Bradbury Group: three tips for spotting security flaws in your warehouse
Paul Sweeting is Technical Director of Bradbury Group, an industry leader in the manufacturing and installation of steel security doors and other physical security solutions. Here, he offers his advice for spotting flaws in warehouse security systems and how to tackle them.
Warehouses are a vital point in the supply chain, allowing retailers and businesses to store their goods in what should be a safe and secure environment. With e-commerce now accounting for 19% of total business turnover in the UK (Statista), the demand for warehousing space has never been higher. In fact, according to Stowga, there is 2.1 billion square feet of warehouse space in the UK.
However, with greater demand comes greater opportunity for crime, and warehouses are often targeted for theft. So, below are my tips for spotting the security flaws in your warehouse to prevent break-ins.
Test and secure all points of entry
Warehouses have varying degrees of daily activity; some are constantly busy with staff coming and going, while others are relatively quiet and used mainly for storage. However, every warehouse has entrances, exits, windows, vehicular access points, and delivery bays, all of which will need proper security solutions.
Make a note of all these vulnerable areas and make sure they are fitted with the right doors and locks. Look for certified security doors, such as doors with LPS 1175 certification which is awarded by the Loss Prevention Certification Board (LPCB), to ensure they have undergone proper testing and are attack resistant. Regularly test all automated alarms, locking devices, and key controls to make sure they are fully operational, and repair any flaws immediately to keep trespassers from being able to enter the building.
Have the right monitoring systems in place
If you haven't already installed CCTV cameras around your warehouse, seriously consider doing so. Not only is 24-hour CCTV surveillance great for spotting illegal activity, so you can deal with it quickly and effectively, but having video evidence of the crime can also be very handy for making insurance claims. Being able to review a video of the break-in after the fact can also allow you to see how the perpetrators gained entry, what route through the warehouse they took, and other failings of your security so you can take steps to improve it.
Some CCTV systems even include night-vision, facial recognition, motion sensing, and glass-break detection, so consider what your warehouse security requirements are and take the time to find the right CCTV system for you.
Review your processes
There are so many potential flaws when it comes to warehouse security that it can be difficult to address them all without outside help. For example, many warehouses have high rates of staff turnover, and it's unfortunate that internal theft is common in these sorts of environments. It's important to communicate with employees to encourage them to be vigilant and report incidents of theft to their managers, as well as educate them about the procedures you have in place when it comes to internal theft to deter them. However, you may need to hire a professional security team to do this effectively.
A professional security team can also help you look for opportunities to automate processes, such as using scanners for inventory data entry, clocking in, and gaining access to restricted areas. Using technology rather than relying on manual input for these sorts of systems reduces the risk of theft, as they are less easy to manipulate. So, check whether you have room in your budget for a specialist security team who can help you review your current security systems and spot areas for improvement.
Regularly test your security doors, monitor your CCTV footage, and consider getting third party advice on how to improve your warehouse security to reduce the risk of break-ins and theft.
Gartner: CEOs Want Their CSCOs to Focus on Cost and Digital
Chief Supply Chain Officers (CSCOs) will be expected to double their efforts in cost optimisation and digital transformation if they are to best support the short and long-term growth of their businesses, according to CEOs surveyed by Gartner.
The research and advisory firm surveyed 199 top executives from supply chain intensive industries between July and December 2020. It found that, perhaps unsurprisingly, the pandemic has shifted the focus dramatically away from undefined innovation projects towards concrete goals to bring resilience and control to their value chain.
Around a fifth (17%) of business leaders said they want their supply chain chiefs to gain greater control over spend and cost saving, while 16% believe they should dedicate their efforts towards supply chain resiliency - both in response to the impact of the pandemic.
“CEOs are tasking their CSCOs to focus on navigating through the ongoing disruption and ensure business continuity,” said Thomas O’Connor, Senior Director Analyst with the Gartner Supply Chain practice. “This includes dealing with pandemic-related lockdowns in key markets, supply chain shortages – as seen in the semiconductor industry – and challenges with the global flow of goods and increasing distribution costs.”
Supply Chain Digital Transformation Must be More Targeted
With 60% of those surveyed expecting an economic boom by the end of 2022, CEOs are also tasking CSCOs with redefining their transition to digital. The majority of respondents (80%) indicated they would be increasing year-on-year incitement in technology, but will aim to move away from nebulous digital transformation projects, instead focussing on targeted initatives.
CEOs said they need their supply chain chiefs to identify where and how digital can best support the business within the context of their specific industry or organisation. Areas most commonly cited were ecommerce/ebusiness (16%), customer interactions (9%), data analytics (9%) and customer experience (7%).
CSCOs must Prepare for Pandemic’s Impact on Business Change
More than two thirds of executives surveyed by Gartner said the pandemic had been a pivotal moment in realigning their business, with 79% expecting the outbreak to leave a lasting and transformational impression on the behaviour of society, and their organisation and individuals.
“Already, a range of companies have committed to social responsibility and sustainability goals – a huge integration challenge for supply chain leaders that manage global networks,” O’Connor added. “This means supply chain leaders need to establish metrics and goals for themselves and their partners, and ensure their targets are met across the whole value chain.”
This represents an enormous challenge for CSCOs, who will be at the forefront of managing and defining the evolution of their own organisations, as well as those of their supply ecosystem and partners throughout the value chain.