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Workplace car parks affect employees’ short or long stay

New research shows that the average commute time to work for a driver is now 52 minutes – four minutes more than a decade ago.

So, with workers spending more time than ever travelling to and from jobs, is enough being done to simplify the one aspect of their journey that employers can control; parking?

Smart car journeys

There has been major investment and technological advances in trying to improve journeys for drivers. Satellite navigation, interactive mapping and real time journey information are just some examples of the technological solutions utilised by drivers daily. All of this helps to keep drivers informed and prepared for the journey ahead. But what happens when they reach their destination and need somewhere to park?

As an employer, the impact of staff parking should not be underestimated. This factor can affect a prospective employee’s decision to accept a job offer or the length of time existing staff remain with the company. According to an article by theCsuite workers will consider leaving jobs due to insufficient parking, so if corporate parking is available, it is important it is effectively managed.

For commuters trying to ensure a work/ life balance, they naturally want to spend minimal time driving and to maximise output in the office or time at home with their families. So, upon reaching work, they want to be able to park as quickly and conveniently as possible. Circling or queuing for spaces can lead to frustration and employees arriving to work late or in a rush. It also sets their mood; if an employee has a negative experience at the beginning of the work day they are likely to arrive in a negative state of mind which could impact on productivity.

With first impressions having such a fundamental impact, what needs to be done to ensure the final mile of an employee’s journey is a happy and efficient one?

Parking the issue

The answer is potentially simple; employees want to know if and where spaces are available, so they can be directed accordingly. For the vast majority of car parking situations, the solution to providing employees with clear information on space availability doesn’t have to be a complicated one. Clearview offers a range of effective parking solutions that enable employers to manage car parks to the benefit of employees.

Our Insight Parking system is an integrated software and hardware solution that works with a range of sensors and signs to provide real-time availability. By using the Clearview Intelligence Insight Count Station (see image), car park operators can choose to monitor available spaces wirelessly, using individual bay sensors, or traditional inductive loop detection at the entrance and exit of a car park.

The wireless bay sensors are installed in the centre of a parking bay and can be used with connected Variable Message Signs (VMS) to inform on the specific available spaces. When a vehicle parks over the sensor, this detection is wirelessly transmitted to an access point, which in turn wirelessly transmits the information to the Insight Count Station. From here, the information is sent to the Insight Parking software, which provides real-time occupancy data that can be communicated to update VMS signs.

Alternatively, inductive loops can be used to record the overall availability, or smaller defined zones within a car park. The loops, which are wired into the Insight Count Station, detect vehicles as they enter and leave the car park and updates the overall availability accordingly.

Parking Final

By utilising such solutions to monitor car park usage, the information can be communicated using VMS but also through mobile apps. This provides the potential to ensure the completeness of the employee’s commute by advising them of where to park in advance of their arrival and directing them accordingly.

Maximising the benefits

For most employees, the start of the working day does not begin when they arrive at their desk or depot, but when they leave home for their commute. And the workplace does not start inside the building, but outside of it.

Staff car parking is a benefit that is not available in all working environments and its importance should not be underestimated. To receive the maximum benefits from employees, their benefits must also be maximised, starting with the moment they arrive at work.

Author: Jemma C |Date Published: November 2018

Links: Parking

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