Occupancy Management with Access Control

30 October 2020

EntroWatch Occupancy Management Canteen at Capacity

One of the UK government’s guidelines for making a building COVID-19 secure is to ensure social distancing is maintained by people within a building. Traditionally an access control system would be installed to provide entry and exit to controlled area. EntroWatch takes this further as part of a suite of new features.

Access Control Systems

There are several key features required for an access control system to operate. From a hardware perspective there is a need for door controllers, card readers and keypads and the necessary ironmongery to be attached to controlled doorways (entry and exit). From a software perspective, an access control solution uses a database in which to store users, credentials and permissions. When a credential holder presents their card, pin or even biometric to a reader, the access control system verifies the information held within its database. If verified, access is granted. If not, access is denied.

Occupancy Management

Access control databases therefore hold a relatively large amount of data concerning who is where and when within a building. This is occupancy management data that can be used for a range of purposes including building usage, energy efficiency improvement and even maintenance programmes.

To comply with UK government regulations for COVID-19, the latest version of EntroWatch uses this data and applies room occupancy limits where required. Typical examples include reception areas, lobbies, offices, meeting rooms, laboratories, tool rooms, canteens, cafes, restaurants, gyms and rest areas. The list of examples is not exhaustive and simply provides areas of a building where it can become harder to maintain social distancing if/when overcrowding occurs.

For EntroWatch system administrators, the software displays real-time room occupancy levels, supports ‘one in and one out’ access and can be set to alarm if anyone tries to exceed the occupancy threshold level. The EntroWatch displays are colour-coded as to the how near the room occupancy threshold is.

Social Distancing

There is an obvious health & safety implication if an access-controlled room becomes overpopulated but there are also implications if one of the room users turns out later to test positive for Coronavirus. Should this happen, the Who, Where and When report within EntroWatch can be used as a Contract Tracing report, identifying individuals who may have to self-isolate or who may want to seek testing

There are several benefits to using the latest version EntroWatch for occupancy management. The first is that the software provides an ideal way to implement UK government guidelines in helping to make a building COVID-19 secure. It is far easier for employees to return to their workplace from home working, knowing that measures such as this are in place. The second is that occupancy management helps to a degree, to enforce social distancing and the limiting of people within an access-controlled area or room; reporting when these limits are exceeded or at least entering an ‘amber’ warning state.

Please let us know if you would like a demonstration of the new EntroWatch features. We can easily provide this via Microsoft Teams or Team Viewer.