Access control, the method by which entry into specific areas is allowed or restricted, is a critical part of planning the security of an office building.
The old-fashioned key in the lock has served its purpose since time immemorial. But keys can get lost, stolen, and can be easily duplicated. They can also lead to high costs when it becomes necessary to change the locks every time an employee leaves the business. Luckily, with advanced hi -tech office building access control developments nowadays, there are many more efficient options for keeping your space secure and preventing it from being breached by unauthorized personnel.
The most convenient form of access control is an electronic system. This can be used for exterior doors and for interior entrances as well. The benefit of electronic access control is that it gives you so many options, and can be tailor-made to suit the needs of your business. You can permit entrance into certain areas for privileged employees while simultaneously denying access for others. It can safeguard all corners of the building without constant human monitoring. It can allow only certain trusted employees to remain in secured areas after work hours without risking the security of the building, and it can ensure that no one enters at certain times.
Electronic access control systems can involve fingerprint or even facial recognition. More commonly, it involves electronic cards. For many office buildings, the “key” has now turned into the key fob or the “card.” This credit card sized card, or small rounded key fob, is encoded with a specific electronic code that when identified by a card reader affixed on or near the outer part of the door, will allow entry into that room.
There are a number of important components involved in an electronic system. The card is used to carry the electronic code that allows entry into designated areas.
Electric strikes installed in the doors are released when activated by the card.
Card readers can identify the code on the card either by having the card inserted into them or, in the case of proximity readers, by having the card in very close proximity or positioning the card in front of the reader.
Keypads are sometimes used together with or instead of the card reader. In the case of a specific supply closet or area that needs to be secured, or even in a small office building, keypads alone may suffice. The drawback of keypads is that the codes can be easily shared with others. Therefore it is usually advisable to install a keypad and card reader combination. Electric lock hardware is commonly installed at the site of the entryway.
Field panels connect all the combined parts of the system to enable it to run smoothly. Depending on the number of doors that are in the system, there may be more than one field panel necessary.
A server computer keeps track of all of the data for the system and manages the whole process. The benefit of this is that the program can be tailored to the needs of the company, by creating detailed schedules and time slots. The schedules can be changed and adapted as needed, and employees can be added to the database when they are hired and can be deleted from the system when their position is terminated. Additionally, the computer tracks the trails of every individual in the system, keeping a record of all their activities that involved their electronic card, so the data can be reviewed by those in charge to monitor and stay in control of exactly what is going on in the building, and to immediately identify problems in case of improper use of restricted areas.
When setting up these systems in an office building, the security provider will first want to evaluate the needs of the business in order to plan a relevant system. When choosing the ideal plan of access control for the office building they will take into account the financial aspect, as some offices will prefer a more economical solution, and if there is only a small and uncomplicated area to be secured, this can be very reasonable, whereas a bigger business which requires detailed security in multiple locations in the building will require a more extensive and costly system. The provider will consider the number of entrances or exits needing to be controlled, and subsequently the amount of access control panels necessary to connect the different components of the system. They will determine the number of card readers and possibly keypads needed and will decide on where exactly to install them. A location will be determined by the server computer which will be controlling the system and managing the data. The software on the computer will be programmed to manage the users and their schedules. When all the details are in place, access control will be a seamless and convenient process.