How could a university leverage the benefits of geofencing on campus to improve student life and safety?


Geofencing is a service that guides a device to trigger an action when a certain location is accessed. Geofencing is a virtual boundary that may help a device user access certain regions by sending security alerts to designated persons. Geofencing is a location-based service that helps a device like a mobile device enter or leaves a virtual boundary within a certain location. The device could be using RFID, Wi-Fi, or GPS. The location within which the device operates is called a geofence. The established boundaries can be used to define geographical boundaries to customers close to the institution (Web Fix, 2020). The system operates by setting a perimeter around the location such that when a user exists or enters the boundary, they get an alert from the institution.

Benefits

One of the benefits that the university can utilize is to improve the safety of university students by tracking them within a certain location and sending them notifications when they enter zones that can pose a danger to them. This can be especially important when moving into certain locations overnight hours. This service is important because students will always know whether they enter a risky zone or a restricted region. The service can also be used when students are faced with sudden emergencies when on-campus. The data available through the service can be used to determine your location and enable the service to appear on time. For instance, when there is an accident, geofencing can be used to track the students’ location and take first aid services seamlessly (Web Fix, 2020). This is achieved through the geofence configuration that sends alerts to a mobile device through push notification, which enables the service providers to track students or the location of the security or safety incident. Location can be tracked based on the nature of the incident and the service needed.

This service is applicable for students because most students spend much time on their mobile phones. Therefore, they can be reached at the right time and place. Students who go beyond a certain virtual barrier can be reached out and given the necessary safety information. Moreover, the university can also inform the students on prevailing security threats and safety mechanisms they should take if the perceived safety incident happens (Rodriguez Garzon & Deva, 2014). For instance, if there is a fire in a certain building, students can be sent notifications and asked to assemble in certain designated locations.

There are certain instances when a university wants the students to get new information about a new product or service in the compass. For instance, if a new movie experience is being introduced over the week, the university does not need to notify the learners through the noticeboards. This means that students can receive an invitation when they reach the theatre. Moreover, if the university wants certain events on-campus to be supported by surrounding communities like companies, notifications can be sent to invite them to attend.

Other services that could be improved on-campus using geofencing are Wi-Fi connection services since devices are automatically connected to it, or they are sent notifications whenever they come closer or within the connection radius. Students do not have to keep logging in and out, or what happens is that they are automatically connected once they enter school geofence (Pešić et al., 2019). Moreover, geofencing technology can be used by the university in assisting the students in locating specific areas such as parking, various study locations, and other related services. These services make the campus friendly which improves the overall quality of life for the students.

Another benefit that a university can take advantage of is locating customers based on their location. Customers can be reminded to open up their app notifications to determine if they are already in a certain location. The business can focus on a certain location to establish characteristics of customers to direct them to the business and move ahead of competitors. The business may also look into the available product portfolio and map out more attractive to customers based on market information.

Moreover, universities can use the available information to save time when making decisions affecting students. Geofencing can be used to rack the number of times employees as instructors work and how much progress they are making on the projects allocated to them. This helps them determine the time that will be used for certain activities like transportation, studying, and breaks. The instructors can record the time taken for various activities as long as they are within a certain range. Moreover, geofencing can be used to monitor activities in a certain area. When they move beyond the mapped area, an alert is sent to the relevant and preventing access by unauthorized. This prevents misuse of organization property by tracking at all times. Moreover, employees are also given time cards to help record the time they take to complete a certain task (Web Fix, 2020).

Drawbacks

Despite the many benefits associated with geofencing, various drawbacks make it ineffective. One drawback is that it is dependent on the targeted individual data. This means that if a person does not switch it on, it would be difficult to determine what people are doing at a specific time when the service is switched off. Moreover, the students may be using the phone, but notifications can be switched off since it is annoying. Moreover, when used in an emergency where geofencing is too wide, it can be ineffective in sending needed emergency support like security since a lot of time may be used to locate the specific location of the emergency.

Moreover, information and data need to be used, which can invade personal privacy. In addition, turning notifications on all the time can be annoying since they may continue to receive unnecessary notifications. Geofencing may not be effective for employees since they might feel uncomfortable if they are tracked wherever they are. Therefore, companies and institutions that seek to utilize this technology must be trained to understand it.

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