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How Much Does a Card Access Control System Cost?

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Compare Card Access Control Prices

Workplace security is of the utmost importance. You don't want just anyone roaming the halls or gaining access to restricted areas. It is crucial to protect your company's sensitive information, ensuring that important documents and proprietary information don't fall into the wrong hands.

Installing a card access control system is one the best ways to improve the security of your site. It allows employees access to the building, while keeping others out. It can be used strictly to secure outside doors or to restrict access to certain parts of the building, such as the server room or human resources files.

Card readers are just one of several types of door access control systems, but they're probably the most popular. You can opt for a system that scans employee ID badges or a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) reader that recognizes an ID card or key fob when it is in close proximity to the reader.

Card access control systems can be used for a small business to secure just one or two doors or for large, multi-site companies with hundreds or thousands of employees. Larger systems are often integrated with a company's time and attendance software to keep track of employee comings and goings.

If you're concerned about security both inside and outside of the building, you can choose a card access control system that offers different levels of access to various areas within the building. You might want to restrict anyone but IT staff from entering the server room, for example, or you might want just a handful of employees to have access to an area where a new product is in development. If you work in a particularly sensitive industry or have government contracts, an interior card access system is a must.

A card access control system consists of the readers that are placed near each restricted doorway, ID cards or RFID devices that are assigned to each employee, a secure locking system for each door and software. The software is extremely important because it will allow you to set varying levels of access for certain doors and areas. Ask for a demo before you commit to a system to make sure the software is easy to use.

Card Access Control Average Costs

Expect to pay an average of $1,500 to $2,500 per door for a high quality system for up to 150 people. If you're looking for a card access service that will service 150+ employees and have two to three access doors it will cost upwards of $2,500 to $3,500. For a large company of 300+ employees with multiple access doors it could cost upwards of $10,000 to $15,000 for initial setup. That price includes everything you will need – door hardware, software, key cards, and installation.

Price Breakdown

  • It will cost an average of $1,000 to $1,500 for the hardware for one door
  • It will cost an average of $3 to $5 per keycard
  • Monthly service fees can range from $10 to $100 per month

Why is there such a large range on maintenance fees? Some card access services encompass the cost of the keycards and replacement keycards in maintenance fees and charge nothing for making the access cards themselves! Different card access companies package their products in a different way. Therefore, you, as the buyer, need to do some math to break down the cost of the service on a per user basis to find the best deal. Don't just look at price, though. Be sure to consider ease of use, support, and convenience as part of the equation!

Card-Based Systems vs. Keypad Systems vs. Biometric Systems

Card-based systems are middle of the road, price-wise, when it comes to door access systems. They're more expensive than keypad systems due to the added security and the cost of issuing individual ID badges, but they're less expensive than biometric systems, which use high-tech fingerprint, handprint or iris scanning to identify employees.

Extra features or components can quickly boost up the price. You might want an alarm that sounds when someone has propped a door open or a photo ID printer to make your employee badges. These features can add a few hundred to several thousand to the total purchase price, depending on the size of your company.

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