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Guilty of all charges: 5 accusations against the paper logbook

Picture of Maren Hedrich

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I was only a few weeks into my new job when I was flown across the ocean to represent Proxyclick together with Gregory at The Next Web 2015 Conference in New York City where we launched the beta release of our brand new iOS kiosk app.  

In our luggage: a cardboard tombstone for our booth. Light in weight, but bulky to carry and heavy in its overall message, the inscription read: “RIP – Here lies the signing in book. Lived a long life, but became obsolete.”

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Our booth at The Next Web 2015 in NYC

 

You probably are now having exactly the same thoughts as I had a few days before the conference: ‘Could there be anything less inviting than a tombstone? Is Proxyclick not all about hospitality and a warm welcoming reception? Do we not want to give a similar welcome to the people visiting our booth?’

But then it hit me.

Obviously, bringing a gravestone to a conference, was provocative. It stirred up conversations around the event about the “Halloween” stand and it attracted a lot of visitors to us, as people were curious to find out what it was all about.

However, the attention-seeking marketing effect was only a by-product.

What we here at Proxyclick really wanted to bring across is that killing the signing in book and replacing it with an iPad at your front desk is the necessary evil you need to commit to bring your corporate hospitality to the next level.

Why? Read on, as I bring the signing in book to trial and lay out the reasons why your company should put the logbook on death row today rather than tomorrow.

 

Accusation #1: The signing in book violates your visitors' privacy

By asking visitors to sign in using the traditional logbook they are providing confidential and sometimes detailed information about themselves. This information is accessible to read for any visitor who signs in after them.

This privacy violation is problematic for two reasons:

  • You cannot control if somebody takes advantage of having easy access to other people’s personal data
  • If visitors can see other people’s details you leave them with the impression that their data is not secure

Paper logbook is guilty.

 

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Accusation #2: The signing in book puts your building’s security at risk

The visibility of visitors' data in the signing in book makes many guests hesitant to fill out all the fields properly. Fake names or other incorrect details, empty fields or bad handwriting are often the result.

Having a clear and updated overview of all external visitors at any given time is crucial during emergencies.

In short, the signing in book puts your building’s security at risk due to trivialities such as badly filled-out forms.

Paper logbook is guilty.

 

Accusation #3: The signing in book irritates your visitors

Filling out the fields in a signing in book is time-consuming and can easily irritate your visitors who might be late or don’t have their details to hand.

Even worse, if your receptionist is not around and visitors arrive at an empty front desk, visitors are forced to wait or wander into your offices as they don’t know what else to do. Using an electronic check-in via an iPad invites your visitors to sign themselves in and notifies the host at the same time, whereas a signing in book left somewhere on or behind the counter doesn’t give the same warm welcome.

The logbook gives your visitors a cold, impersonal welcome which leave your visitors annoyed.

Paper logbook is guilty.

 

Accusation #4: The signing in book misrepresents your company

We believe that the first impression your company gives should be better than an open logbook with bad handwriting.

Your visitors are in many cases also your potential clients or brand ambassadors. As a hospitality company at heart, we won’t accept anything less than wowing your visitors right at the entrance, and so should you.

The signing in book is guilty of misrepresenting your company with its old-fashioned design, privacy and security concerns as well as other annoyances.

Paper logbook is guilty.

 

Accusation #5: The signing in book prevents receptionists to excel in their job

Last but not least, the hassle of signing your visitor in using a traditional logbook takes time away from your receptionist to truly make your visitor feel welcome.

Receptionists, or Front Desk Heroes, as we prefer to call them at Proxyclick, are the figure heads of your company (Note: If you are one of them we invite you to join this Facebook group). They are usually the first employees that your visitors meet and define therefore the first impression of any important clients or members of the public that come for a visit. This responsibility makes the role of the receptionist so important.

Using a paper logbook means a receptionist’s first conversation with a visitor revolves around helping them fill in the book such as “What to do if a box is not big enough” and similar, rather than allowing your front desk heroes to deliver a memorable visitor experience.

Paper logbook is guilty.
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We believe the signing in book is guilty of all 5 accusations

We believe that killing your logbook is the best thing you can do to give your guests the visitor experience they deserve and one that your corporate hospitality truly stands for.

And for this, I am looking forward to continue to put tombstones up in commemoration with my new Proxyclick teammates :-)

What other Facility Management practices are not serving you anymore that you would like to send to the graveyard?

Share them in the comment section below. We are curious to hear from you.


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