Updated: Feb 16
In today's blog, I will introduce the concept of "Elastic Reception" and why we need it adapt to it during post pandemic. An Office Reception Checklist is also written for you to get ready for the post pandemic workplace.
Post pandemic, the workplace will not be the same. One outcome of the pandemic is that it has accelerated changes that were creeping along the adoption curve:
The explosion in Teams and Zoom consumption
The work from home necessity, propelling a hybrid working culture
The death of presenteeism - we hope, where people in the office scored psychological commitment points.
Resizing offices that require a long commute
The rapid growth in near home co-working offices in satellite locations
The review and expansion of secondary city offices for satellite collaboration centres
The pressure on the office to be a productive place that beats the home or co-working office.
The rapid adoption of digital transformation tools by businesses to catch up with the consumer trend and close the gap.
What is Elastic Reception?
One of the last bastions of "old world" is the front of house reception management model. It is fundamentally flawed as you have a fixed number of staff and therefore visitor throughput and volatile visitor traffic flows that are unpredictable.
At traffic peak times, your reception will be occupied by answering phone calls, administrative support, and welcoming your visitors.
At other times, your reception team is wandering around, being paid the same salary but the reception management is not ideally efficient.
That's why we've introduced the concept of an 'elastic reception' service - to efficiently deliver the best customer service at all times under unpredictable visitor traffic flows.
The predictability issue of your reception management can be transformed easily now with digital visitor pre-registration to deliver the best reception service. Pre-registration functionality can deliver huge benefits; transforming a once reactive reception into an intuitive one.
Where does the elastic reception service come in?
Vgreet visitor management kiosks immediately add digital efficiencies in your reception management with:
3 Second Touchless Check-in
Delivering in a single kiosk up to 20,000 visitors a month capacity
There are two ways of delivering peak traffic efficiency to your reception service:
Add Digital Capacity to supplement front of house team members
Extend the digital capacity to your reception service with "elastic" Exec PA call answering service with a simple voice command
Read more about our partnership with Moneypenny virtual receptionist here.
Reception service in multi-purpose reception
The benefits of upgrading to a elastic reception are:
The capacity flexes to your visitor profile
Changes the delivery model completely
With just two moves
However, it goes a lot further than that, as the elastic digital reception service can now move into standardising other front of house use cases:
The unmanned Reception
The single person reception
Reception service in unmanned reception
The unmanned reception could be a remote location or satellite office.
Once you start to think about the your Elastic Reception Service for your reception management, you will be reviewing your Flexible Working or Hybrid strategy for Real Estate across your portfolio.
The trend is that secondary cities and towns, particularly those with strong fibre bandwidth services are now being re-tasked as Collaboration, Teamwork and Customer Management Centres.
The traditional reception service would be accessing the building by ringing the bell in an unmanned reception. Or, being greeted by a security guard who is obsessive about rules and lists, and that is your first impression!
Now you can add digital visitor management kiosks to not just improve the first impression and productivity of team members but reliably introduce a standard visitor management policy.
Reception service in single person reception
It's not just the previously unmanned locations, the reception management at a single person receptions is fraught with single point of failure issues.
Supplementing digital visitor management resource makes enormous sense, given the list of things you are now expected to deliver consistently.
Office Reception Checklist for Return to Work
Use this office reception checklist in your return to office planning. Make sure your reception is not exposed to the following risks. Installing a Vgreet digital visitor management kiosk at your reception can help you reduce or remove these challenges. Some of these items will need the support of other departments, such as Legal, Finance, HR or IT.
GDPR risks - ensuring existing visitor management systems are fully GDPR compliant
You set your visitor data automatic purging to ensure compliance
Regular visitors opt in to facial recognition
Fines - social distancing at your reception, PPE and other COVID enforcements
Health and safety enforcement orders and spot checks
NHS Track and Trace self-isolation (encouraging an employee to come into the workplace and not self-isolate means an employer can be fined over £1000)
Remove the risk by using digital visitor management
Visitor Data Security
Auto purge visitor data after X days
Congested reception contamination risk
'COVID-Safe' workplace risk assessment
Health and safety executive risk assessment
Review existing risk assessments if changing office layout/furniture to allow for social distancing, to minimise hazards around the workplace
Remove by adding Vgreet capacity
Visitor blacklist management
Standard within Vgreet
Auto delete visitor emails so you do not have GDPR issues, standard within Vgreet
Visitor Self Health checks
Customise your pre-registration invite
Visitor Track and Trace
Track visitors in the building on days when "now isolating staff were in"
Visitor reception processes (touchless)
Ensure Touchless express 3 second check-in with a Vgreet Visitor Management Kiosk
Visitor reception contamination through congested receptions
Remove the whole risk of a congested reception by adding rapid check-in process with Vgreet, having the capacity to check-in 2,500 visitors a day!
Your reception relied on tape, screens and signs
Turned the reception into an emergency zone
Created the opposite of psychological safety for your returning employees
Whistle blower risk; you're the one the tabloids will get a photo of, in your reception with staff or visitors queuing.
We suggest with that scary list of RISK you assess your Visitor Management readiness NOW as it usually takes 6 weeks for your customised solution to be configured and signed off internally and then ordered.
A simple set of useful calculators are below:
It takes 20-30 minutes to carry out a simple digital assessment and see where your tailored gains are, risks you can eliminate, visitor experience gains, Book your risk & experience health check here.