In April 2020, New York City emerged as the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak in the United States.
The city shut down in an attempt to stamp out the coronavirus’ spread, confining residents to their apartments, condos, and co-ops, with almost no one entering or exiting their buildings.
This was the case at 20 Sutton Place South, a co-op in the midtown east section of Manhattan. Prior to the arrival of Covid19, the building had two doormen on duty to open the front door, greet and vet incoming visitors, and to alert tenants when they had a guest or a package.
The need to create a visit log
That all changed as Phase 1 reopening was announced. The Board of Directors of 20 Sutton Place South needed a methodology to properly vet visitors including family members, housekeepers, nannies, dog walkers, repair personnel, and contractors to limit person-to-person interaction, to execute documents such as disclaimers or waivers, and to create a consistent and accurate log of all visitors in the event track and trace was necessary.
“We didn’t have a reception system before, because we didn’t need it,” Dave Rubenstein, the Board President, said. “Now, we do. When Phase 1 of reopening started, we needed a way to consistently vet visitors, to record their temperature as they came to our building, to ask them key questions, and to create a log of who’s been in the building and who they were visiting in order to be able to contact them if needed.”
Rubenstein searched online for a check-in system that could prompt the staff or the visitor to enter in their contact information, respond to key health-related questions, present documents for concurrence, as well as generate a visitor log. As Rubenstein says: “I like systems that prompt people to execute the same way each time so that every interaction and record created is consistent.”
The Receptionist for iPad ‘fit the bill beautifully’
When he came across The Receptionist for iPad, Rubenstein knew he had found the solution for his building. He installed The Receptionist for iPad in the building within a few days, and the results have been exactly what Rubenstein had hoped for.
“It fit the bill beautifully,” Rubenstein said. “it did everything we needed it to do and it was priced very reasonably”. “Not only could we ask all the key questions we needed, and record the responses, but we could also print out a badge with a QR code, which makes check in much easier and more efficient for all of our repeat visitors.
“It is a fantastic program that you can totally customize — well worth the cost of the iPad, the stand, and the software. … It’s absolutely the right system and service for this purpose.”
Beyond functionality that met Rubenstein’s needs, The Receptionist delivered in another important way.
“Customer service the way [The Receptionist] does it is rare these days,” he said. “I worked in a field where failure was not an option and world class customer service was a given. I didn’t have to demand anything from The Receptionist folks. It has been one of the best customer experiences I’ve had in years.”
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