'Road Map' Can Help Guide Security Plans

  July 23, 2012

This is Casey Laughman, managing editor of Building Operating Management magazine. Today's tip is that a security road map can help guide your planning and preparation.

"Be prepared" may be a cliché, but when lives are on the line the advice is well worth heeding. For facility managers and security directors, being prepared means more than having security measures in place to address the biggest risks to life and property. It means having a strategic road map that will guide security decisions and enable a facility manager or security director to make the right choices in an emergency.

Funding for security measures is very difficult to come by — until something goes wrong. Concern for security rises when senior executives read about an incident at another facility. And it's up to the facility manager or security director to be prepared with the right answers if questions come from higher up in the organization.

A strategic security road map can help provide those answers, says Robert Lang, assistant vice president, strategic security and safety, and chief security officer, Kennesaw State University. That road map is based on a careful, ongoing analysis of facility needs as well as technologies, policies and procedures that can address those needs. Lang's road map extends five years into the future. He knows he won't get funding for everything he'd like to enhance the security program, at least not right away. But the road map shows what he'd like to do and when.

Taking a strategic approach helps facility managers and security directors to avoid making poor decisions if an emergency leads top management to ask for action. The road map may not have been submitted for approval, but it should be ready in case something happens and you need a solution quickly.


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