Office managers, facilities managers and those who are in charge of retail outlets on a day-to-day basis usually have responsibility for the basic surveillance systems that are in use. Unless you work in a big business which has its own dedicated security manager, the job of keeping an eye on employees and contractors who might be on your premises will fall to you. Only in very small enterprises will you find that the owner of the business is responsible for all security matters. The trouble is that many shop and office managers have little idea about surveillance and what it can do for a company.
What should you know if you need to improve the level of surveillance that is operating where you work?
One of the most important things that office managers can do to prevent crime and industrial espionage on their premises is to install a sound access control system. Retail managers need a similar system to prevent the public from accessing private areas, like the storeroom, for example. Entry code systems are popular but these are easy for determined criminals to overcome. Just observing a valid member of staff going in or out is usually enough for the code to be cracked.
Opt for swipe card entry systems to control access more fully. If a member of staff is fired or loses their card, then their one can be rescinded without causing problems for any of the rest of your staff. In situations where you need to provide access to members of the public from time-to-time or for deliveries to be made to your premises, an intercom system is preferable. Intercoms allow you to verify the identity of the person coming in and to deny entry when appropriate.
In many retail environments, CCTVsystems have been used for years. It can be equally as useful in other workplaces, too. Many Australian offices now have webcams installed around them so that managers can keep an eye on employees to ensure that they are working as they should and not attempting to go into areas which are restricted to them. It also allows managers the option of producing evidence of wrongdoing, if this becomes necessary, for example, because of workplace theft.
Although hiring people to watch over your work premises is a more expensive option than using technology it has a big advantage. Security guards are a deterrent. Not only do they stop pilfering from employees but they will send a signal to career criminals that your workplace is not worth bothering with.