Workplace violence has proven to be a growing concern that crosses continents and industries alike. Many employers struggle with this issue as workplace violence incidents continue to climb. In the US alone, nearly 2 million non-fatal workplace violence incidents are reported, and it is estimated that an additional 25 percent go unreported. Incidents of violence can prove quite costly to businesses, resulting in a loss of work time and productivity as well as medical expenses and claims. It’s not surprising that our experts in security are increasingly fielding inquiries looking for best-in-class workplace violence consultants and experts. After all, corporate security is a 360 degree thing; auditing your risk for workplace violence is one of the things our workplace violence consultants do in an audit. (They can also audit all other aspects of your business risk).
Proactive vs. Responsive Measures Against Workplace Violence
Businesses often resort to responsive security measures to address their workplace violence concerns. A number of businesses, when asked what they are doing to prevent workplace violence, cite the implementation of active shooter training. Others cite some combination of access controls, security guards, video surveillance and panic alarms when asked what they do to prevent violence. Incidents of workplace violence continue to occur in spite of the measures employers are implementing. What many companies are starting to realize is that true prevention requires strategy.
Working with a Workplace Violence Expert on a Consulting Basis
A strategically designed workplace violence prevention program will take into account a number of factors. It will consider a company’s physical security measures in the context of the people who use them. To achieve prevention, a program must incorporate policy and behavior to accompany physical security measures. Businesses concerned about the risk of workplace violence should evaluate the efficacy of their security programs by looking beyond their door locks and camera systems. Physical security measures are, after all, only as good as the people who are tasked with using them. The people who are using them are only as good as the policy (and enforcement) in place to ensure they are being used as intended. In short, the best way for employers to prevent workplace violence is by evaluating the totality of their security program. Where employees are not engaged and invested in ensuring the security of the workplace, employers can find opportunities to help improve the way they interface with physical security measures.