Six stages of operational requirements to establish the overall security of a warehousing site

Heras was featured in an article in Warehouse News discussing the increasing demand for additional warehousing space in the UK and how this is fuelling the rise in the number of speculative builds of general warehouse and distribution hubs. 

Our Head of Sales, Daniel Burnstein, spoke about how Heras is seeing growth in providing standard, off-the-shelf perimeter fencing and barrier entrance controls for the developers of these sites. 

This is all great, but what’s really interesting has been the opportunity to then work directly with tenants who take possession of warehouses on a more detailed statement of requirements for the overall security of the site. 

This well-developed framework process draws on the years of experience of the team at Heras not just in the UK but also across Europe, allowing us to develop a statement of requirements for a tenant taking over pre-built warehousing space. 

Our sixpoint plan for assessing and implementing effective protective security is broadly in line with that of the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI), and we have a range of CPNI-accredited products. 

Developing the plan and who should be involved 

The first thing to say is that a statement of requirements doesn’t stand in isolation from other operational aspects of a warehousing function. It should follow on from a risk assessment that uses threat information and an understanding of the operating context and vulnerabilities.  

The CPNI suggests that the following management, key staff, contractors and consultants are involved in the process: Security Manager; Security Team; Head of Guard Force; HR; Counter-Terrorism Security Adviser (if required); Facilities Manager; Operations Manager; Customer Relations Manager; Union Representative; and personnel with responsibilities in health and safety, security, resilience and corporate risk. This could extend to the comms team and external stakeholders such as industry regulators and local council planning or licensing teams. And, of course, the landlord of the site. 

Workshopping this process not only encourages buy-in from those involved operationally on the site but also allows a wider range of ideas to be identified and considered.  







The six stages to site security 

Stage 1 – splitting the site into sections or areas 

Sites as complex as warehousing spaces and distribution hubs should be split into specific areas, as each of the sectors will have specific requirements. Typically, these are classified as: 

  • Beyond the perimeter 
  • The perimeter 
  • Within the site 
  • The building 
  • Assets 

 Whilst these five areas are a good starting point, it’s important to note that site-specific modifications should be made to better fit the site being considered. A good example of this is where there is public access to a building: the perimeter may be the internal boundary between public and staffonly areas. 

Stage 2 – defining the risks  

Once the different areas of a site have been clearly defined, the next step is to identify, review and agree the risks for each of the areas an organisation is going to consider. If the site is brand new, it may only be possible to use the risk assessment for this (but tenants and owners of multiple sites typically have other information and data to draw on). It is important that any risks are defined with enough granularity to be able to identify recommendations. 

 This stage of the process should result in a list of the risks for each of the areas. Some of these will apply to multiple areas and will therefore appear more than once. Where a site has an extensive risk log, it may be more manageable to consider the  highestpriority risks first.  

 Stage 3 – developing a series of protective security recommendations  

Building on stages 1 and 2, the next stage is to establish the recommendations based on the 5Ds of our Heras Security Model. These are demarcate, deter, detect, delay and deny unauthorised access. 

These principles should be used to direct the thinking around the potential security measures that are available. Each of the identified risks should be considered in terms of the security disciplines (physical, personnel, cyber or technical) that can contribute to addressing the risk. This will build up a range of security measures that have been carefully thought through.  

 Stage 4 – assessing protective security measures  

This stage involves prioritising the protective security measures in terms of their likelihood of successful application. A scoring system can be applied to clearly identify priorities, and each of the measures identified should be considered against the following criteria:  

  • The resources required (capital/operational expenditure, staffing and facilities) 
  • The statement of requirements (the ability/willingness to implement) of the organisation to implement the measure 
  • Stakeholder engagement and support in making the measure work 

Stage 5 – mapping back to the requirements 

Mapping the recommendations back to the statement of requirements gives clarity and visibility to the recommended measures – and this allows the organisation to identify which risks are not being mitigated and where there are limited recommendations.  

 Where the recommendations are not deemed sufficient, the organisation has to decide whether to accept and record the risk on the risk register or if further recommendations are required.  

 Stage 6 – implementing security measures  

The final stage of the process will give protective security recommendations mapped out against the key areas (as outlined in stage 1). These measures will have been agreed to be holistic and covering all the necessary criteria. The protective security measures will have been mapped back to the requirements and the organisation will be confident that the risks have been mitigated or recorded on the risk register.  

This article has been produced with thanks to the CPNI. AsEurope’s leading end-to-end supplier of permanent and mobile perimeter protection solutions, Heras is with you every step of the way to guide you through this sixstep process to identify a statement of requirements. This gives tenants the confidence to know that they are specifying the correct levelsof perimeter security, the access control within the warehouse and even the management of functions within the sitesuch as allocating bays for the fleet of vehicles loading and unloading on site. 

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