In an ideal world, no one would ever have to worry about anything. People would be kind to one another all the time. There would be no crime. No poverty. No misfortune. Sadly we do not live in an ideal world. In fact, you could say we live in an often less than ideal world. Once sadly riddled with crime. And as a business owner, you are more susceptible to crime than most others.
And it isn’t just criminals that will be gunning to get a slice of your business. Competitors as well will constantly try to undercut you or steal clients away from you. Disgruntled former customers or employees can make your life hell as well. But there is a lot that can be done to mitigate all of these risks. So we are going to take a look at the various protective measures you should be thinking about as a business owner.
Physical Security Measures
If you are running a traditional business with a publicly open storefront then you will firstly need to invest in some serious physical security measures. Australia might have lower crime rates than some other countries, but it still has a lot of crime. So it is prudent to invest in security as much as possible.
A top-notch alarm system is a must-have. You will want to find a security firm that offers 24/7 security monitoring. If someone breaks in you want the police notified asap and someone monitoring the system from afar. You’ll also want to invest in some heavy-duty roller shutters. These will make it far more difficult for someone to break into your property from the front. We cannot stress enough how important it is to not skimp on these two security measures.
You will also want to invest in a sturdy, secure safe. Even if you keep no money on the premises overnight, you will want a safe on-site to store extra cash and important documents during the working day. It isn’t just at night that criminals operate. Some are bold and rash enough to strike during the day. So you will want to have that extra layer of security on site.
Thirty years ago most businesses wouldn’t even need to consider any sort of digital security. Technology wasn’t as advanced and the internet wasn’t around. Companies were blissfully unaware of how complicated things would become. Nowadays, cyber threats are sometimes more serious than a thief robbing your store at night.
Hackers. Identity thieves. Scammers. All of them have made the internet their battleground. And if your business doesn’t have ample security, chances are it will be attacked and you could lose everything. So you need to invest in good cyber-security.
We recommend hiring a cyber-security company to fit all your networks and systems with advanced firewalls. These companies usually offer 24/7 security, meaning someone will be ready to handle any threats that might pop up. You would also do well to make use of a VPN. A virtual private network is a great security tool that adds an extra layer of security between you and potential hackers. And it can keep your business location safe. Especially useful if you are operating out of your home.
For an online business, you will need more advanced cybersecurity. If a hacker gets into your website they could take everything. So you will want layers upon layers of protection around your website and servers.
Not every threat to your business is in the form of criminal activity. Sometimes it is just old-fashioned business competition that can ruin you. And any business is only as strong as its weakest link. Many businesses have been toppled by careless employees saying something they weren’t meant to or selling off information to a rival.
This is why you need a proper employee contract with many security clauses in it. You should ensure that all your staff knows that they cannot breach confidentiality without serious repercussions. This includes selling off client tips to your opposition. You should thoroughly vet all your employees before hiring them to ensure you aren’t hiring someone with a history of this behavior.
Speaking of non-criminal threats to your business, we need to talk about insurance. Unexpected financial costs can devastate a company. And more often than not it is impossible to prepare for the situation that leads to the hefty fees. This is why you need to invest in top-tier business insurance.
Business insurance is designed to protect you against claims from disgruntled customers. Everyone makes mistakes. But some customers aren’t content with letting bygones be bygones and will try to get some money out of you. Without proper insurance, you could end up losing a lot of your money.
Employee insurance is also a necessary addition to your business. If a member of staff hurts themself while on shift, you are liable if they decide to sue. Especially if the accident was due to negligence of another member of staff or due to a safety issue on site. Employee insurance, again, protects you against having to pay out of pocket for a settlement if they decide to take legal action against the company.