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How to Conduct a Security Risk Assessment for Your Business

Businesses are faced with all kinds of security risks from minor crimes such as vandalism and break-ins to more serious crimes of terrorism and violence.

As a business owner and employer, it is your responsibility to protect the people, the property, and its assets by putting in place the right security measures.

The first and foremost step in doing so is to conduct a security risk assessment so that you can have a better idea of the associated risks along with your strengths and weaknesses.

Businesses that do not carry out security risk assessments may never fully identify the potential risks that they face and consequently are unable to deploy effective security measures. Even if they implement a high-security system, chances are that they aren’t using the resources most efficiently and are not targeting the high-risk areas and their specific vulnerabilities, since they are mostly unaware of the risks.

To be sure that you have the right security measures in place that cater to your unique security risks, businesses must carry out a security risk assessment and conduct it in the right way. By doing so, you’ll make sure your business and everyone and everything in it stays safe from threats, risks, and all kinds of danger:

WHAT IS A SECURITY RISK ASSESSMENT?

A security risk assessment is a process that enables business owners to assess and evaluate their current security measures and get a better understanding of the security risks that lie ahead.

The main role of this assessment is to determine how well the current security measures are at mitigating the risks and keeping everyone and everything safe and secure.

A security risk assessment is a formal document that has all the information related to the security risks faced by a business and the steps taken to minimise them.

It consists of a variety of different criteria which include what the risks are, where they are taking place, what are the chances of the risks manifesting, what measures are in place to mitigate them, whether they are a priority, and whether the risk has been fixed.

All of these are incredibly important criteria for a security risk assessment for businesses as they help them go through the current security measures and any threats they may be facing in the present or future.

For better understanding, the document may also include a colour-coded chart that can be used to evaluate the likelihood of the risk and the severity of the consequences.

WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR A SECURITY RISK ASSESSMENT?

As a business owner and employer, it is your responsibility to ensure the safety and security of everyone and everything on your premises, and the best starting point for it is to conduct a security risk assessment.

If you have the required skill and experience to conduct it yourself, you may do so, or you can appoint someone else with the relevant knowledge to conduct it on your behalf. Regardless, even if the job is delegated to someone, the ultimate responsibility lies on the shoulders of the owners and management of the business.

According to the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, the business owner or employer must take the required steps ‘for the effective planning, organisation, control, monitoring, and review of the preventive and protective measures.’

The minimum requirement states that you must:

  • Identify the risks and hazards,
  • Determine who the risks and hazards could affect and how serious they are,
  • Take action to minimise or eliminate the risks and hazards.

After the risks have been identified and the steps have been taken to minimise their potential effects, the responsible person must communicate the findings of the risk assessment with the relevant people.

Communicating becomes more effective when the relevant persons are involved in the risk assessment process at every stage and are aware every step of the way.

The person or persons carrying out the security risk assessment are often in the best position to provide details of the findings as they have fully participated in the completion of the assessment.

Although a security risk assessment can be carried out by anyone with the relevant knowledge, additional training may be required to make sure that the review is completed successfully and most effectively.

WHEN TO CONDUCT A SECURITY RISK ASSESSMENT FOR YOUR BUSINESS?

A security risk assessment is usually carried out before a certain task or activity to minimise, eliminate, or most efficiently control any associated risks that may put the health and safety of those involved in danger.

Once the assessment is completed, it must be periodically reviewed based on the level of risk involved and in case the current findings are no longer valid. Reviewing the assessment also becomes important when there are any specific changes to a related task or activity that might affect the level or nature of risk in any way.

Reviewing must also be done following any accident, incident, or mishap so that the level of risk could be measured and the necessary adjustments and amendments could be made.

WHY IS A SECURITY RISK ASSESSMENT IMPORTANT FOR YOUR BUSINESS?

A security risk assessment is an important part of your business’s security as it helps manage risk and is a primary tool in doing so. As a business owner or employer, it is your legal responsibility that you must document the findings of the assessment if your business employs five or more people.

The main purpose of a security risk assessment is to:

  • Identify any health and safety hazards and assess the risks within the workplace,
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of existing security measures and how good they are at mitigating or eliminating risk,
  • Make sure additional security measures are implemented if the risk priority is high,
  • Allocate further resources if need be.

Conducting an effective security risk assessment and employing adequate security measures don’t only minimise or eliminate risk but also help reduce costs for a business.

If a business fails to have the required security measures and controls in place, it could face financial losses due to fines and legal action, as well as with respect to damaged equipment, business downtime, and negative publicity.

HOW TO CONDUCT A SECURITY RISK ASSESSMENT FOR YOUR BUSINESS?

The process of conducting a security risk assessment is thorough and is done to ensure that your business is safe and secure from all kinds of safety and security threats. The process is usually broken down into four simple steps:

Identifying risks

The first step for conducting a security risk assessment is to identify all the risks that your business faces. It is a crucial step that not only helps identify the vulnerabilities in your business but also determines the required security measures to take.

Identifying risks may include assessing the crime rate in the area where the business is situated, the nature of the crime, the number of people who have access to the building, the number of entrances and exits, and whether the business premises is shared or not.

Assessing the threats and vulnerabilities

Once all the risks to your business have been identified, the next step is to assess all the threats and vulnerabilities. This is carried out by analysing the likelihood of the risks occurring and determining which of them are the most damaging to your business.

Prioritising all the risks helps devise a clear plan of action on what issues to tackle first and how to mitigate them. This gives you a better understanding of the potential risks and allows you to be better prepared to face such threats.

Reviewing the current security measures

An important part of conducting a security risk assessment is to review and analyse your current security measures. This is an incredibly important step as it helps you decide what action to take and whether or not the current security plan is sufficient.

When doing so, you must review your security systems and gauge their effectiveness 24/7, not just during business hours. Crime doesn’t take a break and neither should your security system.

You need to make sure that your business has the appropriate alarm systems in place along with access control security to keep unauthorised access at bay. Security lighting is also vital when securing your business during the night time.

It is also very important to make sure that all the security systems are well-maintained and fully functional so that they can be relied upon throughout the day and night.

Reviewing the operating procedures

After the physical security measures have been evaluated, you need to assess and review the operating procedures put in place for safety and security.

These procedures may include whether there are any security checks for out-of-hours business staff, if there are an adequate number of security personnel deployed throughout the day, and if the staff members are trained to handle unforeseen circumstances.

It is very important to work closely with the staff members when reviewing the operating procedures to make sure that they fully grasp and understand their roles and feel safe at work.

SECURITY MEASURES FOR BUSINESS SAFETY AND SECURITY

It is detrimental for a business to have adequate security measures in place in order for it to thrive and be successful. The safety and security of the employees, staff members, visitors, property, and assets all contribute towards the growth of the business, making all of them important pillars for corporate success.

Conducting a security risk assessment is a very important part of business security as it lays the groundwork for what security measures to use and implement.

When choosing the best business security measures, you may opt for the services of a professional security provider such as Calder Security for a more holistic and professional approach.

Some of the most common security systems used in businesses include:

Security alarm systems and key holding

Security alarm systems are a fundamental part of corporate security. They work by making a lot of noise and attracting attention when they detect unusual activity. They come in several different types and are fitted with sensors that detect movement.

With a security alarm system, your business is much less likely to get broken into and burgled and even petty crime such as vandalism is kept under control.

Most advanced security alarm systems used these days are smart and can be accessed from anywhere in the world using a mobile phone, tablet, or laptop, as long as you have a good internet connection on both ends.

For added safety and security, these alarm systems may also be monitored 24/7 by a professional alarm monitoring service and police response may be activated.

In professional key holding services, the complete set of keys to the property is kept at a secure, offsite location that adds an extra layer of protection to your business’s security. This way, in case of an emergency or an untoward incident, you are always guaranteed access to your premises.

CCTV security systems

CCTV (Closed-Circuit Television) cameras are one of the most effective deterrents against all kinds of security threats and risks. The mere presence of a security camera is enough to scare away potential criminals and keep your business property safe and protected.

CCTV cameras can be placed on all the key points of the premises and used to keep a watchful eye on all the events happening in their field of view. The footage recorded using these cameras can also be used as evidence during legal proceedings and can help catch the perpetrators.

There are various types of CCTV cameras to choose from based on their shape, size, and functionality. You can choose the best ones depending on where you intend to place them and the level of control and flexibility required. You may also opt for professional CCTV monitoring for added security and protection.

Access control systems

Access control systems are door security systems used to keep unauthorised access at bay. Particularly beneficial for properties that receive a lot of footfall such as big businesses, access control systems can be as simple as a mechanical lock and key or as advanced as a biometric system.

Modern access control systems are filled to the brim with features and functionality and provide an unmatched level of control to the business management in terms of who they want to let in their premises.

These systems are not only useful in keeping unauthorised access under control but also provide valuable insights that can be used for attendance purposes and general checks.

Other types of security measures that businesses can benefit from include:

CONTACT CALDER SECURITY

At Calder Security, we provide a comprehensive range of security solutions that include not just professional installation but also monitoring, maintenance, and repair services.

We are members of the Master Locksmith Association (MLA), approved members of the Security Systems and Alarms Inspection Board (SSAIB), and also conform to all the relevant British and EU Standards.

We follow all the best practices in the industry and install only high-quality, state-of-the-art security systems.

We offer various levels of monitoring via a 24-hour monitoring centre using Dualcom and BT Redcare signalling, which is the most secure alarm monitoring system and the largest supplier of intelligent alarm signalling services in the UK.

We understand the importance of having to regularly maintain security systems since the inability to do so might result in serious faults and consequent vulnerabilities in your property’s security.

We provide professional maintenance checks and reminders for when the checks are due to help you stay compliant with the law and work fast to restore your security systems to excellent condition.

We offer a 24-hour call-out service for customers and can also repair systems not installed by us. Our engineers are highly skilled and can restore faulty systems to full working order in one visit.

Contact us here or call us at 0800 612 9799 to talk to our experts right away!

 

Photo by Scott Webb on Unsplash