Today’s workforce includes a growing number of temporary and part-time employees, along with paid and unpaid interns. While these alternatives to full-time workers offer many benefits to businesses, such as flexibility for seasonal work increases or specific project-based work, there are also some drawbacks, particularly where security is concerned. Addressing these security considerations is a vital step in protecting your employees and your business from a variety of potential risks.
These risks can come in the form of theft, fraud, cyber crime, or even workplace violence. Guarding against each of these threats is important in providing a safe environment for your employees and secure conditions for your business. Consider implementing some or all of these suggestions to safeguard your business property and the people you employ.
HR Screening Process: Start at the beginning with your hiring process.
- Many businesses skip over the normal HR procedures when hiring interns or temporary and part-time workers – and this can put your business and your employees at risk. Even if you are only hiring for a short-term seasonal increase or on a single-project basis, ensuring that the person you bring into your office is legitimate and doesn’t have a criminal background is still very important.
- Having a system in place and going to the added effort to require a full HR screening of ALL applicants adds a layer of protection to your business.
- Appropriate screening processes can help to prevent fraud, an illegal gain of insider access, and introducing a known criminal or violent offender to your work environment.
Access Control System: A second point to consider is how to secure physical access to your facility.
- Traditional hard keys should be numbered and assigned to necessary personnel only. Unless an intern, temp, or part-time employee will be entering before or leaving after all other full-time employees, they most likely do not need keys to the building or other secure areas of your business. Keys should only be given on an as-needed basis and collected immediately upon termination. If your company issues keys to temporary employees during your busy season, it is advisable to change the locks and replace keys held by your full-time employees when that season ends and those workers leave the business.
- If possible, it might be better to go with an access control system which utilizes key card entry instead of hard keys. Key cards offer the benefits of complete control over who has access to which parts of your business. Also, you can immediately change or revoke access as needed.
General Office Procedures: Next, it is a good idea to have some office practices in place that offer ways to identify and eliminate general threats.
- ID badges are an easy way to quickly ascertain who belongs and who doesn’t. Also, this can be part of the key card access control system to maximize efficiency.
- Sign in / sign out sheets are another way to verify who is in the building at any given time. This can be helpful if some property, such as laptops, phones, or files go missing – you will know who had access during that time frame.
- Offering lockers or other places for employees to secure personal items can keep desks and work areas clear of easily stolen property and give an added measure of protection from theft.
Internet and Password Security: Finishing out the list is password and malware protection.
- When a worker is only with you for a short time, there is the temptation to just “share” a username and password with them. But that is not wise. Use caution when granting anyone access to your computer and online systems. Some cyber crime is committed as a crime of opportunity to steal information while performing legitimate work for your company. But serious hackers sometimes pose as temporary workers, specifically to gain access to sensitive data and passwords. Assigning a unique username and password to anyone other than a full-time or long-term part-time employee, in addition to restricting their access to your systems, can help to prevent this type of threat.
- Regardless of how your company grants access during a temporary employees stint, this access should always be immediately revoked when that person leaves.
- Changing passwords with adequate frequency is a best practice as well.
- And installing anti-viral and malware protection is a must for every business internet service, especially if visitors or temporary employees will have access to your system.
Being aware of the risks and being proactive in taking steps to limit or eliminate the risks are great ways to show your employees how much you value their safety and want to provide a secure and productive work environment. Want to learn more about how our HR system can help mitigate risk? Click here and we’ll be happy to help.