Building and managing a successful business is hard work at the best of times. Unfortunately, if you fail to protect it from every angle, the journey will become infinitely harder. After all, attacks on the company may come from multiple directions. This includes criminals, competitors, and natural disasters.
While there are many potential threats to consider, the good news is that small preventative steps will help you overcome them. Here are 10 top tips to ensure that your company is protected from all angles.
#1. Ensure that your work premises are protected against the weather
When thinking about the threats to your business, it’s likely that you’ll worry about other people. However, protecting your property from weather damage is equally crucial. Otherwise, adverse weather could cause costly damages to the building and any assets inside. Productivity could also be disrupted.
While roofing and windows are essential features, you must also know how to stop water pooling on your patio or parking lot. If nothing else, pooling water can be off-putting for employees and visitors.
Impressive landscapes can be a nice feature for some business property types, but you must also consider the threat of falling trees. Of course, ensuring that you have the HVAC facilities to cope with summer heat is vital too.
#2. Prevent unauthorized access
Weather damage isn’t the only threat to your work premises. Thieves are also a threat to all workplace settings including offices, stores, warehouses, and factories.
Using keycards and access entry points is a great way to ensure that only the right people can enter restricted areas. Meanwhile, having surveillance cameras and alarms will deter prospective intruders. Hired security personnel offer an additional layer of protection, which also helps keep your mind at ease.
In addition to human intruders, you must consider the risk posed by pests. Checking that all potential access points are covered to stop rodents, birds, and critters is vital. Otherwise, they could cause severe damage to business properties.
#3. Invest in cybersecurity
While real world dangers need attention, the truth is that digital threats are often a far bigger problem. SMEs are often the target for cybercriminals because they assume your defenses will be less robust than a global giant’s.
However, you can regain control of the situation by focusing on cybersecurity expertise in IT recruitment. This will ensure that your in-house IT teams are ready to implement advanced systems to protect the company in a digital landscape. The use of outsourced security teams is another very popular choice, not least when it provides 24/7 coverage.
The harsh reality is that a single cyberattack could cause irreparable damage. Therefore, it is imperative that you focus on prevention rather than responses. Whatever stage of the venture you’re at, now is the time to take control.
#4. Teach employees about the dangers
Putting the right cybersecurity systems in place will significantly reduce the threats. Nevertheless, it should be noted that up to 95% of all breaches can be attributed to human error.
With this in mind, it is essential that you train all employees so that they can use the internet safely. Making them aware of the latest phishing scams and other cyberattacks will enable them to stay on top of the situation. Likewise, they should stay vigilant to the signs of computer viruses or compromised security.
When employees are less vulnerable to attacks, it will protect all forms of sensitive business data. In turn, this prevents financial losses and helps protect your reputation. It also removes the weight of fear from your shoulders.
#5. Protect your ideas
Both physical theft and data breaches are major problems for a business. However, intellectual theft is potentially even more dangerous to your future. If competitors steal your ideas, it can hit your sales hard. Meanwhile, counterfeit goods bring the additional threat of harming your brand reputation.
Therefore, it’s vital that you take out copyright protection. You should also be prepared to take legal action against anyone who infringes your intellectual rights. It’s not just about financial compensation, it’s about protecting the brand.
It should also be noted that internal threats from employees and ex-employees are a major threat to the company. The use of non-disclosure agreements should be viewed as a key step to protecting the firm.
#6. Reduce the threat of downtime
Time is the most valuable resource at any company’s disposal. Sadly, downtime costs businesses greatly. Fortune 500 companies could lose millions in just one hour while even small companies lose hundreds of dollars per minute.
Therefore, it is vital that you take the necessary steps to reduce downtime to a minimum. Backup power generators will mean you are no longer at the mercy of the power grid. Aside from preventing downtime, it saves you from data corruption or damage to equipment.
Unscheduled downtime can also be prevented with scheduled downtime. To do this, you should track the performance levels of your machinery. Once repairs are needed, you can schedule them to take place outside of work hours.
#7. Support employees
A strong workforce is a crucial asset for your business, not least because they provide the driving force for productivity. As well as hiring the right candidates, though, you must ensure that their skills remain relevant and updated. Meanwhile, creating a good working environment and ensuring that they have the tools to thrive will help you retain the top workers. Low staff turnover rates reduce your ongoing expenses while also ensuring consistent operations.
In today’s climate, it’s important to show an understanding of their human needs too. Mental health first aid can be a great addition while the versatility of hybrid working can be useful. Take care of the employees and they’ll take care of your business.
#8. Give customers a reason to stay loyal
Keeping the business safe is one thing. Sadly, it counts for very little if it does not have a stable future. Loyal customers hold the key to future success. So, once you’ve built a following, retaining them will go a long way to protecting your business for the long haul.
Introducing loyalty schemes and using products and marketing efforts that resonate with them is vital. Ultimately, the goal is to ensure that they are made to feel valued while also getting great value from the company.
The best way to keep them coming back is to provide a winning service. When you provide the right products and continue to do things well, consumers will not have any reason to seek alternative options.
#9. Understand your finances
Sales are important because they are the main source of revenue. Whichever way you look at things, your company’s financial status needs to be a priority. Without capital, you soon won’t have a venture to protect.
As well as revenue, you need to understand your tax obligations and find ways to cut costs without compromising your output. Reduced expenses will remove some pressure from your shoulders and allow you to stay competitively priced. This versatility is an extra layer of support.
Whether you hire an accountant or use accounting software is a personal choice. Either way, though, you must ensure that your finances are tracked at all times. Knowing where you stand facilitates calculated decisions.
#10. Be ready for the worst
Finally, you must accept the fact that you can’t prevent all problems. Therefore, putting business insurance in place is essential. Similarly, partnering with a temporary staffing agency to provide cover for absentees can be very useful. By keeping the venture on a smooth path, the company’s future will be more secure.