The threat of crime continues to be a big concern for small businesses. Criminals are constantly looking for loopholes, security lapses and cunning ways to steal from hardworking small business owners.
Your organisation is at its weakest when it’s just starting out – resources are often limited, owners are worried about who to trust and thieves see start-ups as an easy target.
But this doesn’t mean that your business has to be vulnerable. There are several steps you can take to eliminate the risks you may face and ensure that your business is protected.
Perform a risk assessment
Any security audit starts with pinpointing areas of vulnerability. Carry out a full evaluation of your company premises. This can provide you with invaluable information of any possible security issues in addition to areas that may require improved security.
Ensure your premises are secured
This may sound blatantly obvious, but it is amazing how many businesses do not have the basics covered. Make sure you have an alarm installed – not only is it a deterrent to criminals but having an alarm fitted can also lower your insurance premiums.
Check your access points – strengthen doors, fit window locks and put up security lighting. Each of these measures can discourage thieves, because most break-ins are unplanned. Alternatively, if access points are particularly susceptible, consider installing CCTV to cover any blind spots.
Introduce access control points
Access control can provide business owners with added peace of mind, because they are able to know exactly who is able to access their premises and it also prevents unsanctioned entrances.
Doors should be reinforced with security codes, and staff badges could be introduced. In addition, visitors could be provided with “visitors” badges upon entering the premises.
Use sign-in books
Sign-in books provide a record of each person who has visited your premises on any given day. These books can be referenced in the event of a security breach, showing you exactly who was on-site when the breach occurred.
Visitors should also sign the book and provide their full names, car registration details (where applicable) and the times of their arrival and departure. Sign-in books should be compulsory in most businesses in case of a fire.
Seek professional advice
If you are still having worries about securing your business then it is imperative that you speak to a security professional. There are expert companies who can conduct a security audit on your premises and then advise you on loss prevention and risk mitigation strategies
For a more cost effective solution, speak to your local council or police station. They will be able to provide you with more advice on what methods of crime are taking place in your area and how to protect yourself.
Securing your business premises is one measure that cannot be ignored, particularly if you are just starting out. Whilst it may be another blow to an already tight budget, peace of mind is priceless.