Protecting your business against current and future health and safety risks should be your company’s top priority. From dealing with COVID to protecting your workplace from potential security threats, you have much to consider. To guide your strategy in delivering a safer, healthier and overall better experience for your employees, visitors and customers, you need to ask yourself the following questions

  • How has your business changed over the past year?

The world has dramatically changed in the past year, and likely, so has your business. The way your business operates may be different than it has in the past. For example, your workforce may be fully remote or perhaps you have implemented a hybrid or flexible work model.

The pandemic accelerated a shift towards a more flexible workspace, meaning organizations had to re-evaluate their on-site operations to best accommodate their employees. Is your business only letting in so many employees back to the office? Is your organization allowing visitors? Along with those questions, it is important to ask how your business has evolved to meet those changes.

Before you begin implementing safety measures, you have to understand where you were, where you’d like to be, and the capacity needed to get there. Defining your answer to how your business has changed over the past year will help you develop a more holistic understanding of the potential vulnerabilities in your safety and security strategy.

  • Based on these changes, what steps do you need to take to continue operating safely?

People are your most valuable asset, so what steps is your company taking to ensure their safety? Start by assessing your current environment to better understand the processes and procedures you need to put in place for your people to continue to operate safely. Ask yourself, how are people moving through the building? Where are the common areas people are gathering? Your answers can guide you when you begin implementing processes. Security technology such as visitor management systems, access control and video surveillance can help your company address these questions. Through these systems, you can revise traffic flow, modify room spacing and stagger employee shifts.

Implementing these processes and systems impacts the health, safety and security of your visitors, employees and customers and your operations’ efficiency.

  • How do you fund these changes?

Depending on your industry and business area, there is significant emergency grant funding available through the American Rescue Plan to support security and safety investments. On March 11, President Biden signed a bill that provides $130 billion in funding to support K-12 schools, $40 billion for universities and colleges, $350 billion for government facilities and a significant amount of funding for healthcare and commercial businesses.

Reminder: Don’t forget the impact operations has on your business

Many times, we may consider safety first, but there is probably a lot you learned about security in the past year. With modified operations such as remote and hybrid work, you almost certainly can identify some security enhancements that are required to operate more effectively. . While many organizations have enforced basic prevention methods such as masks and hand sanitizer for employees who return to the office, they also need to implement processes to identify and isolate people with potential symptoms. If an employee contracts a cough and fever, how do you go about isolating employees or visitors who had contact? Implementing technology solutions can allow you to automate visitor management and employee access and integrate them into your existing workflows.

The security decisions business leaders make today will significantly affect how their business operates moving forward. With how quickly we are returning to the “new normal,” it’s essential to consider the long-term implications of their decisions. Before adopting long-term solutions, assess where you are as an organization. Then, as you build new policies and processes, consider what technologies could best support your company’s evolution.