Spring Clean Your Business Security

As spring blossoms anew, the changing season brings a range of benefits (and challenges) to you and your business. Sunnier weather and warmer temperatures lead to a boost in tourism and hospitality, while Easter and Summer holidays keep our kids unoccupied and needing amusement. Studies have shown that hotel occupancy rates more than double in this period, while restaurants, cafes, theme parks, fairs, and cinemas all thrive during the warmer months.

While seasonal changes may bless your business with increased traffic and more prosperity, the improved conditions do not come without their drawbacks. For example, excess drinking and celebration can easily get out of hand, especially with high levels of heat causing tempers to fray. In the same vein, bored teenagers may trespass on your property and vandalise important assets, or thieves might take advantage of busy staff to pocket items unseen.

So, while many are freshening up and cleaning out their premises before the summer months arrive, now is the perfect time to cast an eye over your security measures as well. Whether that means reviewing your surveillance systems, upgrading your access control arrangements, or investing in manned security guarding to shield your business from harm – a robust security plan is vital to keep your business running smoothly over the warmer months.

In our latest blog, we’ll consider why business security is important, and how it can be improved to better protect your personnel, assets, and property. Finally, we’ll explore how Churchill can bring our industry-leading approach to ‘spring clean’ your business security this year.


Why Should I Review My Business Security?

Security is critical to protecting your business from criminal activity. In 2022, an estimated 28% of businesses suffered from crime, with theft, vandalism, and burglary among the most common offences. Perhaps most concerning is that many businesses suffer from repeat instances of crime, with 1/3 of affected businesses being a victim every month, and 17% of victimised premises suffering from theft every single day. While singular incidents can be easily dismissed, repeat crimes will quickly build up huge financial losses.

Depending on the type of your premises, your business will face different security threats. Retail centres and restaurants are plagued by stealing from both customers and staff, whereas offices and warehouses must deal with the threat of burglaries and arson, while pubs and nightclubs see higher rates of violent and sexual offences. The consequences of these crimes range from losing thousands of pounds worth of equipment, to staff coming to harm and even the entire business premises burning to the ground.

As criminals get smarter and their plots get more elaborate, businesses need to be ready to combat the multitude of threats that could disrupt their safe and successful operations. Consequently, it’s important to regularly review your business security – update security systems, optimise policies and procedures, and invest in more advanced levels of protection to mitigate the risk of crime. Only by doing this, and staying one step ahead of criminals, can repeated losses be prevented.


How Can My Business Security Be Improved?

Here are some tried and tested methods to improve your protection and ensure security best practice.

1. Upgrade CCTV Capabilities

Many businesses already have surveillance in place, with as many as 96% of the UK’s CCTV cameras owned by private businesses and homeowners. However, existing systems are often flawed or improperly manned, making them open to exploitation and therefore undermining your overall protection.

The layout and number of cameras on your property will affect how comprehensive your surveillance coverage is. A staff member who knows the blind spots across your premises can simply commit their crimes without risking being caught, whereas an intruder can avoid being picked up on camera – either by chance or by scoping out your site beforehand. Assessing your camera placement and coverage can help identify any weak spots, and ensure no inch of your property is left vulnerable.

While CCTV cameras are an excellent visual deterrent, they are only as effective as how effectively they are manned. Many businesses choose to keep cameras as a backup, only bothering to check if an incident occurs, but the problem this creates is that some incidents will be missed until it’s too late and the consequences are already being felt. On the other hand, employing someone to permanently monitor your cameras is usually a complete waste of resources.

Churchill Support Services provide cameras equipped with advanced technology to ensure complete coverage of your site. Not only do they come equipped with pan, tilt, and zoom capabilities to eliminate blind spots, but our cameras utilize AI-assisted detection technology to provide 24/7 vigilance. Potential intruders are automatically flagged and reported to our communications centre, who can then organise a response to swiftly protect your property.


2. Improve Access Controls

PACS, or Physical Access Control Systems, provide a physical barrier to anyone trying to gain entry, which are only opened by presenting the right identification. Acting not only as a deterrent, but also as an early warning sign of intrusion, PACS are simple but effective measures to secure your premises.

Ranging from keycards and fobs to more sophisticated solutions such as biometric scanning, fingerprints, and facial recognition, PACS allow businesses to regulate access to specific areas for employees and customers. This prevents members of the public taking a wrong turn and ending up somewhere they shouldn’t, and prevents staff causing trouble in vulnerable areas, such as those that house sensitive information or contain valuable assets.

Access control systems are perfect for larger and more intricate sites such as industrial compounds and corporate offices. These locations see various groups of people pass through, who may or may not be allowed access to certain zones. PACS provide multiple layers of security, making staff and visitor management far easier by dictating where each individual department and individual can access.

With 43% of surveyed businesses reporting that PACS administration is too difficult, Churchill Support Services pride ourselves on making the transition as smooth as possible. Our professional engineers will assess your property in detail before conducting their tailored installation, and will take care of all maintenance and upgrades to provide a long-lasting security solution for your site.


3. Invest In Security Guarding

If your business is suffering from a prolonged spate of crime, investing in professional security guarding may be the solution. An SIA-licensed security officer will watch over your property, presenting a strong visual presence and deterring potential lawbreakers. Particularly useful when dealing with trespassing, vandalism, or arson, a vigilant guard will spot and see off intruders before any significant harm can be done.

According to IFSEC, the UK security industry has employed 65,000 new security officers over a recent six-month period, which corresponds to a workforce increase of 16%.  This soaring demand is in response to soaring crime rates, with businesses stepping up their security measures in the face of a cost-of-living crisis and economic recession. Such figures demonstrate that businesses are turning to physical means to tackle increasing levels of crime, which is a testament to the effectiveness and results of security guarding.

Churchill’s highly trained and professional security officers are fully licensed by the SIA (Security Industry Authority) and are vetted for a minimum of five years, ensuring the dedication and integrity of their character. Our officers can perform various duties on-site, such as controlling entry points, managing access, conducting patrols, responding to alarms, taking in deliveries, and keeping records of visitors and staff.


4. Invest In Keyholding & Alarm Response

Professional keyholding adds an extra layer of protection to your business. The service involves a copy of your keys being stored in a secure off-site location. Should you require immediate access to your premises, whether that be from a security threat, maintenance issue, or natural emergency, your security provider can retrieve your keys and unlock the required areas. This relieves you and your staff from the responsibility of responding to dangerous situations, and instead dispatches a trained professional to your site to resolve any issues.

As for alarm response, studies have shown that 83% of burglars check for an alarm before attempting to break in to a property, and 60% will be turned away by such a strong visual deterrent. Despite this, it’s estimated only 2/3 of businesses have intruder alarms installed, which comes at a time when burglaries are on the rise in the UK, with year-on-year records being broken (407,189 cases in 2022). This outlines just how effective alarms can be in safeguarding your property, and the importance for businesses to invest in alarm systems.

Churchill’s keyholding and alarm response is industry leading, with an average response time of just 30 minutes across the UK. This means you can rest assured that our professional officers will attend your premises far quicker than the emergency services can, resolving any ongoing security threats.


How Churchill Can Spring Clean Your Business Security

As crime and policing evolves, so too does the security industry and security best practice. More advanced and stronger measures are required to combat historic highs in crime, leading to more investment and innovation across the sector, with many businesses ramping up their systems and procedures. However, upgrading your security measures to stay in line with the latest standards can be a challenging task. That’s where Churchill Support Services come in.

As the UK’s #1 rated ACS-Approved Contractor, we are the industry leader in security solutions, surpassing a pool of hundreds of competitors to come out on top. Under an extensive audit by the SIA, designed to assess the robustness and attentiveness of our operations, we scored 144 out of a possible 145 points, making us the ideal choice to spring clean your business security. Whether you need upgraded systems, more comprehensive cover, or seeking to invest in greater security – we have the perfect security solution for you.

While we’re on the topic of spring cleaning, many businesses will also look to improve the cleanliness of their premises during this time, whether it be a restaurant preparing for a busy season or a hotel resort opening back up. Fear not – Churchill Support Services’ sister company Vanguard Cleaning can provide regular and deep cleaning to enhance the presentation and hygiene of your site. For all your commercial cleaning needs, be sure to contact Vanguard on their website here.

For more information about Churchill, or to receive an entirely free, no obligation quote for security solutions, please contact our exceptional team at head office.

John Melling

Group Chief Executive Officer

John has a proven track record for motivating and leading high performance teams and has helped mentor and develop many people at Churchill who now hold key or senior positions within the business. John is committed to delivering only the finest services, exercising compelling leadership, maintaining good internal morale and striving to resolve any challenges efficiently and effectively.