As the world moves to the new normality and measures are lifted, governments have put in place restrictions to support social distancing and avoid any new spread of COVID-19.

Managing and controlling the numbers and access of people in and out of stores and offices, or indeed any building open to the public is in fact crucial in supporting that people maintain a safe distance between them.

Measuring occupancy as it happens with immediate update of the people count is therefore critical as it could lead to unsafe situations where too many people are allowed in a space and social distancing is hard to control. The data needs to be gathered real-time and transmitted instantly to the integrated occupancy software platform in order to give an exact picture on how many people are in a store, room or a specific area of a building.

Another aspect to consider is the precision in the count of people going in or out of a store, making sure there are no errors in the count that over-time accumulate minimizing the reliability of the information, and which could again create unsafe situations or impact negatively on the store sales, if for instance no access was allowed based on incorrect reporting that occupancy threshold had been reached.

The OPTEX Akribos VC-1020 is a real-time and multi-directional indoor people counter that can provide more than 98 per cent accuracy. It ignores trollies and baskets and manages groups of individuals by tracking the direction of every individual, even complicated movements such as people turning back or standing still. Now featuring MQTT protocol, the Akribos sensor can be integrated with third party analytics software transmitting instantly the data gathered which can then be used to create key-performance reports, dashboards and visual displays to control occupancy levels.

Many businesses and retailers are using their security staff to manage access and control queue volumes and as such, installers have an opportunity to become the principal point of contact for bringing new solutions regarding occupancy level and social distancing.

The solution with OPTEX Akribos solves the issue created by the pandemic, but also solves the ongoing challenge of efficiently and accurately monitoring occupancy levels within a busy working or retail environment. The analytics and people traffic reporting can help retailers manage their staff and product placement better, and in the office to have a more efficient building management based on occupancy level.

Optex solutions are distributed locally by Hills.

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