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Smart Access: Technology that Improves Member Experience

By Lucy Allen
22.07.20 ·

In a time before the Covid-19 pandemic, flexible workspaces were high traffic businesses with a frequent flow of members and guests that come and go. This makes security policies and controls more complex than an average business. This complexity drives the requirement for you as a workspace provider to always be on the lookout for tools and technologies to make your operation friction free and productive for both your staff and your members.

Whilst the current climate has brought about many questions on how things are going to have to change moving forward, ensuring strong access control remains a top priority. Read on to discover the benefits to you and your occupiers of having a Smart Access solution in your flexible workspace environment.

What does Access Control mean in the world of flexible workspaces?

At a high level, access control is a selective restriction of access to spaces and physical locations. It is a method of identifying that users are who they say they are and that they have the appropriate access to floors, offices and meeting rooms. The most common access method is through cards and fobs but newer technologies have now made it possible to gain access from the convenience of a smartphone.

Traditionally, flexible workspaces have run their access control system on physical computers hosted in server farms within their buildings, but a recent introduction of Cloud-based systems allows operators to manage and control access through network connections in real-time. 

Smart Access is much more than door access these days. The lines between home and work have blurred and there’s now an expectation from members to have instant access to services in your space via their smartphone, just like they would with everyday items. Not only does this allow operators to manage and control dynamic access rules in real-time. It also allows members to book and pay for further services with a single tap, offering a frictionless experience.

Similar to smartphone enabled contactless payment for food or travel, Smart Access enables occupiers to tap to access resources from one app e.g. hot desk, video conference services, meeting room etc. If members have to download a separate app for each (service), they simply won’t use them. Having all functionality in one app creates a smart and seamless member experience. The more members appreciate the value of having everything in one place, the more opportunities for you to build more value-added services and easier access to amenities.

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Member Experience and Smartphone Engagement

Benefits of Smart Access to you and your Members

Real-time interactions

Historically, finding an access solution that scales to flex-space requirements was easier said than done. What may seem like a simple process of providing members with instant meeting room or floor access, requires complex rules. Unlike legacy solutions which are limited by the number of access rules, Smart Access can support millions of dynamic rules including immediate meeting room access. When occupiers need instant access to a space or book a last-minute meeting room, Smart Access works in real-time, ensuring a frictionless member experience and supporting members productivity.

Multi-site access

Smart Access works across a providers full portfolio, ensuring consistent and streamlined processes across sites.​ This lets providers grant members access to all relevant sites at any given time. This scalability translates to efficiency gains across sites without an increased workload, keeping both staff and members happy. In addition, operators are able to manage permissions by limiting access control admin to specific staff members, offering complete peace of mind.

Integration with flex-space management software

To make onboarding and offboarding members easy, there are software platforms that automatically match membership status to your access system. This means access is granted and revoked in real time based on membership status. This doesn’t only remove the headache and time of manual input, but the automated process also increases efficiency and productivity. By having all of this information in a single platform, you don’t need to worry about managing multiple vendors or training staff on different systems. With essensys you can onboard a member, provision their IT services and provide access to your sites within a single solution. With Smart Access you have complete control at the touch of a button.

Designed for simple hardware integration

Smart Access set-up could not be simpler as it utilises your existing network infrastructure rather than installing proprietary cabling. This reduces installation and maintenance costs. With some legacy solutions, new hardware and cabling are required which can be limiting for any future upgrades. With Smart Access you don’t need to be locked into a specific supplier because it integrates with multiple access technologies.

Flexibility

As an operator you have flexibility when it comes to providing access options with Smart Access. For instance, if a member forgets their card, they can tap their smartphone for access. If you have a visitor coming, send them a URL to read a QR code for limited time access. Impress members and guests and improve efficiency by enabling access before they even arrive to your space. Smart Access gives both you and your members flexibility, making their experience as seamless as possible.

Managing lost, forgotten and faulty cards can be time-consuming and frustrating for both staff and members. Smart Access encourages smartphone app usage over cards to overcome these frustrations and provide convenience. Unlike cards, you can also unlock valuable insights from data captured from smartphones that can be used to develop personalised offerings for your occupiers. This data is hard to retrieve with card-based access due to members sharing cards, this is far less likely to happen with smartphones. Not only does Smart Access increase security and allow you to see who is exactly in your building at any given time, it also provides business intelligence that can aid future strategic business decisions.

Automatic software updates

A key advantage of cloud-based access control systems is that the servers are hosted off-premise and out of your way. Suppliers manage the servers and release regular software updates, including new features and security updates so you don’t have to waste time maintaining different systems across your locations. This frees you up to focus on the things that matter, your occupiers and business growth.

Improve member experience and drive app engagement

Members don’t want to download multiple apps that take up their precious smartphone storage. App fatigue is not a concern when it comes to Smart Access. Unlike most solutions, Smart Access can be incorporated into your flex-space community app. Everything is in one place, so members don’t have to remember what app does what to be able to do things in your space. Once members get used to single app access it will be an app they use on a daily basis. Smart Access powers a friction free experience by unlocking possibilities with a simple tap. Tap to book, pay and access meeting rooms​, catering, hot desks​, lockers​ and video conferencing services​. Space providers can deploy this friction free member experience across sites and amenities and in so doing drive member’s app engagement.

Take your workspace offering to the next level

Smart Access provides easy, fast and secure entry into your space by streamlining member onboarding and daily operations. You can now automate door access control for your flexible workspace with the essensys Connect platform. Unlike alternative solutions, essensys Smart Access can support millions of dynamic rules including instant meeting room access. Furthermore, access options are flexible and the convenience of a smartphone based solution with easy set-up couldn’t be simpler as it supports your entire space offering, all managed and automated by one platform.

Enable a friction free experience for your members with Smart Access. For further detail click here.

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