VisTab Ltd

Signing in and keeping safe

VisTab is the brainchild of Christchurch businessman Dave McKenzie. Launched in 2012, it’s a visitor management system like no other. Gone are the days of sign-in boards and books or whiteboards and stickers – visitors sign in and out on a tablet.

It was after the Canterbury earthquakes that Dave decided to investigate developing software that would tell a business owner who was in their building at any one time.

“VisTab builds a comprehensive database of visitor details and can run advanced reports, helping business owners to meet stringent health and safety requirements. You can see who is coming and going from your premises at the touch of a button. In the event of a disaster where paperwork can be lost or destroyed, it is invaluable.”

Dave had been working for a large data company in Christchurch before ‘taking the leap’ and establishing his own business. “I had quite a lot of knowledge about data collection, health and safety and workplace practices and could see there was an opportunity to create this tool for a wide range of businesses, schools and government departments. I knew the scalability of such a system would be huge,” he explains.

Dave and his team spent 18 months developing VisTab’s software and 12 months ago, VisTab was launched into the New Zealand market.

“In only a year we have grown to a point now where we have hundreds of schools and businesses on board using the VisTab system. And we have multiple enquiries daily.  It’s a system that is completely customisable and has applications for every business and industry, large and small.”

VistTab is not restricted to recording visitors – it has an important application for health and safety.

“With the new health and safety laws that are coming into effect, it was evident that VisTab could work in a range of businesses eliminating paperwork and increasing efficiency around reporting,” says Dave.

For industries like building and forestry that must carry health and safety documents on site, using VisTab, where all information and paperwork is contained in electronic form on the tablet, reports can be generated.

In the event of a disaster, using a tablet also has a practical application. “The tablet is portable and doesn’t need power to run. Visitor information is held in the cloud and survives, and you can access it on any smart phone.”

“It was after the Canterbury earthquakes that Dave decided to investigate developing software that would tell a business owner who was in their building at any one time.”

It was when Dave sold another of his companies, a debt collection business to focus solely on Vistab, that he met Moore Stephens Markhams director Graeme Rhodes.

“Graeme helped facilitate the sale of that company. I chatted to him about where I wanted to go with VisTab and how I should structure the business. He also managed the financial transactions for the sale. As Graeme deals with a wide range of businesses, he has a breadth of knowledge and gave me very sound advice,” says Dave.

Growth and future-proofing are two topics Dave and Graeme discuss at their monthly meetings. “We are at the stage now we need to put into place a structure that will enable us to grow. Graeme is very good at understanding our business and where we want to go.”

Dave has some advice for would-be business owners. “If you’ve got an idea and a will, and you’re willing to work hard, take the risk and go for it. It’s incredibly satisfying.”

Published Summer 2015

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