Business owners who need to install or update physical security controls in their facilities can be overwhelmed by the technology and systems available. How can they know what their building needs, and what systems are best suited to those needs?

A physical security consultant can be a business owner’s best investment. If you’re considering hiring a security consultant, here are some guidelines:

What does a physical security consultant do?

Business owners and managers are experts in their industries, but generally on physical security. While they may have some ideas about their facility’s security needs, they recognize that effective security in today’s uncertain risk environment, they need expertise when it comes to making sound security decisions.

A qualified security consultant will conduct a thorough assessment of your building and perimeter property and identify any security vulnerabilities that need addressing. They will ask you about your security concerns and develop a security plan customized to your specific needs. An experienced security consultant can save you money in the long run by helping you select systems and equipment that suit your needs and budget, and will scale as your company grows.

A security consultant can also provide a valuable perspective on existing security policies and procedures, help you upgrade or establish policies if necessary, and assist in developing and delivering security training for employees.

Critical asset identification

Prioritizing the deployment of security measures based on the assets that are most critical to the business’s operations.

Threat and vulnerability assessments

Business owners and managers are responsible for limiting and managing risks from identifiable threats to the extent possible.

Risk mitigation strategies

Risk mitigation strategies link assets to threats. Action plans to lessen or reduce the adverse impacts of known or perceived risks inherent to the business are developed this way.

Crime Prevention through environmental design

Crime prevention through environmental design (CPTED) maximizes landscape and building design techniques to reduce vulnerability to crime.

When selecting a security consultant, the following factors should be considered:

  1. The consultant should have a strong, verifiable track record and expert knowledge of security industry best practices.
  2. The consultant should be independent—not someone who represents a specific company or technology solution who is obligated to sell products or services that may not be in your best interest.
  3. The consultant should take the time to understand your business and develop cost-effective solutions unique to your security needs.

No one likes to pay a consultant until after an incident occurs, and then it’s too late. Failure to adequately plan and respond to potential security threats can cost a business owner dearly in increased insurance premiums, liability, business recovery and reconstruction costs, and even injury or loss of life.

In today’s litigious world more and more businesses are being sued for negligent or inadequate security. Working with a security consultant to identify security vulnerabilities and develop policies, procedures, and protocols to address security issues is an effective way to reduce liability and improve the overall security and safety of your business.