In JRNI’s series of best practice guidelines about how to thrive during COVID-19, we gave you some tips around 3 ways to manage footfall. Just as a quick recap, they were:
Offer curbside pickup for goods
Manage crowd size
Offer pre-arranged appointments
Today, we want to dive into #2 in a bit more detail. At this point, any businesses with brick-and-mortar locations are starting to think about how they can reopen their stores and lobbies in a way that will still allow for social distancing. The way to do it, of course, is to manage crowd size by tracking maximum capacity.
But how do you do this effectively, and in a way that limits inconvenience and promotes safety for all customers? The way we see it, you need 4 capabilities. In this blog, we’ll walk through what those are, and give you a quick glimpse into how JRNI can help.
JRNI’s capacity management feature is a part of a new product suite designed to help companies get back to business during and after COVID-19.
Set maximum capacity
First things first: Of course, you have to figure out what your maximum occupancy should be. Guidelines on this aren’t concrete, unfortunately, and all stores seem to be adopting different measures. Kroger, for example, changed their rules from allowing one person per 60 square feet - their standard building capacity - to allowing one person every 120 square feet. Similarly, Walmart is allowing five customers for each 1000 square foot block (about 20% of the store’s capacity). Every store is likely to have different needs, and arriving at decisions about what’s right for your store should be done by consulting health experts.
Once you make that decision, JRNI helps you monitor it. Within the JRNI platform, you can set a maximum capacity and make sure that both your scheduled visitors and your walk-in visitors don't exceed it.
Monitor and control maximum capacity
It’s all well and good to decide what your maximum capacity should be - but it doesn’t mean anything if you don’t keep track of it. JRNI lets you easily count visitors as they enter and leave your locations - with near real-time syncing, so that greeters can manage multiple exits and entrances.
Allow for virtual queuing
What happens when your location is full? Well, here’s what shouldn’t happen: A line stretching out the door that (a) isn’t good for social distancing and (b) discourages more people from attempting to come inside. That’s why you need virtual queuing. With JRNI, you can add visitors to a virtual queue, provide them an estimated wait time, and send them email or SMS notifications to alert them when it’s their turn.
Provide reserved time slots to eliminate wait times
Not everyone is willing to add wait time to their day. For those customers who want immediate entry to your location, let them book a time slot in advance - so they know exactly when to show up, and can go right to the front of the line. You can even reserve special time slots for healthcare workers, the elderly, and other at-risk populations.
As the economy reopens, things are going to be different. We know you need new solutions, and we know you need them fast. We can help.