You can add and delete users, update access credentials, view reports on entry times, export real-time audit trails, and securely share data throughout your organisation with the click of a button.
Existing infrastructure can be migrated from multiple locations into one centralised system in the cloud. Cloud-based access control enables you to manage access control from anywhere at any time, via an Internet connected account. By migrating to the cloud, you can benefit from streamlined systems and fully scalable software that allows for easy changes as your business grows. Data is always readily available and access control is overall more secure.
Benefits of cloud-based access control for multi-location businesses
Cloud-based access control systems offer an innovative approach to security management for businesses operating in multiple locations. Control, manage, and document access to different premises across any number of locations, without fuss, using existing network infrastructure. Cloud-based access control can benefit your business with:
- Centralised management: The biggest advantage of cloud-based access control for multi-location businesses is the ability to centrally manage your security across multiple locations. Administrators can save time and handle all sites from one central dashboard, allowing for seamless security management, regardless of geographical barriers. Mobile functions allow the sending of mass notifications like emergency alerts or grant and revoke access to all employees and visitors at once, keeping them safe and secure from potentially dangerous areas or equipment.
- Real Time Updates and Monitoring: Cloud solutions offer the advantage of providing real-time updates for staff and visitor tracking, with new user access credentials and updates distributed automatically to all doors. Alongside live occupancy monitoring is real-time fire muster reporting. Cloud access solutions can increase your business safety measures, allowing you to be sure of who is or was on your premises, to ensure immediate awareness of any security issues and enable a quick response to incidents across all sites.
- Reduced Costs: Cloud access control reduces the need, and in turn the cost, of having to install and maintain physical servers at each of your locations. It also allows businesses to save on manpower as fewer security personnel are required to manage the system. With standard on-premise access solutions, you have to pay for feature-rich systems and typically with advanced ones, you have an ongoing yearly update cost and costs per feature required. Once these additional features are bought, they often can’t be removed, but with cloud solutions, it’s possible to add or remove services as they suit your business requirements.
- Scalability: As businesses expand, cloud-based access control systems can be easily scaled to cover new locations, eliminating the need for major hardware installations or overhauls at each site. You can easily onboard people on mass so if certain staff relocate to different locations, a new team is onboarded, or someone leaves, you can instantly turn access on and off remotely as needed.
- Ease of use: Since cloud-based access control systems are on the cloud, they’re incredibly easy to use and manage. You can add and delete users, update access credentials, view reports on entry times, export real-time audit trails, and securely share data throughout your organisation. Having an automated workflow like this allows you to set up your system with pre-defined rules, eliminating human error and reducing manual time-consuming tasks, resulting in optimal business operations. Cloud-based access control offers unprecedented flexibility in almost every aea of operations, granting unrestricted access control to facility managers who don’t have to worry about the digital infrastructure as upgrades and updates are automatically applied.
How cloud-based access control works
Cloud-based access control is software that allows administrators to monitor and edit access information from one centralised system – anywhere at any time, whether on-site or on the go – via an internet-connected device. On-premise hardware devices, like doors, gates and key card readers, remain or are installed, at each location you require access control, and connected to the cloud server. Administrators use this centralised application to set up the access control required. Once authorised, users can access the premises by inputting their credentials – a key card, fob, or mobile app. The device will verify these credentials via the cloud server, allowing or denying access based on the user’s permissions.
Cloud-based systems are flexible, you can change what times certain doors lock, remove access to one-time guests and scale up or down as needed within minutes. It can support you with potentially global growth, processing large numbers of users without having to install server boxes in every building like you would with on-premise access control. If you decide to move or expand to a new location, you can add more devices to your centralised system, avoiding the need to rebuild your security infrastructure every time. Several sites can be overseen and managed from any device with an internet connection – laptop, phone or tablet.
How cloud-based access control records an audit trail for all sites
Another advantage of cloud-based access control is the ability to maintain a comprehensive audit trail for reporting. Every access attempt, whether successful or not, is logged in real-time on the central server. This record includes date, time, location, and the identity of the person attempting access. The audit trail helps monitor employee movement, keeps track of security incidents, and provides crucial data during investigations. All operator-initiated viewings, alterations and deletions made to the access control database are recorded too. These logs can highlight patterns or anomalies and generate reports that will help identify potential security breaches or misuse, ensuring proactive security management.
Setting different security levels for different sites via cloud-based access control
Cloud access control systems can be used to manage site security across multiple locations. With its integrated approach to controlling, monitoring, and managing security, it can enable different security levels to be applied at different sites. Administrators can control who can access which locations, at what times and under what circumstances. This is particularly useful for multi-location businesses where access requirements may vary from one site to another.
Access permissions can be scaled to the needs of the business, whether in the same city or a different country. Permissions can be grouped according to someone’s role or training and location-based restrictions can limit or enable a person’s access to other sites within the network. Administrators can customise their site to their needs and ensure the doors and credentialed users are following the rules set for the specific building.
Site administrators can be designated to look after the access of some or all these sites. By allowing access to specific sites only, local facilities managers and operators can manage access levels and schedules associated with their building, without the risk of interfering with another facility. When all isolated to a specific site, unauthorised users are unable to view other facilities. Users that have access to multiple sites, can easily view similar events or user activity globally. By adding this additional layer of security, peace of mind can be had for organisations managing multiple locations.
Benefits of cloud-based access control compared to individual on-premise servers on every site
Moving to a cloud-based access control system from a traditional server-based system offers several compelling benefits:
- Cost Efficiency: Cloud systems save businesses the cost of purchasing, maintaining, and upgrading servers at each site. By installing and managing less hardware, cloud solutions are the more cost-effective option with ongoing maintenance costs kept to a minimum.
- Improved Security and Reliability: Automatic, regular updates with the latest security measures provide enhanced protection against breaches. If someone leaves or a one-time contractor finishes their work, you can instantly turn access off remotely. Regular data backups and the lack of dedicated on-site servers ensures high availability and reliability, reducing the risk of server downtime and data loss.
- Offsite hosting: Cloud-based solutions allow for off-site hosting, so whether at home or out of the country, you can monitor entry points across one or many locations with complete flexibility. Regardless of which OS or browser you use, with a secure login you can inspect your site and manage hundreds of keys from any Internet-ready device. This is particularly useful if your organisation has multiple locations around the world, you can grant access without needing to step foot on site. The ability to open and secure doors remotely also eliminates the need for on-site staff to gatekeep.
- Scalability: Cloud-based access control allows you to easily scale your business each time you expand to a new location, or your facilities and staff numbers increase. These systems can support you with potentially global growth, processing large numbers of users without having to install server boxes in every building like you would with traditional access control. If you decide to move or expand to a new location, you can add more devices to your centralised system, avoiding the need to rebuild your security infrastructure every time.
- Easy Upgrades and Updates: Upgrades and security updates are easier and faster with cloud systems as they are centrally managed and do not require individual server attention. New features, security measures and other updates are all applied automatically, whilst data and management options can be backed up easily.
Not only does cloud-based access control remove the worry of obsolete systems, constant IT updates and staff training, but it also provides an optimal solution to preserve space for organisations who don’t have the capacity for dedicated server rooms.
Types of businesses cloud-based access control is most useful for
Any organisation that provides services locally or across numerous regional, national, or global sites can benefit from cloud-based access control, it’s especially beneficial for:
- Retail chains: These businesses can monitor and manage access to multiple stores, warehouses, and offices across different locations.
- Hospitality Industry: Hotels and resorts can use these systems to manage access to rooms, facilities, and restricted areas. Gyms can monitor membership access.
- Educational Institutions: Universities and schools with multiple campuses can benefit from centralised access control.
- Healthcare Providers: Hospitals, clinics and healthcare facilities can regulate access to sensitive areas like operating rooms or patient record rooms.
- Corporations: Corporations with multiple offices or facilities can utilise cloud access control to manage employee access and ensure security.
Cloud-based access control is a game-changer for multi-location businesses. It provides superior control, flexibility and security while also delivering cost efficiency and scalability. By embracing this technology, you can safeguard all premises and ensure operations run smoothly and securely.