When you think about safety in your warehouse, you may default to the ways you can make your processes safer — but there's more to it than that, including increasing physical security at your site. In short, you and your employees need to be able to rest assured that no harm will befall them or your property from either internal or external threats.
The question is, how do you tighten up security without significantly disrupting the processes that have helped your organization become a well-oiled machine? The following suggestions should help:
1) Install cameras, motion sensors and alarms
Basic security systems that you have not yet installed throughout your site can be a great way to detect or even deter potential threats before they arise, according to The Fulfillment Lab. If cameras are conspicuous, motion-sensing lights brighten up a darkened parking lot or doorway, and there's signage about alarm systems, would-be crooks might opt to simply move on instead of trying to gain entry to your warehouse.
2) Add access control
One of the easiest access points for thieves is doors that are left unlocked and unattended, the Fulfillment Lab said. For that reason, something as simple as adding a key code lock or even an RFID badge system to your facility can make a huge difference in terms of who has access to your building, or even certain areas within it, because you have far greater control over who goes where.
3) Put up a perimeter fence
Depending on the state of the property your warehouse sits on, installing a fence around the whole building, or just the parking lot and loading dock area, can be helpful, according to Supreme Security Systems. Here, too, it just adds an extra impediment for people who aren't supposed to be there. This can be a costly investment, but if a fence deters even one large-scale theft attempt, it can be seen as paying for itself.
4) Set up an emergency plan and test your systems
When exterior threats — or interior threats, for that matter — emerge, you need to know how to react appropriately, Supreme Security Systems added. You should be prepared to test your alarm systems and conduct response drills so you and your employees can be confident they will respond to a potential security issue with cool heads.
5) Hire security
If you're truly concerned about your building's ongoing security capabilities, it can be a good idea to hire one or two guards who can work when your building is mostly or entirely empty, according to ExploreWMS. Here, too, their mere presence can be a deterrent, but you'll also have someone on site who can respond to a threat appropriately.
6) Talk to your employees about the importance of these efforts
Implementing any of these changes can alter your operations in a number of ways, and you'll need to communicate with your employees about why these changes are being made and what they should do to adjust, ExploreWMS noted. That way, you can be confident you won't lose productivity even as you shift some of your processes.