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Our office building has 2 entrances, but you can only access our office from the secondary entrance. I would like to direct them to walk to the the secondary entrance (30 yds to left) and buzz in there, rather than buzz in where they are standing.

The main entrance panel looks like

enter image description here

I was thinking about covering the no 6 button with a metallic dymo label like this (with a concise message).

enter image description here

Considerations

  • People do not know their left from right
  • Needs to be simple - to buzz no 11, some people press 1 twice
  • The text needs to be concise so it's large enough to read
  • The landlord will allow a label, but will not replace the panel

I'm considering

Unit 6 go to
other entrance
<-- 30 yds

(If I don't specify our unit number, will people think the label refers to other units also?)

Any better solutions, or flaws with this?

  • Is there a door sign that corresponds to the button? If yes, why not add the message there? I would be confused if I read a sign, then looked for a button, only to discover that this button is disabled. – J_rgen Apr 6 '16 at 9:09
  • There are signs by the side of the panel, but nobody reads the signs - they know the unit they need and just press the buzzer. – Andy Joiner Apr 6 '16 at 10:17
  • Maybe if we didn't give out the unit number, people would be forced to read the sign. Unfortunately the unit number is in the public domain. – Andy Joiner Apr 6 '16 at 10:33
  • I may be my not-so-goood English understanding, but I can't get the whole idea. The two entrances has the same address? the "other door" has some distinct characteristic (some color or sign or name)? – Alejandro Veltri Apr 6 '16 at 14:49
  • The second door is not well marked or distinctive, other than having a similar panel with only 4 buttons - that panel does have labels under the numbers with the company names. – Andy Joiner Apr 6 '16 at 21:29
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In an ideal world, you'd be able to knock down a wall to allow access to your office from this door - as it's technically your unit number. But, as that's not ideal, you've got to work with what you've got!

Some considerations about your current label:

  • Which direction does the arrow point? Does it point directly to the other door? Some people could interpret the arrow as left, some as 'behind' eg. 180degrees from the sign. If the arrow points exactly to the door, I'd keep it.

  • You could simplify it even more. 'Other entrances' or 'other doors' might be unnecessarily complex. Simply 'Unit 6. <- Left 30 yards' would be more concise. You just need to get them away from this door, and walking to the left for a few seconds.

  • Is there any chance of providing feedback for the users at the second door? How about 'Looking for unit 6? You've found it!'. This feedback would reassure anyone unsure whether they've come the right way.

If possible, you could try out a few variations for a few weeks/months (depending on your amount of visitors, you need to get a decent sample obviously), and see what works the best.

Also, consider your users, are they regulars or usually new visitors? Do most only need a gentle reminder, or are you always providing new information? That does definitely change what content is most appropriate.

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