What are the key qualities of an enterprise access control solution, in your opinion – what are the most important things to focus on?

Enterprise access control solutions require secure distributed architecture, distributed hardware, database partitioning, high and low level integration to sub systems such as visitor management, health, occupancy management solutions, CCTV and HR systems, as well as the ability to monitor and manage access points from a graphical map embedded in the management system – usually with CCTV integration.

You also want detailed reporting, system redundancy and multi-client options, advanced event handling and triggering, a single operator platform for intrusion, access control and CCTV, existing or easy high level interface to third party systems, including paging, duress, intercom and CCTV, including third party analytics solutions. You’ll also want hot standby redundancy and a highly evolved cyber security strategy.

Some access control solutions are optioned for enterprise applications and they have mature relationships with sub system providers that make life easier for the integrator. Virtual enterprise access control and cloud-based systems are a growing trend and may be worth consideration, depending on your application.

The latest cloud solutions combine distributed architecture, instant global upgrades of patches and new functions, as well as management by an authorised admin from anywhere. They may not be perfect for some applications, but for others, especially, smaller enterprise operations, they definitely hit the spot.