With so many people – students, staff, and visitors – traversing school campuses daily it’s important to keep on track of who’s who and, importantly, who’s on site. Ian Forster, sales director at Adare SEC, explores the merits of visitor management software – and why your school should consider it
Education providers have a statutory duty of care to safeguard learners and protect staff from harm, abuse or nuisance during school hours and extracurricular activities. Keeping track of who comes and goes can be difficult, particularly if you’re a large institution with hundreds of pupils, staff and frequent visitors.
Having a quality school visitor management system in place can alleviate safeguarding fears, record pupils that are late and keep facilities organised and on-track. Having such systems available, particularly when it comes to events or open evenings, also allows schools to maintain a record of a high level of visitors whom are easily identifiable whilst on-site.
Not every school is the same, so each will need systems in place to match their specific requirements. For example, some might need a system which has the capacity to record DBS checks which are stored digitally on a database alongside visitor records for as long as is required, whereas others might need them to help evaluate and improve pupil attendance.
Whatever the reason, if you are considering investing in a school visitor management system, here’s a checklist to ensure you pick the right software for your school:
Pupil safety is a primary concern for schools. Using a system that can store information either locally on the organisation’s servers or securely over the internet means that repeat visitors can be quickly, and efficiently, signed-in via a user-friendly touch screen application at any site without the need to take their details again – saving time and resources.
Additional information, such as a signature and photograph, can also be collected digitally and stored securely on the system to further enhance security.
As well as safeguarding, it’s crucial for your software management system to identify patterns in pupil lateness so corrective action can be taken to improve pupil punctuality and attendance.
Such software needs to be able to record reasons for pupil lateness in a central database and demonstrates to Ofsted a proactive approach for tackling repeated lateness. More sophisticated systems will also monitor staff lateness.
With this kind of software, you can also pre-book visitor appointments to help reduce waiting times and ensure efficient visitor processing. For this, you need a system which keeps a record of DBS (CRB) checks to be stored against visitor profiles for increased security.
Do you need a central record of staff time and attendance as well as reasons for any early or late arrivals? If so, it’s worth investing in a software management system to keep track and have records which can be exported in a convenient spreadsheet.
You can then use such records as a list for emergencies and double-up as a fire evacuation list to be sent or printed to key personnel.
If you’re looking for school Visitor Management software, you need to shop around to make sure you find the one that best fits your needs.