Leveraging video security for a safe return to work

February, 25, 2021
2 mins

You know that feeling when you buy something with one idea in mind, and it also ends up being useful in other ways? Say a phone that changes how much you exercise because you also use it to track workouts. Or a beautiful scarf that is now a great mask!  As a consumer, that’s a big deal for me.  I’m finding it equally exciting in my work life when a company does more than they ever imagined with a video security system they already own.

If you’re an HR professional, there’s a surprising way this may impact you. 

As the pandemic drives the workplace's re-invention, HR has taken on new challenges around the safe return to work. While companies realize they must make fundamental changes, the HR function will bear the responsibility for keeping employees, vendors, and visitors safe. And they’ll be charged with meeting ever-changing safety regulations to stay open. 

If, as an HR pro, you feel unprepared, you’re not alone. But rest assured, there is a straightforward and powerful resource at hand—smart video security. By leveraging your organization’s existing video security and access control technology, you can better protect staff, customers, and vendors and help your business remain open. 

Occupancy counting and tracking for HR compliance

How does this work?  Well, the ability to track and manage occupancy levels is the holy grail for re-opening. A video management software like Ava Aware gives you, the HR team, the power to limit the number of people in a building or area at any given time with automated occupancy insight. It provides the ability to track people and objects in real-time and send alerts to HR when people:

  • are gathering in unsafe numbers
  • have not completed a mandatory health survey

Critical insights like these will help your organization better manage people's flow in buildings, common areas, or anywhere on your premises. You can also review the information later to learn how the staff responds to challenges or how visitors or employees are engaging with your policies. 

Social distancing and efficient contact tracing

You can then confidently help the organization make appropriate changes to social distancing procedures as needed.  Some companies extract key data from Aware VMS to digitally display occupancy levels so people entering know when an area is already overcrowded. 

Your company’s security team can also enforce social distancing and efficient contact tracing with:

  • an easy-to-use and powerful video search tool to identify who has been in close proximity with a specific person
  • a map view feature to see where and who is in the camera’s view and quickly spot where people are congregating

Beyond the value to HR, you might be surprised at some of the greater benefits of intelligent video management software.

  1. It provides proactive threat detection by highlighting what’s relevant and alerting operators in real-time, all the time.
  2. There’s no need to rip and replace video security cameras. Existing security cameras or Ava Cameras easily connect to Ava’s machine-learning powered software.
  3. It’s all deployed and managed through the cloud, which relieves security operators of the usual burdens of un-premisses video security systems.

It provides precise, usable operational insights, not just data, for business value beyond physical security and safety. Think operational improvements. For instance, the St. Paul-based car dealership Fury Motors synchronized staff resources. The company also gained an understanding of inventory theft hotspots and high traffic areas to better manage occupancy and shift scheduling. Download the case study to learn more about how Fury Motors ultimately improved its customer service

Even more powerful when integrated into access control

There is one more thing that I find amazing. A video security camera can detect and send an alert when occupancy levels have reached maximum capacity, but on its own, the video system can’t limit access. So it becomes that much more powerful when integrated with the right access control system. Together, Aware and mobile access control leader Openpath enable an organization’s cameras to pick up all available data all the time and send alerts quickly on what matters. The two systems can: 

  • disable doors to prevent additional entrants when maximum occupancy is reached
  • disable employee access credentials when an employee does not complete a daily health survey
  • detect tailgating to identify someone who enters right behind another person, whether to avoid a survey or with more malicious intent
  • detect and immediately alert HR by text or email if people are gathering unsafely
  • identify who has been near a specific person
  • prove safety procedures are in place to auditors, regulators, or management 

With health and safety as a priority, you can prepare for a safe return to work. It starts with a mindset shift and not underestimating the power of video security. Like a Swiss Army knife, intelligent video security can benefit so many aspects of organizational life, not the least of which helps HR ensure the health and safety of your employees, customers, and visitors.