The first part of this series covered the logistical considerations that are driving property managers to retire their on-premise access control software and adopt the cloud-based approach we’re helping to popularize. Here, we’ll focus on the other factor behind the trend: functionality. Sequr’s service provides a number of features that are proving useful for reducing day-to-day work.
A central hub
All the doors managed by an access-as-a-service(AaaS) platform connect to the provider’s infrastructure while settings, permissions and other accompanying data are stored there as well. As a result, property managers can handle everything in one place. It’s a major improvement compared to the many buildings where locks still need to be updated individually when someone loses their key card.
The main advantage of centralizing operations is that it saves time, which in practice means fewer menus to click through. When a user logs into Sequr, they see all the properties that are under their responsibility and can change the settings of a door regardless of where it’s located. From there, they have the option to organize doors into groups that can be updated as one. The same goes for managing key card holders who have similar visiting schedules. The few seconds that this setup saves here and there tend to add up on properties with a lot of foot traffic.
The second item on the list is the fact that a modern cloud service can take advantage of technologies which don’t easily mesh with traditional on-premise software. This includes first and foremost mobile devices. Sequr enables property managers to access the access control portal through an app when they’re away from their desktop, while users can employ their handsets to unlock doors.
The latter feature eliminates the need for every visitor to carry around a key card or a fob, which saves a few seconds every time they pass a door. And more importantly, it provides better security. Access credentials stored in an encrypted form on a smartphone can’t be duplicated like a physical pass and the device itself is much less likely to be shared by the owner, at least if they’re keen on their privacy.
Supporting users’ mobile devices is a priority because a cloud service, like any other piece of technology, needs to fit into the environment where it’s used if it is to work well. For the same reason, many of our users connect the Sequr portal with the property management software that supports day-to-day operations on their properties. The integration removes the need to manually synchronize records and avoids the conflicts that can arise when data entry is handled manually.
In the same spirit, we recently added the ability to access Sequr’s administrative controls from Slack. Administrative staff can open a door from the chat interface when a user asks to enter a building and receive alerts about important events like blocked entry attempts. These integrations and the other conveniences that are available in the cloud eliminate many of the chores that have historically bogged down property managers’ work.
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