Tip of the Week: How Secure is Your Office?
Keep Your Company Safe and Operational in Times of Crisis
Recently, there was a fire in the building where our Rampart Group office is located. We share the space with one other tenant who has a commercial business and nearby office space. The fire started in a downstairs area where the commercial business is located and was promptly extinguished by local fire fighters who responded within minutes. Experiencing an incident like this caused our team to think about the damage a fire or other disastrous incident could do to our ability to continue daily business operations. Our business reputation could also suffer if we were incapacitated and unable to provide prompt investigative and security consulting services to our clients.
At Rampart Group we have gone to great measures to secure our office space and all contents to include the information we collect and use on a daily basis. We hope you, as well, will take some time to consider ways to secure your business in the event of a natural disaster or human threat.
Here are 5 tips to keep your office safe and operational:
1. Complete a security audit – A building security audit looks for threats that could disrupt a facility and its business operations. A thorough audit or review provides a way for personnel to plan for security modifications to the building and/or develop a Crisis Management Plan. At Rampart Group, we call these Asset Protection Surveys that include a review of information security, personnel security, and physical security controls such as camera placement, locks, alarms, interior and exterior lighting, parking areas, etc.
2. Develop a Crisis Management Plan – This can be a simple plan that identifies how you respond and recover from a threatening or crisis situation. Important elements include identifying a Crisis Management Team consisting of key employees who are designated to manage significant threats and incidents. Understanding the potential threats to your office space and business operations is a key responsibility of your Crisis Management Team.
3. Fire alarms – Make sure you are aware of the location of fire alarms and have the ability to call 911 if you see or smell smoke in your building. Likewise, in the event of a human threat that requires police response, always call 911.
4. Consider a monitored alarm system – Many commercial office spaces offer staffed reception areas, guard security or carded building access, but an alarm system should be one of the first things to consider when enhancing office security. A significant deterrent to thieves, alarm systems can transmit emergency signals directly to your phone as well as the local police station.
5. Keep important hard copy documents locked and consider digital data cloud storage – It goes without saying that losing important documents could be disastrous for your business. Always keep hard copy sensitive information in a fire-safe locked drawer or file cabinet, and back up your data to an off-site hard drive or a secure cloud server.
6. Use effective lighting – Countless studies reflect that most burglaries take place in the evening or at night. Lighting and unobstructed windows are likely to make burglars feel observed and therefore deter them from attempting a burglary. Consider leaving some lights on and shades open when you leave the office for the day.
7. Have a standardized termination procedure – All too often we see businesses negatively impacted by disgruntled employees. Maintain a standardized practice to carefully deal with terminations that includes changing passwords and log in information. Consider re-keying your building if you engage in a hostile termination. Remember, you are not just protecting sensitive information and physical assets, but also your employees.
Consider our Asset Protection Survey to help you evaluate the security of your business.
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Chief Executive Officer
Phone: (360) 981-2703
PI License #3555
Executive Vice President
Phone: (360) 981-3397
PI License #4180
We at Rampart Group are committed to your security. Call 1-800 421-0614 or contact us today with your security or investigative needs.