It’s not uncommon for school principals to conduct interviews from their office for open teaching positions at a school. As each teacher signs in using a paper log book, they’re able to see every previous candidate who may be being interviewed for that position. It’s also a sneaky way for competing education vendors visiting the Board office who are visiting the school to see who else may be competing on contracts.. This goes against many privacy regulations such as the Freedom of Information and Privacy Protection Act employed by all ten of Canada’s provinces. Or, Europe’s the General Data Protection Regulations. A traditional visitor log also lacks redundancy in the event of a flood or fire – relying on a person inside the organization to remove the book in order to account for those who may still be in the building. This poses additional risk to visitors or contractors who may be in the school given they’re only accounted for in a single log that requires physical access. The only way to understand which parents or contractors may have been in the building is to physically look at the book which means every limited accessibility. Imagine an electrician contracting on behalf of the school is convicted of child predatory behaviour. The only way to understand which schools or other facilities that contractor had access to is to ask each school or facility to manually check their log book. It can’t be searched centrally across multiple locations and it requires a person to manually flip through the book page by page. And finally, it’s a very slow entry method. Visitors who frequently access one or more facilities must manually write their name, phone number, email address, who they’re there to see, sign in date and time, and sign out date and time.
Unfortunately, almost all vendors who design digital visitor management systems develop their business model around corporations, not schools. As such, they use location-based pricing which tends to drive up the cost for schools. This is particularly challenging because schools don’t actually receive a large number of visitors but school boards often have many physical locations requiring a visitor log book. Student class attendance records are sufficient for the largest portion of guest traffic in and out of a school. This makes existing systems extremely cost prohibitive with only limited benefits. Moreover, those systems don’t account for rapid sign in of regular visitors including employees and staff contractors. If they do, they require expensive RFID swipe cards and hardware for reading the devices. The costs listed on most visitor management systems also don’t account for the hardware cost to set up a digital sign in system. They generally require a modern iPad or Android tablet along with a physical security bracket to ensure the device isn’t stolen or vandalized and this adds significant initial one-time costs. All of these reasons are why we collaborated with a half-dozen school boards in the design of Guestbook, the only digital visitor management system that was designed specifically and exclusively for school boards. With you mind, our solution is extremely costIt’s cost effective and meets the enterprise demands of school boards.