The Benefits of Access Control Technology (Besides the Obvious)

Using technology—scanners, RFID, wristbands, dashboards—to control and monitor the access to a concert, session room or conference, has one obvious benefit for paid admission/restricted access events: individuals that have not paid/are not registered cannot be admitted.

There are other benefits, however, especially when the control system is connected to more sophisticated reporting and analytics tools.

Here are some of the ways that event organizers can use access control systems to reduce crowd congestion, make better decisions and enhance the bottom line.

  1. Reduction in Fraud. Wristbands with embedded RFID tags—the types that are often used in effective access control systems—are very difficult to duplicate. If they are stolen before being issued, they can be immediately deactivated. If they are reported stolen after issuance, door monitors can confiscate them when presented at the venue for admission.
  2. Capacity control. Event organizers can use access control technology to tell when a room or venue is reaching capacity for security and comfort reasons. By viewing the number of attendees in rooms across the event, organizers can make real time adjustments as needed and recommend alternate conference sessions or direct attendees to overflow areas.
  3. Intelligence. Keeping attendance, waiting or VIP lists to control admittance and understand exactly who is in the “room” is a process of the past. Access control devices can determine who is in attendance and help organizers act accordingly to administer rewards, offer VIP treatment, remove unauthorized visitors or address security breaches.
  4. Behavior analysis. Event producers can use access control devices and processes to develop patterns about attendee behavior. The data can be drilled down to the individual level or filtered by job titles, industry verticals and any number of other ways. The information can then be used for planning better events and achieving sales outcomes. For example, organizers can identify which CMOs were more interested in seeing Bruce Springsteen versus Ray Kurweil.
  5. Cost control. Access control can translate into cost control. Knowing who or how many individuals have attended specific areas and cross referencing that data to the number of admissions sold provides a valuable check for organizations looking to get a handle on costs and revenue leakage.

Manual badge checking, head counting and ticket taking will soon be replaced by cost-effective electronic monitoring systems. The benefits far outweigh the costs and for some organizations that grapple with fraud and unauthorized access issues, access control technology offers security and saves money.