By Lee Copland, Managing Director, Maxxess EMEA | August 24th, 2023

As 2023 unfolds against a backdrop of rising inflation and supply chain disruptions, organizations are on the lookout for smart strategies to enhance efficiency without straining their budgets. Security, often considered a complex and expensive domain to upgrade, is ripe for transformation, particularly in the realm of access control.

Legacy access control systems can be a challenge to upgrade due to associated costs and disruptions. The notion of complete system replacement can be off-putting. This hesitation can lead to reliance on outdated technology, which may temporarily suffice but falls short in boosting security and efficiency.

The Promise of Retrofitting

Thankfully, there’s a practical alternative to full replacement: retrofitting. This ingenious approach involves layering the latest access control software atop existing infrastructure. Often referred to as a “software takeover,” this method leverages a proven database conversion process. It allows organizations to keep their controllers, readers, enclosures, and wiring intact or upgrade specific components for targeted benefits.

Retrofitting can be swiftly deployed, often remotely, enabling organizations to embrace the latest functionalities without the hefty costs and complexities associated with complete overhauls. For multi-use and residential buildings, this approach is particularly popular, offering a cost-effective means to enhance facilities and retain tenants.

Retrofitting not only enhances protection against intruders but also grants residents and tenants greater control over their units. Modern features like QR codes on smartphones and intuitive visitor management tools are sought after by millennials and Gen Z, enhancing user experience and convenience.

For modern facilities with stable Wi-Fi, retrofitting is a straightforward endeavor. Older buildings may require a robust Wi-Fi connection, often long overdue. Installing multiple Wi-Fi points or extenders can expedite this process. This reliable internet connection ensures seamless communication between devices, enabling smartphone-based access control and touchless experiences.

Enhanced Usability and Features

Retrofit solutions significantly improve usability and functionality. They offer instant access via phone apps or fobs, real-time door monitoring, and streamlined credential management. Access rights can be finely tuned, adapting to individuals, locations, and specific times. Centralized monitoring platforms enable swift lockdown in emergencies, prioritizing safety.

Retrofitting not only reduces maintenance and operational costs but also safeguards existing investments. It quickly pays for itself by delivering enhanced security, flexibility, and user benefits. This approach helps organizations maintain competitiveness and resilience in challenging times.

Retrofitting isn’t just a boon for organizations; it also benefits systems integrators. As larger customers opt for phased retrofits, integrators enjoy ongoing work and the potential for remote monitoring, ensuring long-term installation and maintenance services.

In the pursuit of efficiency and modernization, retrofitting stands out as a sensible and effective strategy. Leveraging existing investments, organizations can uncover surprising benefits without discarding what’s already in place. A retro approach might just be the refreshing solution you’ve been seeking.