Your business needs to be prepared for anything, even the most unexpected disaster. You must consider common risks, such as criminal activity or natural disasters. To protect your company against such threats, it is important that you have effective security preparation and disaster response plans.
Without prior planning, you leave your company open to financial adversity, especially if you are forced to close operations for a period of time. In addition, without a proper plan to cope with a disaster situation, your company may face lawsuits from clients, distributors or employees claiming negligence.
Unfortunately, manufacturing firms are often the target of theft or vandalism crimes. In many cases, the best way to prepare for a potential security threat is to take preventive steps to secure your facility. Assess your current security level and make improvements where necessary; though not all security threats can be avoided, some situations can be prevented with appropriate preparation:
- Advise management and employees to report any suspicious persons or activity in or around the building.
- Establish and follow visitor control procedures (e.g., mandatory sign-ins, name badges, escorts, and orientation).
- Survey locks, fences, exterior lights and other physical security devices to ensure that they are in place where needed and in proper operating condition. Establish a monthly inspection of your security perimeter and key protective features of your facility.
- Pay special attention to areas where you are storing hazardous materials. These areas should be properly secured and inventoried. Limit the handling of these materials to essential personnel and ensure that everyone knows safe handling and storage procedures.
- Evaluate critical locations in your facility for proper security, including the electric, telephone and gas units, building entrances, transformers, and areas where raw materials or finished products are stored.
- If your facility has a security/fire alarm system, be sure it is operating properly and that key personnel know how to arm and disarm it.
- Make sure that fire suppression systems are regularly inspected and maintained. Also, be sure that a sufficient number of trusted personnel know how to activate, operate and shut them down.
- Closed-circuit television (CCTV) can serve as an excellent crime deterrent, and when the system is equipped with a recorder it can help solve crimes.
- Review your procedures for issuing facility keys and access cards. At a minimum, keep lists of who has been issued keys/cards and have a procedure for handling a situation when a troubled employee is terminated without returning them.
- Discuss security with your local police department. Police departments are often very willing to provide information and support to businesses and industries.
- Have your local fire department conduct a pre-planned visit to your building. While there, they can identify potential hazards and plan fire suppression priorities.
Keep your company, staff and clients safe with disaster preparedness.