I completely agree with those who say “Hey, a visitors book is one of the most widely used products in any office reception and it has proven to be of great service for keeping track of office visitors throughout offices worldwide”

It is true. Visitor books are great and that’s why they are also commonly termed as a Manual Visitor Management Tool.

They are convenient, easily capture visitor’s information, ideal for easy access and have proven to be an amazing value to the front desk staff. But “Does a visitors book really do the things it is meant to? If not, is there a similar tool that could perform the same tasks better?” 

I will try to find answers to these questions through this post.

What is a Visitors Book meant to do?

The roles and responsibilities of visitor log books are much more than you and I can think of. I know it’s just a book but this “book” is currently the greatest visitor management tool which is perceived to hold a lot of value while handling visitors. In essence, all the responsibilities of a visitors book can be boiled down into these three categories.

  1. Security
  2. Brand Experience
  3. Insights

Lets see each of these in detail.

1. Security – Contribution towards a secure workplace.

A visitors book has done a pretty good job of managing visitors so far. Capturing details of visitors is of utmost importance when it comes to a creating a safe workplace environment. All relevant entities pertaining to a visitor, such as their name, contact information, purpose of visit, name of their respective hosts, etc, are captured and stored by a book that is kept at your reception desk.

Fantastic. However is this all there is to a fully secured workplace? Allow me to pose three questions that would make you think otherwise.

  1. Is the visitor information (stored by the visitor himself) legit?
  2. Is the information stored in the visitors book safe? Can it be tampered with or worse misused?
  3. What good is a visitors book in case of an emergency?

2. Brand Experience – Improving visitor’s perception of your brand.

Let’s say you have already designed the perfect front office reception. By this i mean you have changed the aesthetics of the entire room, came up with the perfect color scheme and selected the best material for your front desk area to represent your brand. What do you think is the purpose behind doing all this? It’s simple. You are defining your visitor’s perception of your brand.

Studies suggest that first impressions are made within 7 seconds of meeting someone, and the same could be said of your work place. When visitors enter the front doors, their first focal point is the reception desk. If every aspect of the reception desk acts as an extension to your brand experience, it provides a positive reception.

The next time you are at your front desk, check to see if a visitors book is an enhancement or a hindrance to your brand experience?

3. Insights – Visitor tracking and provide actionable visitor insights.

How many times have you heard the receptionist going about asking this question “Is the visitor from company x still here?”

One too many, i’d say. This is because a visitor register rightly focuses on getting guests in through the door successfully letting other concerns such as ensuring the guest leaves, slip by without being addressed. If you are looking to hire a receptionist who loves to follow up on visitors then good luck.

Also, after your visitors leave your office all their names and numbers are just a big blob of information stored away in a book.

Let me ask you this: Would it be easy or difficult to come up with Mr. X’s information who came to your office last week on a Tuesday? What if a hundred people visited your office that day? Would it still be that easy?

The Better Alternative?

A Visitors Register is a great paper-based visitor management system but it comes at a price. This price you would have to pay later when the security, experiences and/or insights are compromised. However, a digital Visitor Management System like Ara addresses all of the above mentioned issues and even takes on additional roles and responsibilities to give visitors the reception they deserve.

Ara secures your office premise by verifying and logging every visitor who walks-in, instantly notifies host and securely stores visitor data on the cloud. She monitors materials carried by visitors, makes your visitors sign an NDA to ensure they don’t disclose any critical information, and even gives you a detailed visitor insights report right at your desk.

Take the Free Trial today and see the difference yourself.