Maintaining a safe and secure working environment is one of the biggest priorities of the facilities management function. Security services include everything from external security systems to fully-trained front-of-house staff, ensuring the welfare of those who work in a building, as well as the overall environment, is a huge responsibility.
There are many pre-conceptions linked to the term ‘office security’ and ‘security services‘. Many will assume this means things such as external CCTV, the presence of a security officer and some form of building access system. Whilst this is all correct, the breadth of elements that can be captured within this area is now extensive, thanks in the main to the development of technological solutions to help promote safety and security.
Why think about workplace security?
In simple terms, workplace security is important because there are potentially significant implications of a breach. There are three key areas to think about when planning a building security strategy, each with specific needs and potential outcomes to mitigate against.
- Employees – a focus on safety shows that as an employer, you are committed to creating a secure, transparent and supportive culture; this includes keeping the workplace safe from unauthorised access and ensuring the correct building access rights are allocated to individuals.
- Physical Assets – this includes the ability to keep office equipment such as laptops, hard drives and other physical technology and equipment secure, as well as demonstrating that you place value in the personal property of your staff by offering a safe environment in which it can be stored.
- Business operations – ensuring the right security protocols are in place to maintain business continuity is critical to avoid the implications of operational interruption; this could be as a result of a technology, data or physical breach.
Creating a culture of workplace safety
Whilst building safety and security accountability may sit within facilities management, there is a responsibility on everyone who uses a space to be aware of the relevant policies that apply, to be vigilant in their own behaviour and to understand how concerns can be raised. There are a number of roles in a typical office structure that can support this requirement.
Front of house and reception staff can be key to re-enforcing a secure culture among employees. They can also help orient visitors and create a welcoming experience for anyone entering the building. This group of staff also have an important role as a gatekeeper between the front of the office and more secure areas, meaning they can ensure any necessary policies or other documentation, such as NDAs, are read and signed at the appropriate time ahead of wider building access.
Technology is increasingly an enabler of building security, both internally and externally. Whilst image capture such as CCTV still has its place, innovative new tech can now provide enhanced security service features.
Advances in CCTV systems can capture capacity and body-count whilst thermal imaging can ensure those entering a building are both healthy enough to do so and are showing no signs of a temperature, and also aren’t carrying anything that could cause harm to others in the building.
Computer software can be deployed to set access rights, manage building attendance and ensure visibility of who is moving wherein a particular space.
Alarms and sensors can help enforce restrictions in place, alerting members of the security or building management team to potential breaches or issues within the building perimeter.
Developing a holistic security service solution
There are many providers of individual elements of building security services – CCTV companies, security personnel firms and software providers offering a range of tech-based solutions. However, this means dealing with multiple suppliers, disparate KPIs and wide-ranging management reporting which can create a complicated landscape in which to provide assurance that a holistic security approach is being delivered.
Building safety and security is a 360o requirement and facilities management providers are uniquely placed to be able to support robust internal processes with a whole range of ancillary services. From initial requirements scoping to agreeing on outcomes, an FM-based security solution can bring together people, technology and processes to deliver a safe and secure working environment for all building users.
Talk to RFM today about our leading security services and start creating a safer, more secure environment for you people, your assets and most importantly, your business operations.