Date: 21/12/2022

Access Control: Choosing the Best System

Choosing the best access control system for your business

To choose the most appropriate access control system for your business, it’s crucial to take into account your specific needs. Since each business is distinct, there is no universal solution that fits all. Thus, it’s essential to opt for an access control system that caters to your business’s requirements, rather than copying the one used by a neighbouring business.

To assist you in selecting the ideal security system for your business, here are the steps to follow.

Decide on Your security needs

To initiate the selection procedure for the most appropriate Access Control System, the first step is to determine your specific security needs. Assess your security objectives. Do you only need to prevent unauthorised access through the rear entrance, or do you require a more intricate system to verify visitors at multiple entrances and keep track of security records?

Create a comprehensive list of all the potential threats to your business, both internal and external, as well as the assets you wish to safeguard. This will serve as your access control inventory. When it’s time to select the ideal system, you’ll be able to explore the available access control solutions and choose the one that precisely matches your requirements. Our facility manager’s checklist can aid in simplifying this process.

Choose a system that can accommodate the expansion of your business. If you anticipate future growth, ensure that your system is capable of handling it. Otherwise, you may have to repeat the entire selection process. Additionally, you may find this guide on How to Choose an Intercom System helpful.

Choose Your entry devices

After identifying your security objectives, the next step is to select the appropriate entry devices. Entry devices refer to the physical equipment that keeps your entry points secured until the correct credentials are provided.

There are numerous entry devices available, each with distinct functions. Here are some of the most common ones:

  • Keypad – requires users to enter a numerical PIN to gain access
  • Card Reader – users swipe a magnetic access card for entry, such as HID technology
  • Proximity Reader – similar to a card reader but doesn’t require swiping. Users simply touch their credentials (such as a card, fob, or smartphone) to the reader for access
  • Biometric Scanner – scans a user’s fingerprints or face for verification
  • Bluetooth Enabled Smartphones – a contactless and frictionless method of access control, where users use their smartphones to gain entry
  • Touchless Request to Exit (RTE) Buttons – utilise infrared technology to open doors without physical contact

When selecting the entry devices for your business, it’s essential to strike a balance between ease of management and the desired level of security. This should also be taken into account when developing a cybersecurity protection strategy.

Integration with other security systems

If you already have an alarm system, commercial CCTV surveillance cameras, or a Comelit Video Entry door system, it’s advisable to select an access control system that can integrate with your existing security measures, such as Paxton.  A single, integrated system is much easier to manage compared to multiple disconnected systems, especially for small businesses with limited time and staff.

Even if you don’t have CCTV installed currently, it’s worth considering investing in it later. Make sure that your access control system is compatible with other systems to ensure seamless integration for potential future use.

Consider Your current IT infrastructure

When installing an access control system, data management is an important consideration. All user rights and security records need to be stored somewhere. If you have a robust IT network in place, an on-premises system may be the best option as it gives you more control over its management.

For businesses that lack resources or expertise to handle in-house systems, there are many options available for a cloud-based access control system. With this system, all your data is stored on remote servers and managed by a professional cybersecurity firm. You can access and manage your system from any device with an internet connection. Cloud-based CCTV solutions are also available.  Cloud-based systems offer unparalleled convenience, making them ideal for businesses without the resources or expertise to handle technical maintenance.

If you’re interested in learning more about access control systems for your business, contact our experts today. Our team will be happy to provide free advice and a complimentary estimate based on your needs.