Benefits of keyless door entry systems for businesses

Keeping offices and commercial buildings secure is nothing new. Security has always been a priority in the workplace, whether it’s giving each employee a set of keys, or hiring a security guard at the front door. However, advancements in access control technology are enabling businesses move beyond the outdated lock-and-key methods. In the scope of modern commercial building security, most offices now feature electronic door locks, which allow businesses to upgrade to keyless entry systems. Electronic door entry systems that use keyless locks are a great investment for small and enterprise businesses. There are many benefits to going keyless, including improved security, increased ROI, and a better experience for employees, staff, and visitors.

Commercial keyless door lock technology has been around for a few decades now, so it’s no surprise that most businesses already have a keyless entry system in their offices. However, the advent of IoT-connected devices and rise in cyber crime means a growing list of security threats, and some keyless entry systems could already be inadequate for commercial security. Use this guide as a resource for understanding how keyless entry systems work to safeguard the office, learn the 5 signs that it’s time to upgrade your building keyless entry system, and how the latest technology developments are changing the way businesses approach security.

How keyless entry systems work

In short, keyless access control locks let authorized users unlock a door without needing a physical key. Also known as remote central locking, keyless entry systems use an electronic device to control entry into a building. Instead of a traditional metal key, this type of electronic access control requires users to have a credential that communicates with the keyless access control locks via proximity. Users need to be within a certain distance of the reader to trigger an unlock.

The typical keyless door entry system requires electronic or magnetic door locking mechanisms, a proximity card reader or sensor, and each user needs an authorized credential to authenticate their identity. When somebody wants to unlock the door, rather than digging around for the right key and fumbling with a cumbersome lock, all they have to do is present their keyless credential near the reader. The access control system verifies the credential, and triggers a door unlock once approved.

Installing a keyless entry system depends on the current state of the building. If upgrading from traditional locks, an access control installer will need to wire the office for electronic door locks. If there’s already an electronic door entry system in place, the installer can likely use the existing wiring to upgrade the system. It’s best to choose an access control system like Openpath that uses standard wiring, as it’s backwards compatible with most keyless door locking hardware.

Types of proximity keyless entry for businesses

Because of the growing need for high-quality office building security, there are a lot of keyless entry systems to choose from. The best type of keyless commercial entry system will depend on the size of an organization, the budget for security, and the desired system capabilities. The most common types of commercial access control are proximity key cards, key fobs, mobile credentials, biometrics, or some combination of these.

  • Proximity key cards — A common type of commercial keyless entry system that uses a key card or key fob in place of a traditional key. Proximity cards, also known as prox cards, are a popular choice for many organizations, and can double as an ID badge. These credit card-sized credentials are easy to use and fairly inexpensive. However, as one of the first types of keyless credential created, they aren’t always the most secure. Businesses that want to use key cards for their commercial building should use encrypted smart cards for the best possible security.

  • Key fobs — Similar to key cards, office keyless door locks can use RFID key fobs to unlock the door. Key fobs are convenient because they can be added to a keychain to make them easily accessible for users, and they are usually small. Unlike a key card, a fob won’t have personal information or an ID photo on it, so they have a more generic look.

  • Mobile access control — With this type of keyless entry, your smartphone is your key. App-based access control is quickly increasing in popularity, as it’s more convenient and often more secure than other keyless door entry for businesses. People are less likely to forget or lose their smartphone compared to a key card, and it also means less up-front cost for businesses. Openpath, a leading provider of mobile access control, uses Triple Unlock technology to ensure a secure, reliable unlocking experience. Another benefit of app-based keyless door entry systems is the ability to customize the features and functions to cater to specific security needs.

  • Biometrics — Some businesses choose to use more advanced credentials to identify authorized users. Biometrics can include fingerprint scans, facial recognition, and iris scans. In terms of access control, biometric credentials are often used in addition to a more traditional credential, such as a key card or ID badge, as a form of two-factor authentication. With mobile access control, organizations can leverage the biometrics built into the phone to increase security. For example, users on the Openpath access control system can be required to complete a FaceID scan on their smartphone before unlocking the door via the mobile app.

  • Hybrid keyless door entry systems — Mobile-based access control is great, but some companies still need a keyless door entry system that can also support encrypted key cards, too. In this case, an access control system with flexible credential options like Openpath is a smart choice. Openpath Smart Readers support both the app-based mobile credentials, as well as secure key card and key fob access, all on the same system. Openpath’s hybrid access control model is also backwards-compatible with legacy RFID key cards through RFID supporting door lock readers.

  • Video-enabled keyless entry — Combining proximity keyless entry with video surveillance, a video reader adds visual verification of every access event right at the door. The best video door reader for businesses is one that supports keyless entry with mobile devices as well as high- and low-frequency RFID key fobs and cards. Remote access to the video footage allows security teams to see who’s attempting to enter the space, making it easy to mitigate unauthorized entry, misused credentials, and tailgaters.

Contactless wireless locks

Having one keyless credential for every door in the building is more convenient than having to carry an additional set of keys for closets, offices, and IT rooms. With Schlage® NDEB and LEB wireless door locks from Allegion installed on interior doors, users can unlock using their Openpath mobile credentials, as well as encrypted key cards and fobs. The battery-powered wireless door locks use Bluetooth for reliable keyless entry, and are a cost-effective way to improve security and supplement a complete access control system.

Benefits of keyless entry systems for your business

  • Better security — Metal keys are easy to lose, easy to copy, and simply outdated when it comes to protecting a business. Keyless door entry systems require each user to have a unique credential, so it’s harder for somebody to copy. In addition, many electronic door entry systems use end-to-end encryption to protect user data. The best keyless access control locks don’t store any data at the local level, making it harder for hackers and intruders to obtain the information they’re looking for.

  • Easier to manage — With traditional office locks, every time an employee leaves the company, new keys need to be cut and issued, and every door lock needs to be retooled. This could get expensive quickly for businesses with high turnover. An electronic keyless door lock system can be reconfigured without a full replacement. Proximity key cards still require some management, and people will still need to meet in person to receive new credentials or return old ones. However, with mobile-based keyless entry for offices, it’s much easier to issue new credentials, especially with a cloud-based access control system. With management available online, adding new users (and revoking credentials) is instant and can be done from anywhere, at any time. Plus, you won’t need to order replacement key cards ever again, as employees use their smartphone to unlock the door.

  • Remote access — A cloud-managed keyless entry system also gives you the benefit of remote access. This feature is especially useful for multi-site organizations that need to manage different locations. With remote access on a keyless entry system, an administrator can unlock any door from anywhere; whether to let in an employee after-hours, handle a delivery, or even allow first responders into the building during an emergency. Remote access to the system also allows admins to make adjustments to schedules, permissions, and system users on the fly, without having to set foot on-site. 

  • More data insights — With a traditional key, you can’t tell who opened the door or when. It’s a nightmare for compliance, and nearly impossible to audit. Because keyless entry systems use encrypted communication to authenticate unique credentials, there’s more data at your disposal. Advanced access control systems like Openpath track all entry activity in real-time, and provide detailed reporting. This is great for auditing the system on a regular basis, as well as responding to emergencies or security threats. Access activity data also empowers businesses with behavioral learning insights to improve space management and inform decisions over time.

  • Improved visibility and control — With mobile-optimized custom dashboards, users can monitor and control the keyless entry system from any device, anywhere in the world. Openpath’s custom dashboard widgets, including Entry Controls, User Access, Lockdown Plans, and Activity Feed, can be configured at the site, org, and user level for direct access to the most relevant data and controls for each user, resulting in faster issue response time and a better understanding of security across the entire organization. With more widgets in development, including Event Feed, Live Video Feed, Maps, and Occupancy widgets, custom dashboards improve the effectiveness and security of a keyless door entry system at every level.

  • Future-proofing — Keyless entry for businesses is more than just a security feature. Mobile, cloud-based systems are more adaptable, giving organizations greater flexibility to meet ever-changing business needs. Electronic door entry systems are easier to update with the latest security technology and software, and are easier to scale up or back than traditional office door locks. With better technology, commercial entry systems help future-proof the workplace.

Keyless entry systems for businesses offer many advantages over physical keys beyond the simple convenience of not having to deal with a key to open the door. Consider the following advantages to keyless access control when comparing office and building security solutions.

How keyless door locks make businesses safer

Keyless entry systems are an important investment for any industry, regardless of how small or how big the enterprise is. Smart access control systems do more than just keep unauthorized people out; they also can improve the overall safety of the entire building.

Keyless access control locks enable a touchless entry experience in commercial spaces. Being able to unlock the door without having to touch anything eliminates one possible way for germs to spread. With contactless features like Openpath’s Wave to Unlock, users simply wave their hand or phone in front of the reader for keyless entry into the office. Connect Openpath’s electronic door entry system with automatic door opener hardware to create 100% touchless office entry, and make the workplace ADA compliant.

With more workplaces moving to decreased occupancy and “work from anywhere” models to accommodate social distancing, remote management is an essential tool in keeping the office safe. Keyless entry systems that are managed in the cloud help businesses keep office occupancy below capacity. Flexible scheduling and staggered work shifts can be adjusted on the fly in a remotely accessed dashboard. With Openpath, businesses can track the number of people credentialing in through the keyless access control system and automatically enforce social distancing.

5 signs your keyless entry system needs updating

Even if you have a keyless entry system for business installed in your commercial building, it may not be providing you with the security and features you need. Before ripping and replacing your entire office or commercial door entry system with a keyless access system, check for these 5 signs that it’s time for an upgrade.

1. Your staff spends too much time managing your security.

Managing a keyless entry system for business might be draining your resources. A common complaint about keyless door entry systems for business is that staff are constantly replacing lost credentials for your office keyless entry system, and spending hours setting up new permissions and issuing guest badges. With a mobile-based system for keyless entry, commercial buildings eliminate the need for physical credentials, which instantly reduces overhead. With Openpath keyless entry for office buildings, setting up new users and adjusting permissions is efficient, with an easy-to-navigate dashboard and fully remote access to the entire system. Plus, Openpath supports sending Guest Passes via text or email, eliminating the need for physical badges for visitors to use the building keyless entry system.

2. You don’t have quick access to entry activity. 

If you can’t easily check who accessed the building and when, it’s time to update your building keyless entry system. Not all commercial electronic door entry systems have the capability to provide real-time access data, and some keyless access systems require you to be onsite in order to check the activity reports. However, this is essential to office security. The best keyless entry system for commercial buildings will track different types of entry, and provide detailed information such as which door they unlocked, which type of credential was used, and whether the door was left ajar, forced open, or failed to unlock. Openpath’s commercial building keyless entry system also supports automatic alerts, so that the right people are notified of any security concerns as they are happening. Being able to triage security issues in real time is a sign of a good commercial door keyless entry system, and it helps keep your office safer and more secure.

3. Your current system doesn't support the integrations you need.

Being able to connect a keyless entry system for commercial buildings to other systems makes the property safer, more efficient, and can greatly improve ROI. This is especially important when migrating to remote management. The keyless entry commercial buildings will benefit the most from run on open architecture, allowing for limitless integrations with user directory tools, video surveillance systems, building management platforms, and more. If your commercial door keyless entry system only integrates with a few select partners, you may be limited in your ability to scale and update your system as business needs change. It’s important to remember that while you may be happy with the current integrations you have, truly future-proof keyless door entry systems for business are designed to adapt at any time. Plus, integrations streamline operations by automating day-to-day processes, making your business more agile and sustainable.

4. You can’t access your system remotely.

One of the key benefits of a keyless office entry system is that employee, staff, and guest access can all be managed and controlled from anywhere and automatically. Your building keyless entry system should also be convenient to manage. Many legacy commercial keyless entry systems still run on local servers, and require onsite staff and expensive on-premise maintenance. Having remote access to your building keyless entry system not only makes managing security more efficient, it also reduces costs over time.

5. You’re managing separate commercial keyless entry systems for each of your locations.

For organizations with multiple buildings, sites, and locations, a cloud-based commercial door entry system is a smart investment. Many on-premise commercial electronic door entry systems will require onsite maintenance at each location for every software update. Many businesses have on-premise security teams to manage their keyless entry systems at each location, or have teams that have to travel between buildings. With Openpath’s keyless entry for office buildings, every location is managed from a single dashboard, centralizing security operations for more efficient management across entire enterprises. Often, the concern with updating is that an existing commercial door entry system will have to be ripped out and replaced. However, you can retain your initial investment with an office keyless entry system like Openpath that’s backwards compatible with most existing hardware.

Upgrade your office door entry system with Openpath access control

When choosing the best keyless entry system for your space, look for providers that combine the convenience of going keyless with the highest levels of security available. Openpath’s cloud-based, mobile access control system offers a flexible, scalable security solution that’s customizable for any organization. Easy-to-install keyless door locks for office spaces support mobile credentials, key cards, fobs, and Cloud Key credentials, and are backwards compatible with legacy access control systems. The Openpath keyless door entry systems for business can be configured for office door locks, parking garages, turnstiles, and elevators.

The open platform also gives businesses the ability to connect limitless integrations for a powerful, holistic security posture. By integrating keyless entry systems with tools like identity management, video surveillance and alarm systems, organizations can improve safety and efficiency across all their locations.

Ready to upgrade your commercial keyless entry system? Talk to an access control specialist about your needs, and to see how Openpath keyless entry systems can work for you.

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