Tips, Tricks and New Technology


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This tip from Steve Keller, Committee Chair:  Visitor badges given to administrative visitors should be color coded. Use six--not seven--different colors on the visitor pass. The color can be a simple bold colored stripe.  Don’t associate a specific color with a specific day and change colors each day.  You can easily spot visitor badges being worn a second day by someone who failed to turn the badge in the day before because they will be wearing the wrong color. Someone wearing red on Tuesday when Monday was a red day will stick out easily. How do you prevent someone like a contractor from keeping their pass at the end of the day and re-using it? If they keep one each day for six days, they will have them all and wil never have to stand in line to sign in again. Make passes larger than might fit in a wallet. This make it inconvenient to keep a stock of their own passes.  How do you use this same system year after year but still make “missing” passes obsolete?  This year, print the passes in portrait format. Next year, or when you feel you need to start fresh with new passes, print them in landscape format.  Guards can easily spot and confiscate expired passes.

This tip from Steve Swen, security system engineer:  Issue iPod’s with wireless capabilities to all guards if you have wireless in your galleries. Old first and second generation iPhones can also be used and they cost very little on eBay. Just don’t subscribe to phone service and you can use the phone as a reference device. What do I mean?  You can publish your policy manual, building floor plans, fire extinguisher and guard phone locations, etc. in .PDF and load them on the iPhone or iPod.  Some Apps allow you to send text messages over the wireless network at no cost. This cuts down on noisy radio traffic in galleries.

This tip from Alicia Ricci, architect and museum security consultant: Use a credit card that gives you airline miles when you make purchases for your security department. Pay the balance monthly to avoid interest charges.  Some consultants even take credit cards. Use the miles to get a free ticket to go to the AAM, ASIS or Smithsonian Conferences each year.

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