Automate and enforce capacity tracking

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Automating and enforcing occupancy management thresholds

Keeping people safe without sacrificing security is a top priority for all business and organizations. New guidelines on limiting the number of people that can gather in an area at a given time presents a unique challenge in the return to work landscape, with organizations now reconfiguring their spaces to allow for physical distancing, and ensuring all staff, visitors and employees adhere to the new protocols. Openpath allows you to enforce occupancy tracking limits for your workspace. Below we will outline the various methods that can be applied to combine Openpath’s access control technology with best-of-breed occupancy management solutions to track, manage and enforce capacity limits for any space.

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The Challenges of Occupancy Management

From retail shops, to break rooms and conference spaces, to visitor lounges, every organization is challenged with reducing liability and enforcing new occupancy thresholds. While putting up signage is an inexpensive way to notify people of a new capacity threshold, it’s often ignored and therefore ineffective. Stationing additional staff outside doors to count entries and control crowds one way to track capacity, but it is inefficient and often expensive, especially if you have multiple entries into a space. Not to mention, adding staff can put more people at risk. 

Implementing technology that combines access control with occupancy management is a smart, cost-effective way to enforce capacity thresholds, while still keeping your organization safe and secure. When choosing an occupancy tracker system, you’ll want the ability to change or adjust the threshold of your occupancy counter as needed, easily add or remove credentials at any given time, and systems that mitigate tailgating. 

With real-time access tracking and audit trails, Openpath’s cloud-based architecture allows organizations to easily manage their space remotely, as well as the option to integrate with occupancy sensors, capacity counters, and more software for a more robust occupancy tracking solution.

Option 1: Track occupancy with Openpath Premium

By using entry and exit readers, Openpath can track how many individuals are inside a given space (zone). This method automates occupancy tracking by denying new users once a set occupancy threshold is reached for that zone. After people leave that space and the number of users drops below threshold, then new users can enter that space. Admins can easily view the real-time capacity of any zone using the Occupancy Widget in the Activity Dashboard on the Openpath portal. This occupancy counter feature can be deployed in alert mode, in which the admin receives a notification once the threshold is exceeded, or in enforcement mode, where the readers automatically deny new entries until the capacity falls below the set threshold. This occupancy tracker feature is very helpful to track the number of cars in a parking lot, or to count the users in a cafeteria, gym, or any space that requires occupancy management.

This occupancy tracking feature is built in and no integration is necessary.


What is needed: 

  • Openpath Access Control Platform

  • Openpath Premium Software Package

Option 2: Track occupancy with Openpath’s Bluetooth Capabilities

Openpath’s unique Bluetooth capabilities give better insight into who is occupying your office space and for how long, in addition to tracking entry events. By using smartphones’ built-in BLE beacons that broadcast their identifiers to nearby devices, Openpath can track users’ mobile credentials as long as they’re in range of Openpath Smart Readers. You can run reports on how many users are in the office at any given time, or filter by particular Zones or Entries. This method is especially useful for an office that may leave its doors unlocked during the day and doesn’t receive unlock requests with which to track occupancy. This solution works best for smaller offices and organizations, as the Openpath Smart Readers act as occupancy sensors, so you’ll need enough readers installed throughout the space to ensure mobile credentials are within proximity for accurate occupancy tracking via Bluetooth.


What is needed:

  • Openpath Access Control Platform

  • Openpath Mobile App installed on phones with Bluetooth enabled

Option 3: Limit occupancy with alternating schedules

Another way to limit the amount of people in an office building is to implement alternating schedules, which doesn’t require installing occupancy counters or using any additional occupancy tracking software. For example, have Group A in the office Mondays and Wednesdays and Group B in the office Tuesdays and Thursdays, and alternate the groups on Fridays. Automate and enforce the new schedules with Openpath by simply creating corresponding User Schedules in the Control Center, which will only allow access for each group on their assigned days. 


What is needed:

  • Openpath Access Control Platform

  • Two or more user schedules

Option 4: Connect Openpath to capacity counters

People counters can help tell you how many people are entering and exiting your space, in real-time. Openpath’s integrations with capacity counters let you anonymously track occupancy while also being alerted of tailgating incidents. Use Openpath’s Rules Engine or create custom outbound webhooks to connect Openpath’s user and entry data to the occupancy management platform, and receive automated notifications when the occupancy tracker detects that more people entered a space than credentialed in. You can also revoke access for certain groups and spaces to limit the number of people in an office building or conference room. 


A bespoke integration with occupancy counters also allows you to set capacity limits on Openpath readers. Once the occupancy counter detects that the set occupancy threshold has been reached by users credentialing in, the readers will automatically deny any additional users until someone exits the space.

What is needed:

  • Openpath Access Control Platform

  • Occupancy sensors installed over entry

  • Integration with occupancy management system

Option 5: Mitigate tailgating with VMS integration

Add another layer of security to your capacity tracking by implementing video management software alongside your access control system. For example, Openpath’s integration with a video surveillance system lets you tie Openpath entries and users to video footage, offering visual insight into tailgating incidents and other entry events to help make your occupancy tracking more efficient.


What is needed:

  • Openpath Access Control Platform

  • Video Management Software

  • Cameras installed with entries in frame

Additional partner integrations

VergeSense

Pair Openpath access control systems with VergeSense’s space management tools and occupancy sensors that measure the physical distance between employees. Determine and set utilization rates for every space, track real-time occupancy of individual rooms, and set up occupancy alerts when a space exceeds capacity limits.

Density 

Anonymously track and enforce occupancy with Density Safe occupancy sensors, with scalable solutions for any size business. Set capacity limits on any space, view real-time occupancy tracker data and analytics, minimize tailgating incidents, and receive notifications when your space exceeds a safe capacity.

Camio 

Video monitoring software from Camio lets you associate Openpath entries and users to real-time video footage to help companies detect and mitigate hotspots for social distancing and tailgating incidents, with detailed audit trails and analytics tools.

Kognition

Kognition’s facial recognition AI and movement trackers help organizations identify when there are too many people in a given location. When integrated with Openpath’s mobile credentials, administrators can create access groups based on advanced location data to adhere to social distancing.

Livly

Amenity management tools from Livly give property managers the ability to track and monitor amenity usage, limit capacity, and create bookable appointments that can all be connected to users’ Openpath credentials for added security.

Vaion, an Ava company

Video security from Vaion lets you set and manage occupancy thresholds for every room in your system. When connected with Openpath access control, you can trigger doors to temporarily lock once the room reaches the occupancy threshold, which won't allow anyone else to enter until the capacity is reduced.

Conclusion

One of the biggest challenges with implementing a social distancing policy is the ability to enforce it. Upgrading your access control system to a platform that allows occupancy tracking is quick and efficient with Openpath’s convenient wiring architecture and many configuration options, including the all-in-one Single Door Controller that’s perfect for securing one or two entries. With occupancy counters, sensors and management tools that help track and count people, give you access to real-time data, and mitigate tailgating events, your organization can more effectively comply with social distancing guidelines and automate enforcement for occupancy tracking and capacity limits

Additional resources

Hands-free access

Enforce wellness verification

Temperature screening integrations

Contactless elevator integrations

COVID-19 Features

COVID-19 Office Safety Guide

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