Proxyclick visitor management system for enterprise companies worldwide
Please introduce yourself and the Startup Proxyclick to our readers!
Sure thing. My name is Gregory Blondeau. I’m the founder and CEO of Proxyclick, the leading visitor management system for enterprise companies worldwide.
Why did you decide to start a business?
Going back to when I was a boy, I always had ‘side businesses’ to earn some spending money on my own without having to ask my parents for it. So I guess you could say I always wanted to be an entrepreneur. I’ve also traveled frequently throughout my career in business development for global companies and visited many offices. During those experiences, it’s always struck me that I was welcomed so inefficiently at front desks. I’ve also been concerned by how limited security was and the fact that my personal data was often exposed during the checking-in process.
Based on those observations, and with an awareness that others were certainly experiencing those same problems, I proposed a first solution to those issues in 2011. Fast forward to now, our team at Proxyclick offers a best-in-class solution for managing on-premise visits. It’s designed to make the visitor experience seamless and secure, while at the same time respecting visitor privacy. Today, we work with some of the world’s biggest enterprises including L’Oréal, Vodafone, and Airbnb across the globe—and we’re expanding aggressively in the US, our biggest market.
Looking back, I can see that every step in my career path has pushed me in the direction to where I am now at Proxyclick. Our team has taken visitor management from an optional item to a mission-critical part of business by offering a cloud-based platform designed to meet the needs of any global enterprise.
What is the vision behind Proxyclick?
We set out to address an overall lack of efficiency in the front desk experience and too many missed opportunities to make a positive impression on visitors. And as I mentioned above, there’s an alarming lack of security and personal data is too easily exposed during the check-in process. If you take in mind the thousands of visitors and contractors entering offices and production sites every day, these situations present a significant threat to the safety of everyone located inside the location.
At Proxyclick, we’ve come up with a solution that addresses all of those challenges while also ensuring full compliance. Our technology also helps enterprises project a strong brand/image from the very first site visit.
From the idea to the start what have been the biggest challenges so far and how did you finance yourself?
I learned early on that raising money and business success are two very different things. No matter how good your product is, if the market is not ready for your product, your investments in sales and marketing won’t matter. It simply will not work.
When I started Proxyclick I was determined to bootstrap it with my own money. I was determined from day one to listen to users and to develop new features based on their feedback. Relying on your own financing makes you very smart when it comes to how you spend money. It also forces you to think long and hard before making any business decisions. Doing things that way at the beginning helps me every day at Proxyclick.
Who is the target group of Proxyclick?
We help trusted brands across every industry to transform the way they welcome their visitors and contractors. Today, some of our most notable clients include L’Oréal, Vodafone, Revolut, PepsiCo, Audi, and other global Fortune 500 companies with both offices and production sites. With more than 30 million visits registered in 10,000 locations around the world, our solution allows these organisations to minimise security and compliance risks, while upholding visitors’ privacy rights.
How do Proxyclick work? What are the advantages? What makes you different from other providers?
Our solution is easy to deploy and a truly unique offering in the marketplace. The key differentiations are in the primary benefits for our Touchless Check-in. First, in terms of screening visitors, you can do so according to each company’s health and safety protocol, via Proxyclick’s remote registration portal. Physical check-ins happen with a unique QR code assigned to each visitor once they’ve passed the screening process. Second, security is fully integrated with all Proxyclick security features, including access control integration possibilities with Nedap, Lenel, C-CURE 9000, S2, Genetec, etc. Finally, in terms of compliance, data retention periods can be automated for any visitor information collected during the screening process.
In addition, the Touchless Check-in can be implemented quickly with Proxyclick’s user provisioning and single sign-on authentication. This feature is critical for global enterprises with large headcounts who need fast and easy onboarding for their employees. Our new contactless check-in solution is the next step in the evolution of our efforts to help companies worldwide provide a safe return to work for their employees; a major priority over the coming weeks and months. It also begins with implementing smart and easy-to-use technology at the front desk.
How has your company changed with Corona? How did you adjust to it and what changes have you made?
We’ve taken into account the fact that visibility into who is entering or leaving your premises is now more critical than ever during this global crisis. Companies know that understanding who’s potentially come into contact with the virus is the only way to ensure employees that their workplace is safe. We’ve responded to that by introducing a completely contactless solution that relies heavily on access control, with no physical interaction necessary. This includes no touching of equipment or surfaces upon entry or exit of any facility.
At the start of the remote registration process, all visitors will receive an email that includes a customisable risk assessment questionnaire. Organisations can add images and mandatory videos in the screening process. Once the vetting process is completed, visitors receive unique QR codes via email for access to your building. Those QR codes are scanned from the email itself or added directly into visitors’ mobile wallets. We’ve responded to the fact that the worlds of access control and visitor management are coming together in a more meaningful way than ever.
Where do you see the opportunity in the crisis?
It’s clear that the days of security guards and fortified front gates are over. Security teams have evolved and are now much more involved in the IT side of facility security. It’s also clear that there will be lawsuits against companies who don’t take adequate care to measure who is onsite at all times, and what their risk level is, etc. That’s why now more than ever is the time for security teams to adopt technology that can help minimize these risks to the fullest extent possible. We’re even seeing some businesses enlisting and implementing teams of “safety ambassadors” at their locations. That’s a highly effective way to get everyone involved and keep them accountable.
Ultimately, organisations no longer have to choose between safety or efficiency. They can have both. At Proxyclick, we work directly with those responsible for managing or securing entrances to business sites. Our goal is to help and advise those organisations ready to begin the process of helping their employees return to work, and eventual recovery phase.
Proxyclick, where does the road go? Where do you see yourself in five years?
In terms of the near future, we foresee more integrations with everything from access control platforms, automated elevators, etc. in an effort to truly virus-proof buildings. It’s also likely there will be an effort to remove physical interfaces altogether, or tablets, at check-in, in favor of an entirely touchless check-in process. I also believe there will be increased scrutiny among food production and manufacturing sites and a need for centrally managed software to track everyone coming to a workplace.
At the end: Which 3 tips would you give to future founders?
Technology is transforming the security and property world just like many other industries before it. It’s also creating a lot of value. With that in mind, my advice is to remain informed about the latest tech available or you risk being left behind. Secondly, don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty. I remember early on putting in the legwork, quite literally, when I personally went door-to-door to talk to receptionists and security staff about their pains related to managing visitors. Lastly, and as a testament to my growing team, do everything you can to keep your company culture intact as you scale. You are only as good as your weakest linking, and I truly believe our values as “one team” have gotten us where we are today.
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Thank you Gregory Blondeau for the Interview
Statements of the author and the interviewee do not necessarily represent the editors and the publisher opinion again.