Products, Products, Safety

Unpacking safety and site access systems

How the system you choose can increase or undermine your project’s safety and compliance.

How the system you choose can increase or undermine your project’s safety and compliance.

Want to achieve maximum compliance without maximum headache? Here’s the key functionality to consider when selecting a site access system for your construction project.

Physical access control has evolved significantly in recent years as regulatory bodies have introduced new safety checks for workers and visitors entering construction sites. Expanding on use of turnstiles, biometric swing gates and physical sign in at each access point, entering a construction site now requires additional verification of induction status, currency of tickets, completion of SWMS, and more recently – COVID-19 daily declarations and worker vaccination status.

As site access requirements have increased in number and complexity, new systems have also evolved to enable HSEQ managers to more easily manage their implementation. Beyond paper-based systems which are being phased out as the industry transitions to digital, the current approaches vary by the following functional outcomes:

  • Process automation – how much time is saved through elimination of manual processes
  • Ease of implementation – speed of installation and frictionless adoption by workers
  • Safety and compliance – degree to which the system enforces compliance and site safety
  • Data synchronisation – frequency of encrypted data transmission between the gate and a central database
  • Real-time data flow and integrity – the extent to which data registered at the gate can be pushed right through to the central database so it can be used in real-time reporting

Automating compliance processes

The goal of HSE management teams should be to eliminate risks and automate as much of the process as possible, alleviating their existing workload and freeing up more time to get back out on site. Process automation is best achieved through a unified gate and software access system that connects a worker’s entry in real-time, with the data on their records, and enables low-touch completion of the verification process.

Software and physical hardware that has been designed as one from the outset, is now proving to be the most effective way to deliver this degree of process automation. 

A disconnected HSE and site access system will make or break compliance and safety on your project and create rework for your team

It may be that connecting a gate with a third party software system requires a work-around or installation of other apps, use of fobs or even older technology; there may be inaccurate data or absence of real time data, and some even lack the ‘smarts’ to enforce compliance at site entry – permitting a worksite culture that doesn’t value or prioritise compliance measures

Here’s what matters most when selecting site access solutions for your construction site

Frictionless entry/ exit of workers and rapid data validation

Frictionless site movement and a seamless flow of data from sign in, to site management 

To increase compliance and maintain efficient movement of workers during peak times, the most effective site access systems are designed to relay immense amounts of encrypted data between gates and software in a matter of milliseconds. Given the volume of workers entering large construction sites, even minor system issues or reduced functionality will result in compounding delays.

An effective site access system should be able to relay data between the gate and software system a minimum of four times per worker per entry.

This workflow requires coordination of numerous system components to relay complex commands and encrypted data packets as they pass through layers of security and are checked against a central database. Completing this process within milliseconds requires a highly orchestrated system that facilitates the flow of data between components without glitches or delays.

The best way to avoid a traffic jam at the gates is to utilise a unified system that transmits a rapid flow of real-time data between gates and software – within milliseconds.

Compliance automation at the gate

Verify induction status and deny entry to non-compliant or untrained workers in real-time

As site compliance remains a priority on every project, ensuring only compliant and trained workers are permitted entry to the site automatically, should be an essential functional outcome of every safety and site access system.

Unlike competitors, Simpel’s unified system can complete and verify a worker’s induction and training status automatically and in real-time, and then permit or deny entry to the worker in a matter of milliseconds.

Simpel’s systems are able to check compliance such as:

  1. Is the worker registered?
  2. Is worker inducted and permitted to work on the site?
  3. Has the worker signed the SWMS and safety documentation?
  4. Is the worker and their company compliant, or has access been suspended or revoked?
  5. Is the worker seeking access within permitted working hours?
  6. Is their QR pass activated following their induction approval?
  7. For biometric access- does the worker’s profile image match via facial recognition algorithms?
  8. Has the worker completed a Daily Declaration (COVID or other) and provided answers acceptable to enter the site?
  9. Is the worker wearing a face mask?

Gate systems that enforce compliance and meet stringent regulations

Gate systems that allow pass-backs or permit a culture of disregard for compliance are actually failing your HSE team and risking your site security and overall compliance. 

To help your team to create a safe and intelligent worksite that meets the latest industry standards, a gate that withstands the rigours of a construction environment, as well as automates and enforces adherence to compliance is crucial for reaching your HSE objectives.

Simpel’s systems are installed at some of Australia’s largest construction sites operated by industry heavyweights including, Multiplex, Lendlease and FDC. These sites host thousands of workers everyday and access and safety systems facilitate seamless management of tens of thousands of movements, ensuring worksites remain safe and compliant.

Simpel’s built-in features include:

  • Anti pass back – allowing only one scan of a QR code for each worker’s entry and exit
  • Emergency break glass – gates are pre-installed with emergency exit break glass for evacuation management
  • Pre-configured wireless communications – all gates are pre-configured with a wireless router and 4G data to allow rapid data flow and a plug and play solution on-site.

Get an edge

A pivotal difference between a single unified system like Simpel, and a system that relies on components developed by third parties, is the ability to control the entire software development process, to release new functionality and to rapidly respond to new regulatory changes.

Simpel releases new software functionality regularly and its R&D team is consistently refining and enhancing its gate hardware and communications technology.

When COVID-19 arrived in Australia, Simpel were one of the first operations management solution to release new functionality which allowed project sites to:

  • automate mandated completion of COVID-19 daily declarations with lock outs for non-compliant workers
  • request and securely store vaccination status

All this was validated before the worker was permitted access to a project site. This additional functionality helped to automate new COVID related requirements and to ensure worksites remained safe and highly compliant.

To learn more and view the Site Safety Checklist visit – www.projectsimpel.com

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