Coronavirus Return to Work Guidelines and Checklist

The COVID-19 pandemic paused life as we know it over one year ago. Many workers and students found themselves in the office or classroom one day, and then scrambling to find a suitable space at home the next. Now, as many stay-at-home orders begin to expire, federal, state, and local governments are implementing plans to reopen businesses. Many businesses are also deciding when is the right time to bring staff back to work, and it is critical to have detailed strategies and protocols in place before bringing staff back to the office.
One tool that helps to integrate, facilitate, and organize these individual devices into a coherent reopening strategy is a Visitor Management System (VMS).

1. Contactless Kiosk Registration
A Visitor Management System offers many advantages over the traditional registration and screening procedure that occur on-premises. One major advantage is the ability to process a Visitor without contact with the use of user friendly kiosk screens. This contactless process minimizes person-to-person contact and offers an efficient way to register, confirm, and track Visitors throughout the facility. In addition to facilitating entry rules and regulations, some Visitor Management Systems allow for pre-entry health screening surveys to be incorporated into the kiosk workflow giving you the ability to screen Visitors who come in on-site.

2. Use Mobile Technology
Social distancing and touchless technology are now much more than buzzwords, they are proven virus mitigation strategies. Mobile and wireless products are integral to enacting the reopening guidelines by allowing contactless entry to buildings, making it easy to register, save credentials, and to wirelessly print credentials. Visitor Management Systems support a line of mobile and wireless solutions that extends Visitor Management tasks beyond the front desk or the lobby. VMS mobile technologies allow wireless printing of Visitor badges, scan in/out of Visitors using a wireless barcode scanner or even have a floating reception workstation with the use of a wireless tablet.

3. Pre-Register Visitors
A key strategy to help ensure the health of everyone in a facility is to pre-register Visitors to minimize contact with lobby personnel. A VMS with a built-in pre-registration function allows the majority of the registration process to be completed without the risk of face to face interaction. Key things like Visitor name, email, phone number, Host information and destination can all be pre-entered into a VMS to allow for minimal contact and expedite the admittance process. Once Visitors are pre-registered an email notification can be sent to Visitors with instructions for when they arrive, parking information, directions, etc. That email can also contain a barcode or QR code to streamline the process further when they arrive at reception. This functionality takes the burden off of lobby personnel, allowing for minimal contact, and quickens the admittance process.

4. Administer Pre-entry Health Screening – Employees
An Employee pre-entry health survey module allows for easy administration of an electronic daily COVID-19 screening questionnaire to all Employees. By having Employees state that they are not experiencing COVID symptoms and have not been in contact with anyone with COVID, you can ensure that you are meeting state mandates while keeping everyone safe in your workplace. In addition to screening Employees, a VMS that also integrates to your access control system can activate Employee badges for clearance if the person passes the pre-entry health screening.

5. Administer Pre-entry Health Screening – Visitors
A Visitor pre-entry health survey sends a COVID screening questionnaire to Visitors before they ever arrive onsite. Once Visitors are pre-registered, the VMS sends a health screening questionnaire to the potential Visitor to ensure they are not experiencing COVID symptoms. If answered correctly the Visitor will be sent an e-visit pass to finish the registration process when they arrive at the facility. If answered incorrectly, Visitors will not be allowed to enter the facility and the host will be notified.

6. Screen for Elevated Temperature
Over the course of the pandemic, the method and tools used to screen Visitors and Employees has evolved, but one component has been a constant is temperature screening. New technology takes the thermometer out of the hands of lobby personnel and automates the process of taking temperatures. Thermal hand scanners are a quick and easy solution for contactless temperature detection that integrate with Visitor Management Systems to scan and record temperatures. In addition to freeing lobby personnel, these devices help your organization follow the CDC's recommendations to monitor every person who enters a facility by automatically managing the acceptance of a person based on a configurable temperature threshold. 

7. Track Visitors Through a Facility
Visitor Management Systems give you total control over the flow of people in and out of your facility. Whether your facility is a manufacturing plant, a financial institution, or a healthcare facility, knowing who is admitted and where they are in the building enhances the safety and security of your Employees, assets, and your guests. An on-premise solution handles all aspects of Visitor management, from pre-registration to performing security and background checks to printing badges and producing reports.

8. Perform Contact Tracing
Experts say contract tracing—a method used to help control the spread of infectious diseases by identifying, tracking and monitoring people who may have been in contact with someone who has been infected—will be key to safely returning workers to their workplaces and helping prevent the spread of coronavirus. Having a Visitor Management Solution that allows for configurable fields such as, email address and phone number, to be included in the registration process in case you need to pull that Visitor information later.

Putting the Guidelines to Work
Everyone agrees that Employee and Visitor safety must take precedence as organizations decide how to move forward. As companies begin to reopen, they must assess how to effectively create a safe workplace, adhere to governmental compliance requirements, and reduce liability. From daily pre-entry health screening, to on-site temperature checks, to technology such as contact tracing and thermal cameras, organizations are searching for the best methods of making sure all Employees, staff and Visitors are well enough to enter the facility, without incurring prohibitive costs, taking up valuable time, or violating the privacy of their Employees or Visitors.

Want to learn more about STOPWare’s PassagePoint Visitor Management System? Check out our website here. 
PassagePoint Global from STOPware Inc is a complete Visitor management solution that includes capabilities for Visitor pre-registration, security and background checks, automated email/SMTP notifications, badge printing, reporting, and audit trail capabilities. Plus, STOPware offers an Employee/Visitor Pre-Entry Health Survey module, a contactless attestation solution that helps COVID-19 outside your facility, and FeverWarn™ Thermal Hand Temperature Scanner.