If your company doesn't have a central corporate security plan in place, it's time to consider one immediately. The variety of threats that can endanger an organization today is intimidating, and rather than ignoring the potential for problems, security leaders and management professionals should tackle the danger head-on.
If your firm does have a security plan, it's worth revisiting the strategy, either internally or with the help of a professional security consulting firm. A document drawn up years ago may be missing some key elements attuned to today's security climate, or simple oversights may have led to inadequate preparedness. Whatever the reason for a less-than-comprehensive strategy, the right time to amend it is always "as soon as possible."
The following are a few areas of security plans that could fall by the wayside. Every company's needs will vary, and these three examples only scratch the surface of potential additions to corporate strategies. It often takes a full review by a security consultant to find the gaps in an organization's existing strategy.
A lack of flexibility: When a single corporate entity operates multiple facilities, its overall security strategy can suffer if the rules contained within are too specific. As Buildings magazine pointed out, businesses that micro-manage security requirements may find that each office, residential building, factory or other property is unable to keep up with the rules within the document.
For example, some facilities' access-management systems will naturally be better served by having dedicated security personnel at the entrance every day. If such a rule is written into a company-wide plan, however, it may cause problems at other locations where requirements differ. Plans should be able to accommodate all the buildings where they'll be in effect.
Failure to future-proof: A plan that works today may be obsolete tomorrow, causing unforeseen future problems for the company. Facility Executive magazine recommended that security plans should include elements that can change if the company expands or moves, or if a new piece of technology is introduced. Strategies that mandate certain procedures may fall apart over time as hardware reaches the end of its useful life and new threats rise to the fore.
There's obviously no way to prepare for exact changes that have yet to be revealed, but Facility Executive magazine listed a few common-sense steps planners can take. For instance, any security tools that are implemented as integral parts of the current security approach should receive careful investigation: Do changes seem to be on the horizon? Furthermore, plans should contain top-down flexibility in case a future leader envisions changes.
Lack of connection to the business: While security strategies play a unique role in an overall company strategy, keeping people and property safe, the best way to ensure a plan's success may be to integrate it closely with the way the organization runs. The Security Executive Council explained that especially in lean, efficiency-first companies, every department should measure its costs and effects and justify its operations, security among them.
Executive buy-in is critical in ensuring a security plan succeeds. When leaders can't determine the purpose for every dollar going to the security team, they may cut off funding needed for important processes. Plans should therefore not make the assumption that the department will always receive all the support it seeks and report clearly all the ways its operations help.
Working in partnership
Internal leaders can turn to third-party security consultants to determine if their strategies are on the right track. Experts with a background in safeguarding different organizations may find issues the business's own managers have missed and recommend ongoing improvements that help the business defend its operations against a wide variety of potential threats. If a crisis strikes without such a comprehensive plan in place, the results could be disastrous.