place to start is with the question, “why?”

Reflect on Why Your Business Needs Access Control

What is meant by the question, “why?” It is beneficial for the consultant to have a deep understanding of the goals for the project so that I can make the appropriate suggestions so the system will meet the goals of the customer. This may seem obvious, but many times when I visit with potential client they know, “they need a card access system,” however, in order to get the most value out of the technology we need to go a little deeper. Some examples include: is identification required? Is the focus on loss prevention? Is traffic flow for either people or vehicles (or both) a consideration? Is the focus more on securing the perimeter or the interior of the facility?

How Can Your Business Benefit from Access Control?

We will start with identification. For this example, we’re going to imagine a two-story professional building which houses multiple offices and businesses. There is a gated yard behind the building where businesses in the building park their fleet vehicles.  Two businesses are service companies and dispatch technicians with one starting dispatch from 7am-11pm, 7 days a week. As the owner of the building, you were approached by a tenant as they wanted to add an access control system to their doors. They’ve told you that the dumpster in the yard is always full and they’ve witnessed non-staff/tenants dumping garbage in the dumpster. You decided as a value add to your tenants you would take on the project yourself and provide access control to all tenants.

Determine the Goals of your Access System

As the owner, you would need to consider, “what is the goal?” You decide that the goal is to provide each tenant business with door control for their separate businesses and to control the vehicle gate which provides access to the yard. You also decide that the system will need to have the capability for scheduling (example, no one can access the yard from midnight until 6:59am, 7 days per week), and each business will need to be able to control their own set of credentials (ex. prox cards), schedules, and access points. Ultimately, the main goal is to secure the yard and the exterior of the building. If the tenants want additional door control inside their suites that will be up to them, but it must be accommodated for in the system.

Access Control System Planning

Next step would be the type of credential would you like to use? Proximity cards with a longer read range may be an idea for this site as there will need to be a reader to grant access for vehicles entering the yard. Some proximity systems allow enough of a read range so that the window doesn’t need to be rolled down (think ‘winter’).

There are other examples of credentials which can be used: fobs, mag-stripe, RFID, etc.). Additional questions are who provides the file maintenance for system, property manager or each tenant. You need to decide who has control of the fobs/cards for each business (they’ll be the ones assigning/programming cards) and the schedule for the entire building (ex. hours when the yard gate is open, access to electrical room, etc).

Building Your Complete Security System

Another thing to consider is if you would like your camera security system incorporated into your access control, now or later. Access through the vehicle gate may need to be linked to the access control system. If you wish control on who enters the parking facility, each tenant will require a credential to open the vehicle or side pedestrian gate for access.  This can affect the type of credential chosen for your tenants or a selection of tenants. Some credential options include push buttons (for remote access) combined with proximity or RFID technology for man-door access.

We can provide a single credential that will provide access to all points of entry. An option to consider is a full height turnstile for added security. When thinking about pedestrian controls, always remember to consider whether the access point will require wheelchair, stroller, or limited mobility access (ex. wheelchairs and strollers won’t go through a turnstile).

Trust the Security Experts

Hopefully the short example above will give property owners, who are considering access control, a basic understanding of how to plan for an access control system. There are many options to consider when planning to install access control. Considering these factors will help companies like Time Business perfectly tailor a system for your unique requirements.

Not sure where to begin? Give us a call and our experts can find the solutions that work best for you. 1.888.661.7444

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