According to the FBI’s most recent data, there were almost eight million property crime offences in the United States in 2015, while the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) estimates roughly two million employees per year are affected by some form of workplace violence.
Don’t let your business become part of these statistics. June is National Safety Month, so it’s the perfect time to reassess your facility security measures and look for improved and efficient ways to help keep your staff, customers and assets safe and secure. Not sure where to start? Consider the following checklist with best practices to help protect your facility and staff.
Train and refresh employees
Just as your employees and staff are your number one business asset, they are also your first line of defence. Making sure your employees are aware of safety procedures and possible warning signs can help mitigate incidents and prepare employees in the event of an emergency.
By scheduling yearly security trainings and drills, you can make sure safety is top of mind for all staff, not just those who work in security or operations. It’s a great way to refresh current staff and inform new employees.
Regularly test fire, life safety and security systems
In addition to your safety procedures, it is important to regularly test your systems to ensure they are working properly and complying with local laws and safety codes. Make sure your system is also regularly inspected and maintained by an external security professional or inspector. They may spot something that you overlooked, or have more insight into new regulations and codes.
In addition to proactive testing, consider adding sensors to existing facility security systems to improve predictive maintenance and issues response timing. For example, today a sensor can alert you to a burst pipe or rising temperatures that could be linked to larger issues that may harm employees or assets and disrupt business operations.
|Making sure your employees are aware of safety procedures and possible warning signs can help mitigate incidents and prepare employees in the event of an emergency|
Address common hazards
According to new Safety and Security 101 Guides developed by the US Chamber of Commerce and Johnson Controls, the top five vulnerabilities for business owners include robbery and burglary, employee theft, liability, fire and emergencies and vandalism.
It is important to look at weaknesses specific to your business in each category and take actionable steps to address vulnerabilities. According to the top vulnerabilities guide, robbery is one of the most common crimes, with an estimated four burglaries happening every minute in the US. However, there are some simple things you can do to make your business a difficult target for potential robbers, such as keeping entries and parking lots well-lit. Even rethinking your landscaping can help provide a better line of sight and remove potential hiding places. However, one the biggest deterrents is the use of security cameras with clear signage announcing their presence.
Install technologies that work together
Safety and security solutions shouldn’t operate in a vacuum. To create a safer, smarter work environment and communicate critical information in an emergency, you should leverage technologies that work together.
Consider integrating your current solutions to gain greater security and operational intelligence. For example, an access control system could be integrated with video surveillance so that every time a key card is used, the video camera turns on to capture an image of the user. This can help ensure the person using the card has the right authorisation and restrict access to necessary personnel only.
While June is the perfect time to reassess your safety and security programme, continuing to be proactive can help keep your staff, customers and assets safe all year-round. What are you doing to prepare for National Safety Month?