January 21, 2021, Toronto, ON – Canadian retailers and public spaces which fall under essential services can now use technology to help manage the volume of people in a space and enforce social distancing, thanks to a new tech update by Ipsos Channel Performance. The update to their customer counting tool further expands the suite of solutions from Ipsos to support Canadian businesses in managing their locations' compliance with government regulations during COVID lockdowns, and beyond.
The occupancy measure is an updated version of the Shopper Count tool, which reports on customer numbers moving through entrances and exits in any given location, building a factual picture of the flow of store traffic hourly, daily, weekly and year on year.
Updated to show the live count of visitors at any given time, the tool’s new capability allows company decision-makers of retailers and public spaces to understand accurate store data or building capacity in real-time.
This reduces the risk of any environments – whether they are retailers or public spaces such as banks or post offices – being overpopulated when the doors are open, and supports adherence to social distancing guidelines.
The technology can be leveraged to detect mask wearing among customers and employees, reporting real-time information on mask compliance in accordance with government regulations to support stores in addressing non-compliance issues and avoid fines.
Becky Harris, Ipsos Channel Performance Service Line Leader for Canada said:
“COVID-19 has had a dramatic impact on where, when and how we are able to interact with our world, and recent enforcement from government agencies has increased the pressure on Canadian retailers. Social distancing guidelines and limits on capacity have made store traffic an even more crucial data metric – all which can be tracked with our new social distancing Live Occupancy counters.
“We know that store managers, shop owners and decision-makers in other public spaces are working hard to deliver on the essentials to keep our society functioning, while making sure their staff and customers are safe.
“This new solution is our way to try and help social distancing work as effectively as possible, to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus, keeping both employees and customers safe and keeping businesses in compliance with regulations, thus avoiding fines.”
The technology works on a traffic light system, whereby ‘red’ is too busy and ‘green’ is acceptable capacity managed at a local site-specific level. This information is then shared on the Ipsos Traffic Count App in real-time, with alarms set up to staff letting them know any change of status at any threshold points.
The technology can even automatically open and close doors to keep visitor numbers to specific thresholds and be used to drive clear signage to communicate levels of occupancy at any given moment to customers if necessary.
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