Warehouse security is a critical component for any modern business dealing with hardware products. All hardware equipment and products are stored in warehouses, typically farther away from where distribution of the equipment takes place. In order to deter theft or vandalism, strong security measures for warehouses should be taken. Many people still neglect the simple steps involved in a security plan and, as a result, their company experiences major losses. According to statistics, businesses lost $114 million in the U.S. in 2016. This figure is about 13.3% higher than theft in 2015, which was about $100 million.
This trend has been rising continuously over the past two years—thieves managed to steal expensive equipment, materials, and other items due to security breaches.
Warehouse theft prevention requires a strategic approach—apply it to increase the security of your warehouse during work hours and when the space is empty. Don’t merely rely on manual data entry operations anymore, because they’re outdated. All risk-related inventory should be protected using the latest technological solutions. Also, remember to design an emergency response plan to educate your employees to react accordingly.
Vulnerable Areas That Need Protection in a Warehouse
Ensuring warehouse security means that you cover all the space’s vulnerable areas. Those include gates as well as warehouse doors. Make sure that your staff is trained to react quickly, in the event of theft, and that they’re able to protect themselves.
Warehouse theft prevention includes more than securing entrances and exits. It also involves protecting your inventory—including moving goods, machinery, and equipment. It’s better to prevent theft than to deal with it; therefore, make sure you provide strong exterior gate management, a robust alarm system, appropriate landscaping, and reliable employee identification.
Warehouse Theft Prevention Measures
To increase warehouse security, you can start by installing keyless access control. Your warehouse doors will have maximum protection, due to state-of-the-art technology, and it can save you time granting and denying access in real-time to different employees or delivery men. You can send keys remotely so that you don’t have to be on-site and you can manage and track which doors are accessed at unattended locations. Access logs will be produced and can be retrieved automatically for each door, and the credentials of every person entering the facility will be recorded. You can also set up alerts to be notified when any of your locations are being unlocked, at what time, and by whom.
It’s important to pick a suitable fire alarm, and most will integrate into your access control solution. It’s recommended to integrate fire protection at the installation stage of your access system.
You should also pay attention to the IoT ecosystem and the technology that strengthens security. Physical access points are sensitive, but with the right systems in place you won’t encounter issues or barriers with them.
It’s highly recommended to use surveillance cameras in your warehouse. You might also want to utilize glass break detection.
Don't forget to utilize employees IDs. Ask your staff members to wear ID badges so that they can quickly identify each other and notice any potential thieves who do not possess a badge. ID badges will also be helpful for exterior gate management. The people without them will simply not be allowed inside, which significantly decreases the probability of a theft.
Highly efficient burglar alarms will help boost your warehouse security. Kisi, for example, has a door reader, which is a visual deterrent for thieves and cloud-based access control systems will notify you about a burglary. If thieves find out that they are detected with an alarm system, they might run away without taking items in your warehouse inventory. An alarm helps the police to respond to the crime quickly, but just having an alarm system without an access control deterrent is a poor strategy. The two should work in tandem for a strong warehouse security policy.
Implement the steps mentioned above and bring your warehouse security to a new level. Don’t underestimate obvious necessities, like well-lit doors, boundary lines and loading areas.
Here is a sample checklist on how to secure your warehouse:
- Always separate spaces with physical partitions for receiving and dispatching goods.
- Entrance and exit doors of the warehouse should be guarded with a physical access control system that updates over the air to ensure the highest protection standard.
- Devise a proper policy for trash and scrap removal from the warehouse.
- Vehicle loading should be done through separate channels for better warehouse security.
- Install a CCTV surveillance system for live monitoring of internal and external activities.
- Integrate your warehouse security system with your inventory management system. Examples are Cin7, QuickBooks Enterprise, or TradeGecko.
- Proper zoning of the warehouse security system should be done for better security management.
- Don’t allow visitors to roam in the warehouse without supervision.
- Establish proper control of the outgoing shipping schedule.
- Properly inspect the vehicles going in and out of the warehouse.
- High quality security lighting systems inside and outside the warehouse should be installed.
- Manned guards should be employed at the entrance and exit checkpoints if you have expensive products.
- Regular review and maintenance of the warehouse security system should be done.
- Fire equipment should be installed at appropriate locations.
- A security assessment of your warehouse location should compared with local crime records.
- Always try to devise customized measures for warehouse security that are fit for that particular area.
- Implement latest high-tech physical access control system and integrate it with surveillance and alarm systems.
- Internal staff should be properly interviewed before being hired.
- The security procedures and policies should be followed strictly.
Are you interested in securing your warehouse? Learn more about cloud-based access control for warehouses and storage facilities.