Staff safety should be a top priority for any businesses that employs staff who work at night. Those required to lock up and find their way home in the late hours may feel uncomfortable or unsafe doing so, which can not only affect team morale but lead to shift scheduling conflicts and higher staff turnover, ultimately impacting business operations.
The latest figures show that these concerns are not unfounded. The Australian Bureau of Statistics reported that in 2021-22, around 26 per cent of women and 22 per cent of men who experienced assault did so at work. Around 14,300 people also reported they experienced theft, unrelated to break-ins, at work.
Whether a business operates in the hospitality sector, has late-night trading hours or has dedicated staff who are willing to stay back and finish tasks, business owners need to make the safety of their team a top priority. This can be achieved by taking a step back and looking objectively at the security systems and protocols in place. The next step is to ask, ‘Is this enough, or should I be doing more?’
Engaging a licensed security professional can help to identify things that may be often overlooked. They will review the broader security needs of the business, which may include interviewing staff to determine what they consider issues and reviewing the amount of cash kept on the premises and how it leaves the premises. It is also important to regularly discuss security procedures with staff, to capture new and casual staff as well as reinforce best practices with the existing team.
Having an open conversation about security will help to address any issues before they arise and ensure that staff members are comfortable in their environment and understand why systems and technologies, such as CCTV cameras, are in place.
Security tips for business owners
Staff training is absolutely vital for businesses in the hospitality sector or companies that operate late into the night, and owners and managers should ensure all levels of staff are trained to confidently deal with a security incident. Let’s be honest, companies and hospitality venues can only operate effectively and profitably with the hard work and dedication of its staff, so their security is one of their most important priorities.
ADT Security has the following advice to help venue owners address security for their premises:
- Provide regular staff training to ensure all employees follow correct procedures in the event of a security incident. This should include how to respond to aggressive behaviour, what to do if the security system is activated, and who to call to report an incident.
- Maintain adequate staff levels at lock-up times. Staff will always feel safer at work if managers roster two or more staff members.
- Use a safe with a drop mechanism that allows periodic cash drops to minimise the amount of money kept in registers.
- Provide adequate interior and exterior lighting to illuminate dark areas around building entry points and car parks.
- Install an obvious video surveillance system that serves as both a powerful visual deterrent and helps to identify possible crimes.