If you’re navigating the fascinating world of corporate security, at one point or another, you’ll probably be tasked with coming up with an office security plan. Your employer will ask you to consider all the moving parts and design something that works for their particular workspace.
Now, the main thing you have to consider is that, even though offices might look alike, no two are the same. So even if you’ve already designed security plans before, you’ll probably need to start from scratch again.
However, we do want to point out that creating an office security plan and guidelines to go with it is no simple task. So take your time, see what works and what doesn’t, and what improvements and changes you can bring to the table.
Designing a Security Plan
When it comes to designing an office security plan, you’ll have your work cut out for you. Some of the most important things you need to think about are:
- Office policies
- Office hours
When we say accessibility, we mean security clearance. Basically, you need to interview some of the higher-ups and the management to find out who has access to what. Which employees can go into server rooms, who can access confidential files, communication rooms, and much more. That way, you’ll know who to give access to and to which areas.
You also need to know what the office policies are. What is the standard protocol when it comes to visitors, vendors, and clients? What kind of access do they have to the office building, and how far can they go? Also, check whether outsiders need to sign NDAs before going into the offices.
The next thing you should look at is office hours, which sounds straightforward, but it still needs to be on the record. What time does the office open, and who’s in charge of unlocking everything? Even if that person’s you, it still part of your job, and you need to keep records of these things.
On the flip side, who’s the one who’ll be closing down the offices, and do all the locking up? These questions will help you come up with a better plan, and you’ll be able to create a better accessibility schedule.
Lastly, you need to focus on the employees and talk to them about their security concerns and expectations. We’re not saying that you should interview everyone, because that could obviously take up a lot of time. However, you should know what security procedures they’re familiar with, and how much training they’d need to receive.
Creating a Behavior Guideline
One thing that’ll help you get your office security plan across is creating a behavior guideline for all employees. In it, you should clearly state what are the security expectations, ethical principles, and values, as well as a code of conduct. This document should be accessible to everyone in the company, and you should review it or update it every once in a while.
Another key component that every guideline should have is the contact information for the point person. That should obviously be you and one or a few more people from other departments. It could be someone from the HR department if the company has one or someone from senior management.
Physical Security Certifications
Depending on the company you’re working with, you might need to work on getting them some physical security certifications. These will vary from one workplace to the next, as well as country to country.
However, some of the most common certificates your company might need to have include:
Before finalizing your plan, make sure to check which certificates you’ll need, and start the process of getting them. That way, you can start off on the right foot, and your company will definitely thank you.
When it comes to cybersecurity in the workplace, you need to work with the IT department to create the right guidelines. You can coordinate with them, and learn more about the dangerous practices that employees should avoid.
However, without going into too much detail, some of the basics you should cover:
- Passwords — different ones for different accounts, and they should all be strong;
- BYOD — avoid working on personal devices;
- Shadow IT — make sure that all employees are using only company-approved apps and software;
Implementing Security Systems
One thing that no company or office should be without is a high-quality security system, which you’ll be in charge of implementing. Depending on the size and layout of the office, the number of employees, work hours, and so much more, you need to figure out the best security system.
That system should be a combination of cameras, security alarms, and access control. When it comes to choosing a surveillance system, you again need to consider the specific needs of the office before settling on a model. If you want to install them both indoors and outdoors, then you’ll either need two different types or something more versatile.
Security alarms are an absolute must in an office, no matter the size. You should choose one that you can remotely disable and enable, and that can be integrated with the cameras.
Training the Employees
For your office security plan to even have a shot at working, you can’t forget about training the employees. Unlike you, they most likely have zero security experience and need someone to show them how it’s done.
For one, you need to take care of the basics of safety training, which includes fire and earthquake drills, evacuation, and maybe even active shooter procedures. You should also explain to the employees how all the systems work, what’s being monitored, and by whom. Of course, you don’t have to go into too much detail, just enough to give them some peace of mind.
To Sum Up
Coming up with an office security plan is a challenging, but rewarding task. If you’re new to the whole thing, don’t let all the ins and outs overwhelm you, and take your time. Talk to your peers, ask others for advice, and do your research. With all those things combined, you’re guaranteed to succeed.
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