What is wrong with background checks when using visitor management software?

What is wrong with background checks when using visitor management software?

Background checks have become increasingly popular with visitor management software. Most prominent over the past 5 years has been the option to use software that will check a sex offenders list when every person signs into your location. In 2012 there were approximately 747,000 sex offenders in USA. How good would that be if you could check the name of the visitor signing in against the list of 747,000 names and stop known sex offenders from entering your school.

What is wrong with this scenario?

when a person signs into a visitor management kiosk they must answer any questions presented as part of the sign in process, imagine how many questions you would need to ask to narrow down to make a match of one person on a list of 747,000 names. Should we ask a person signing in on a visitor kiosk there birth date? Would you be happy giving your birth date to sign into a building? An easy way around asking for a birth date is to  ask fro a drivers licence to be scanned and then you can get a birth date without asking for a birth date.

How many of the 747,000 registered sex offenders in USA would give up their drivers licence to enter a building? How many would say I don’t have a drivers licence? There is nothing wrong with not having a drivers licence.

So here is the real problem…

A known sex offender walking into a building that asks for a drivers licence can say “I do not have a drivers licence” Who is going to argue with that…now the registered sex offender must enter his name into the visitor management kiosk, lets say his name is James Smith (made up name) the first thing that will happen is the name James Smith will be checked against 747,000 registered sex offenders and what if there are 2 people on the registered sex offenders list called James Smith? More importantly what if the person standing in front of you is not one of those 2 registered sex offenders….you can start to see how this can get very difficult. Often it will be an admin or reception staff member who will have to deal with this situation.

Now Sally (the receptionist) must tell James Smith standing in front of her as the signed in visitor that he has just been flagged on a sex offenders list…BUT Sally does not know if this is correct or not, Sally only knows that James Smith signed in and the registered sex offenders list with 747,000 names on it in 2012 has 2 James Smith on the list…..very awkward for the receptionist Sally

Watch lists will work exactly the same, the issue is if you create a watch list for a name James Smith because you want to exclude James Smith from coming into your building for what ever reason then you need to build more of a profile than just the name of the person. For example what if you knew the persons email address, that would be good now you can add an email address to the profile of James Smith. Problem is now you need to ask every person signing in to enter their email address so you can manage your watch list of a couple of names, this is certainly mass inconvenience for the majority for a couple of people.

What is another solution?  What is a better answer?

The reality is when a visitor signs in they are always hosted, rarely today visitors can walk freely around a location, if you think you could have issues at your location it may be easier, less intrusive and more personal to host every visitor on site 🙂

Book in a demonstration with me and see how visitor management software can help your building