Can workplace design reduce the risk of robbery?

Can workplace design reduce the risk of robbery?

Are burglaries random? Research that explores how a property is targeted suggests otherwise. Understanding what motivates an attempted robbery can help business owners create an environment that deters crime from taking place. 

With research pointing to the effectiveness of video alarm systems, installing surveillance can not only deter crime but help catch burglars after a robbery.

What makes a burglar target a premises? 

Research from the University of North Carolina's Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology explored the motivations of burglars to choose particular targets. The study showcased the effectiveness of alarm systems as a deterrent for robbery. 

According to the study, Understanding Decisions to Burglarise from the Offender's Perspective, 83 per cent of the respondents said they would firstly determine if there was an active alarm before attempting a robbery.

Furthermore, more than half (60 per cent) said they would seek an alternative target if they noted an alarm or other forms of surveillance. 

The study also looked into other factors that prevent property from becoming a target. Aside from effective alarm systems, the results included:

  • Presence of people
  • Lack of escape routes
  • Dogs and other security measures

Preventing theft through workplace design

Tasmania Police also states the importance of minimising the risk of becoming a target of burglary. This can be done by reducing the likelihood the robber will obtain valuable items, as well as increasing the chance he or she will be caught.

In order to achieve this, Tasmania Police suggests incorporating certain principles into your workplace design. These include the following:

1) Visibility

Create a workplace that is visible from the road. This can be achieved through lighting, ensuring the premises are well lit through the night or by employing sensor lights. Ensure any foliage is well maintained and does not act as cover for would-be thieves. 

2) Surveillance

Tasmania Police also points to the significance of security cameras and alarm systems. It notes that fake cameras are often easily distinguished and suggests using video alarms for maximum protection. 

3) Secure cash

Ensure that cash registers are fixed to the counter and install physical barriers that prevent robbers from accessing them. Additionally, utilising cash-in-transit services for depositing earnings can further foster the safety of your employees.

Facilitating a safe workplace is an employer's responsibility and can be easily achieved through the wide range of security services and products now available. For advice on the best way to secure your business premises, contact the specialists at NSR.

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