Every business must confront the three major workplace security issues – staff safety, asset security, and the protection of data and other valuable information.

These security issues require a robust workplace security system to avoid any risk to a business, which may be physical damage, robbery, theft, or system hacking. Physical security is arguably the most critical aspect of workplace safety.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the importance of physical security in the workplace and expand upon some of the more important elements.

Access Control

Physical access control could be described as the determining and enforcing who has access to grounds, buildings, equipment, and sensitive areas.

At workplaces around the globe, this is one of the most important aspects of preventative security measures. It’s important to know who’s on your property and who’s inside your buildings for both crime prevention and also as a safeguard in emergencies – emergency response personnel should know exactly how many people to account for and evacuate.

Workplace security must be rigidly controlled via ID-based physical constraints for unauthorized access to both the workplace and the company’s assets.

If a company is dealing with sensitive data, equipment, or chemicals, no employee without proper clearance should be able to access restricted areas. Not only could they damage equipment or harm themselves, but they could also end up sharing information they shouldn’t have access to.

Several physical security access controls can provide strong security in the workplace, like computer-based automatic controls and manual controls.


It’s the duty of any business to provide their employees with a secure working environment, keeping close track of what’s incoming and outgoing using appropriate security systems like CCTV.

Physical surveillance in the workplace is a powerful tool for maintaining a high level of security. Not only can it be used for incident tracking mechanisms, but it’s also the perfect preventative security measure.

A strong, reliable video surveillance system in real-time environments strengthens workplace safety and security. Exit and entrance points, and other critical areas like the critical data center, IT rooms, and others should be fully monitored using an up-to-date CCTV surveillance system.

Alarm System and Security Lighting

A well thought-out physical security plan is vital to any business’s success because it reduces insurance claims and liabilities, closures, and other expenses that affect your bottom line.

Your security policy should outline identity authentication, employee access, alarm systems, facility requirements, and other important details relevant to your business. 

An alarm system is critically important so that malicious activity or security breaches can be pre-empted. Also important for workplace safety and security is top-quality security lighting.

If exterior lighting is poor or non-existent, these are both dangerous night-time situations. Spaces that are poorly lit increase the likelihood of accidents and invite crime. 

Badges and Tokens

The only way proper surveillance and monitoring can be effectively employed is to be able to differentiate between internal and external people. This is where badges and tokens come in. They’re especially useful in larger workplace security areas.

Most of today’s larger workplaces require that employees carry some form of identification card, which will typically carry their name, title, photo, and perhaps your company’s logo.

The purpose of these ID cards is to verify the identity of the wearer. Everyone is protected when you use an access control badge system for your employees, and of course, it makes it easier for a company to safeguard restricted areas. An example of this would be Openpath’s access control capabilities.

Why Are These Physical Aspects of Security so Important?

It’s the responsibility of a business to protect and safeguard not only its employees, but also its assets and valuable information from any kind of theft, damage, or loss.

Small Biz Trends conducted a recent survey and discovered that a 5% retention of customers could increase a company’s profit margins from between 25% and 95%.

These are important figures because it shows that a strong and secure workplace environment improves both the productivity and the efficiency of a company, directly impacting customer satisfaction, leading to customer retention.

Effective and reliable workplace security is very important to any business because it reduces insurance, compensation, liabilities, and other expenses that the company must pay to its stakeholders, ultimately leading to increased business revenue and a reduction in operational charges incurred. 

How to Implement a Strong Physical Workplace Security System

OSHA, PCI, ISO, and others are all regulatory organizations that require workplace security systems to be put in place. The steps listed below will help create a reliable and safe working environment for everyone in your organization.

  • Start by assessing and evaluating the security requirements of your workplace.
  • Next, formulate a comprehensive policy that will cover each of the above safety aspects.
  • Consult with contractors or regulatory consultants requesting recommendations from the regulatory organizations.
  • Use third-party contractors to have your new physical security system installed, determined by the agreed scope of work.
  • Ensure that your security system is tested and verified as per regulatory requirements.
  • Your system should be commissioned for real-world operations.
  • Maintain your security system as per your workplace security policy.

Is Security Just A Fast Growing Industry?

In this modern and fast paced world, security is more important than ever. It is one of the fastest growing industries in the world today.

Almost everyday one hears about damage or loss occurring due to security lapses or a lack of security on the news.

Even the term security is not just limited to physical security nowadays. It includes things that are unseen but extremely valuable things such as electronic data or e-data for example credit card details or government documents.

An important aspect of security whether guarding physical assets or electronic assets are security guards. Their main goal is to monitor and protect assets and act as a deterrent to violence.

Security companies in New Jersey and NYC are valuable because they possess multifaceted skills that can function in various settings. Their training is not limited to a specific area and can serve other roles such as hospitality.

Security guards form the backbone of security in any setting because of the flexibility of a security guard. They can be trained in multiple techniques to protect one’s assets.

Some examples of various types of security guards are airport security, warehouse security, event specific security, mall, hotel or bank security and cyber security etc.

Each of them has their own unique and specific responsibilities but the goal remains the same i.e. to protect valuables.

What this means is that a security guard could use his skills and experience that he or she gained working at a warehouse and use it at another setting such as a mall or bank.

This type of flexibility is not available in a majority of occupations and also serves as a way for security personnel to build on their experiences and skills.

In addition, in each setting mentioned above, a security guard can provide more than just security. Say for example hotel security personnel are able to be hospitable to hotel guests by pointing them in the right direction within buildings.

Another example of security guards being able to provide more than just security is when guards working at an office building are able to walk an employee to their car after a late night of work.

Similarly, guards at an apartment complex can help residents who are locked out get into the building if they forget their keys or escort them safely to their vehicle.

Guards can also be important first responders in emergency situations. Say there needs to be an emergency evacuation that needs to take place at a busy concert venue.

Security personnel, who are already present in the arena, using their training will be able to direct crowds in the correct direction out of the building before any formal emergency services arrive.

This action could potentially save numerous lives and prevent chaos. It is important to recognize that to provide 100% security is impossible no matter method of security is implemented.

However, security guards are able to use their professional skills to significantly prevent and reduce theft, deter violence and in addition provide support to customers.

All of this together makes them a valuable inclusion to any setting.

Joseph Ferdinando is the visionary founder of Building Security Services, a leading security company renowned for its comprehensive security services. With an illustrious career spanning over 40 years in the security industry, Joseph has been instrumental in elevating the standards of security guard services for a broad spectrum of businesses and organizations. As an influential member of the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) in both New York and New Jersey chapters, Joseph has played a pivotal role in shaping industry standards and practices.