Solving front desk problems via a visitor management system

Do your visitors require a high level of “hand-holding” from front desk employees? Or can they easily track down the meeting host, make their way through an unfamiliar office, and find the correct meeting room? Think about it. Is it just a front desk reception area design problem? If not, then this just became one front desk problem which suggests lack of “visitor independence” in your office.

Lack of Visitor Independence is just one of the many office reception problems that your front desk team has to face each day which, I believe, can be solved via a VMS in place. A VMS (Visitor Management System) is a user-friendly front desk solution that takes all the hassles out of visitor management for the host, the front desk staff, the building, the security staff, and office visitors. It lets users optimize time and resources by compiling multiple administrative functions into one single solution improving front desk productivity.

For instance, the schedule a meeting feature on a VMS incorporated with instant host notifications feature delivers all the information to the front desk staff, the hosts and visitors, in case a meeting has been scheduled via the system. This can help your team to give your visitors the red carpet experience they deserve.

A little more on both the features mentioned above, here:
Feature 1 – Schedule a Meeting
Feature 2  – Instant Host Notifications

Enough about the system, let’s have a look at the 3 most prevalent front desk problems and try to address it via a VMS.

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Front Desk Problem #1: Bad First Impression of your Office

Imagine this scenario.

Your visitor is in front of the visitor’s book, hurriedly scribbling their name at the end of the long list of names. They have their photo taken and wait as their visitor pass is printed out. Probably they had to wait a bit longer because the host might have forgotten to add them to the day’s front desk visitor list. So they stand and wait while front desk employee calls up to the host.

The meeting host is away from his desk, so all they can do is sit tight until the host can be tracked down. As the minutes’ tick by, your visitors worry about the time cutting into your meeting. If the meeting goes over, they’ll probably have to push back all of your afternoon appointments. This isn’t and shouldn’t be an ideal first impression for any visitor. What if the visitor was a high-profile potential client? Would it make a difference then? First impressions matter and it’s time to make a great first impression.

Solution to Front Desk Problem #1

See how the same scene changes with a VMS in place.

Instead of confronting a paper log, visitors walk up to a touchscreen video screen where they can check-in directly via their smartphone. Here they enter their information, retrieve their visitor pass, and are on their way. With a record of all returning visitors on the cloud, visitors can receive guided instructions to the meeting room. find any other relevant meeting information, such as meeting agenda, and a list of other attendees directly on their phones.

Upon guest check-in, the system automatically notifies the meeting host of the visitor’s arrival and can proceed to the meeting room. This makes visitors feel even more at ease and well informed as they arrive at your office, and creates a great first impression without the need to involve the front desk staff at all. Gone are the days of the confused-looking guest wandering office hallways looking for the correct meeting room. The entire process—from check in to check out—is streamlined, user-friendly, and fast.



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Front Desk Problem #2: Unsecure Office Facility

According to a survey by Traction Guest,  one of the main objectives businesses bought a VMS was Security.

Read more about the survey and how we managed to decipher it here – 3 Main Objectives for Buying a Visitor Management Software; Survey Results Explained.

Most of what is done for the sake of visitor management today is done in the name of security. The information in visitors logbook is neither validated nor secure. This means that the information could very easily be counterfeit since there is no verification system in place. There are also chances of the information getting stolen by the next set of visitors. The information is also hard to go through because of spilled ink blots and illegible handwriting.  Let’s face it, it isn’t very secure.

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Solution to Front Desk Problem #2

A VMS provides an entirely new level of security to you to your office building. The system captures verified and legible visitor information and stores it on the cloud. It’s just as important to know if a guest has left the building, as it is to know that they’ve arrived. Once checked in to the Visitor Management system, a guest can sign-out with a single tap so the host company will know if they are still on premises during an adverse event. Your company can instantly account for everyone present in the office which is a simple solution to front desk problem of an unsecured facility.

Not just that in the case of evacuation, everyone in the office will have access to evacuation directions and instructions to ensure everyone understands how to safely exit the building. Not to mention, a Visitor Management Solution is significantly more accurate than the old-fashioned log. Guest information is collected uniformly and correctly every time which can be easily managed from the system. 

Front Desk Problem #3: Lack of Visitor Independence

In the first paragraph, I spoke about hand-holding visitors until they meet with the hosts. Let’s talk about that for a second. Lack of visitor independence in the office is primarily due to lack of communication and processes in place. Why do visitors walk into the office and head straight towards your front desk? Because, in an unfamiliar office, anyone would need assistance until they get done what they came to achieve. This usually creates a lot of trouble for the front desk employees.

Solution: When the entire check-in experience is automated, visitors don’t need to rely on anyone to help them check in.  If they have come in with a prior meeting scheduled then it is easy to find the meeting room, and get any additional information needed to prepare for the meeting. Visitors are empowered to check themselves in with their smartphones and make their way directly to the meeting location. They don’t need to rely on another being to print out their visitor badge, sign any necessary forms, or explain directions. This frees up time so the front desk staff can focus on more important administrative duties.

And this is just the beginning. Making processes easier and more convenient for everyone involved demonstrates a commitment to employee happiness and raises morale all around. Not to mention, it saves time, resources, and money. With a Visitor Management System, its time to get rid of all your front desk problems and give your office visitors the great experience they deserve.

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