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A Business Owner's Guide for Enhanced Security in Open-Plan Offices

Lance Guillory
March 15, 2024

Transitioning your team into an open-plan office is an exciting adventure. The spacious layout boosts team camaraderie and the welcoming environment gives you the perfect space to collaborate. Unfortunately, every pro has its con when it comes to keeping these areas secure, as an open-plan setup brings unique security challenges to your table. Extending beyond privacy worries and ranging up to unauthorized breaches, learn how to protect your business and maintain a securely open environment for you and your team.

Why Open-Plan Offices Need Security

In 2023, small businesses were averagely staffed at 11.7 employees. Whether your organization employs more or less these days, we know that you want to keep each person safe. An open-plan office layout, while good for conversation, reduces the amount of physical barriers between you, your team, and visitors. As a result, you deal with increased risk like unauthorized access, theft, and adversary attack. 

Some of the most prevalent security hurdles encountered by small businesses in these open-plan offices include:

  • Balancing an open-feel with access control.
  • Safeguarding sensitive information during brainstorming sessions.
  • Deploying discreet yet efficient surveillance.
  • Protecting critical areas without creating barriers.

Keeping Your Open Office Safe

Fortunately, there are several steps you can take to safeguard your open-plan office and minimize the risks associated with this setup. These include:

Implementing Access Control Measures: Limiting entry to your open-plan office to authorized personnel only is an effective way to prevent unauthorized visitors from entering and accessing confidential information. This can be done through the use of keycard access systems or biometric scanners, which require a fingerprint or iris scan for entry. 

Installing Security Cameras: Placing security cameras in key areas of your office not only deters potential thieves, but also provides video evidence in case of any security breaches. Inform your employees about the presence of these cameras and their intended purpose.

Creating Designated Quiet Areas: Designating specific areas as quiet zones can help reduce noise distractions and provide employees with a space to focus on important tasks. This can be particularly beneficial for employees who require a quieter environment to work efficiently. 

Maintain an Open-Space with Strategic Security Options

There are four main categories of physical security measures: Deter, Detect, Delay, and Respond. 

  • Deter: Visible security measures, such as ample lighting and the presence of security personnel, can prevent potential security threats.
  • Detect: Surveillance systems, including CCTV and monitoring cameras, will help you identify unauthorized activities and intruders.
  • Delay: Physical barriers, like locks and secure doors, can hinder intruders' progress, buying crucial time.
  • Respond: Alarm systems and comprehensive Emergency Action Plans ensure preparedness for efficiently addressing security incidents.

Building a Culture of Security Awareness

Beyond the implementation of physical and technological security measures, cultivating a culture of security awareness among your team is also necessary. Regular training sessions on security best practices and protocols enhance your team's ability to recognize and react to potential threats, making every employee a proactive participant in the office's security.

Collaboration Meets Security

Our experts at Safe Haven Risk Management adopt a comprehensive approach to security in order to safeguard not only your physical and digital assets, but also the open, innovative culture that defines your workspace. With the right security strategies in place, your open-plan office can be a dynamic, inspiring, and secure environment for your team to thrive.

Contact us for professional security counsel for your open-office space today.

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