Case Study: Rakegate Primary Electronic Visitor Management
Based in Wolverhampton, Rakegate Primary is a large, friendly school with 386 pupils. They have been through a major site development over the last few years and now have a purpose built school building which provides all students with well-equipped, first class learning facilities. Still growing in numbers, Rakegate is a forward-thinking environment looking to provide a warm and professional welcome to school visitors.
Rakegate originally started working with SG World’s visitor pass solution in 2010, moving from a basic manual diary to a paper Visitor Pass system. In 2011, Rakegate wanted to further advance their visitor management by introducing an electronic solution. SG World were able to introduce them to VisIT ED – a dedicated, low cost software solution for schools incorporating a simple, intuitive user interface and a flexible range of features including visitor passes and staff ID.
Migrating to a software system brought a number of benefits to Rakegate – the function to remember regular visitors, a plastic rewrite card option and the ability to track staff on and off school premises.
Rakegate like to work closely with their parents, partners and community, creating an extremely busy visitor schedule.
“We have lots of repeat visitors – musicians, nurses, speech therapists and I don’t need to retype in their contact details every time. I run a contact lookup, hit print and create a plastic ID card – we’ve already got over 200 repeat visitors in the system which saves me a lot of time,” explained Sue Caton, Rakegate’s Office Manager.
“I show schools one of the re-write cards and ask them not to think of it as a card but as 250 visitors,” explained Patrick Ashe, SG World Sales Manager. “The printer uses a thermal print process so you have no additional ink costs. It’s the greener option which is an important benefit for schools. Our most recent printer model has a multi-print option where you can add a ribbon and produce colour photo staff ID passes.”
The further area Rakegate were looking to improve was the ability to track staff leaving and re-entering the building.
“Managing visitors is our priority but we were also concerned that in the event of a fire or emergency we wouldn’t be able to demonstrate to the HSE that we had an effective way of knowing which staff were on site at any given time,” said Mr Steve Harris, Headteacher at Rakegate.
The solution for Rakegate was to install wall mounted scanners which are easy for staff to use and can identify when people forget to scan in and out, helping a school promote best practice with staff in scanning in and out of the building. In addition to VisIT ED being able to instantly produce a ‘one-click’ roll call, this information can also be sent to any designated smart phone.
“I would never go back to a paper based system, this works well for us and we’ve had positive feedback from our Local Authority inspector. We also appreciate VisIT ED puts us in a good position to fulfil our safeguarding obligations with Ofsted by identifying people on the school premises”, Mr Harris said.