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What’s the best thing about owning a small business? There’s hardly any overhead and unlimited potential for growth. Plus, if you’re the owner, you get to be your own boss.

However, the downsides of small business ownership are plentiful. For one, the owners are usually workaholics. But also, small companies are a favorite target of burglars, thieves and employees with sticky fingers.

Let’s examine why small businesses are more vulnerable to crime, and how to choose a scalable, small office solution to prevent these crimes from happening. 

Why are small businesses more vulnerable to crime?

The fact is, burglaries and theft are a part of doing business. Sixty-four percent of small businesses reported experiencing employee theft according to a University of Cincinnati study. The same study revealed that many of these thefts related to long-term schemes that lasted from two weeks to 20 years.

According to the California Restaurant Association, employees steal because:

  • They feel they don’t receive enough pay.
  • They feel the employer wronged them.
  • They don’t think the theft hurts the employer.
  • They think insurance covers the employer against theft.
  • They don’t consider the consequences of the theft to be significant.
  • They don’t think the employer will enforce any consequences if the employee is found out.

The solution? Small business owners should strongly consider implementing modern access control systems. Access control isn’t just for large enterprises; solutions do exist for small offices that take into consideration their specific needs and requirements.

Small business access control considerations

Every small business has different kinds of assets to protect from burglars and sticky-handed employees. Therefore, each business will have different access control methods and security needs. For example, which assets does your business need to protect?

  • Cash
  • Electronics
  • Tools
  • Supplies
  • Machinery
  • Intellectual property
  • Trade secrets
  • Client lists
  • Client information
  • Other company assets

According to the University of Cincinnati study, cash is the most common thing for small business employees to steal, with $20,000 being the average amount stolen.

In addition to exploring the kinds of assets that you need to protect, you’ll also want to ask yourself some important questions to build the best small office security system for your budget:

1) Do you need a scalable, expandable solution?

Scalability is a key feature that comes standard with all Avigilon access control systems. It’s easy to expand Avigilon’s access control solutions to include new offices, new doors, new elevators, new buildings, new employees and more — no matter where in the world you need to expand.

With our cloud-based access control systems, you don’t have to install a local server at each facility. Just install our patented readers and Smart Hubs using industry-standard wiring, and you’re all set. The cloud-based administrative software makes expansions (and downsizing) a snap.

2) Who needs access?

Maybe you have just one or two employees. Maybe you have 10 or 50. Do you also have customers, cleaners, maintenance people, vendors, landscapers or delivery people who need to access your facility?

A lot of businesses try to save money on access control with keypad locks, but keycode-sharing is inevitable, and this sets you up for the wrong people gaining access. A safer solution is smartphone-based access control from Avigilon Alta, which ties access permissions to each individual’s mobile device. You can even share temporary guest access links that grant visitors access without needing to install the mobile app.

3) What kinds of locks and hardware will you use?

You’ll have several options when it comes to locking mechanisms and hardware for small business security system. For example, do you want a push-button exit? Would your facility benefit from more affordable, electric deadbolt locking systems, or would you prefer more expensive electromagnetic locking mechanisms? 

Keep in mind that, in addition to your exterior doors, adding access control to interior offices provides greater security against theft. You may also want to secure cabinets that contain sensitive assets and information.

4) Who will monitor and audit the access control and security system?

A cutting-edge access control and security solution isn’t any good unless someone is monitoring and maintaining it.

You’ll need to audit the system regularly to review who is coming and going. You’ll need to test it to ensure it’s working properly. And, you’ll need someone to add and delete access profiles as employees and visitors come and go.

Will it be you or another trusted employee who devotes time and resources to the task?

Have questions? We can help

Our video security experts can help you implement the right security system for your business.