Future-proofing workplace security: Expert advice for an unknown future

Jan 29, 2024
In this blog post, security experts answer some of the most pressing questions from workplace and facility leaders.
Giulianno LopezEnvoy Logo
Content Marketing Manager
Marketing Specialist

Workplace security has changed a lot over the past few years. It's no longer just about physical safety. As technology progresses and security risks evolve, companies are adapting their strategies. Now, more than ever, there's a growing emphasis on consolidating solutions without compromising security. The boundaries between physical and digital security are now increasingly intertwined.

In our webinar, "How to safeguard your workplace for the long term," we hosted a panel discussion on this very topic with security experts:

  • Lee Odess, Global access control leader
  • Julius Jayasekaran, Datadog's Global Head of Physical Security
  • Nicole Persaud, Samsara's Head of Global Safety and Security

Let's explore the questions posed and the insightful answers provided by our panelists.

How do you see and manage the intersection between physical security and information security where there is a possible crossover?

Managing the intersection between physical and IT security requires a dual approach. It's an absolute must to have both these functions working together. One way to make it happen is by establishing a tiger team to develop an integrated security strategy. This collaboration ensures that physical and digital security concerns are considered in tandem.

Additionally, prioritize adaptable and integrated technology, especially in a hybrid work environment. Cloud-based systems can maximize flexibility and provide scalability as your organization's needs evolve. It's best to opt for open platforms. These platforms pull data from your workplace tools and tie them into a unified dashboard. This centralized view gives real-time insights into the effectiveness of your security measures. These solutions help you make informed, data-driven decisions.

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With all the consolidation happening in the access control industry, are there specific areas where we think companies will drive innovation?

"Innovation isn't just about technology," emphasizes Lee Odess. It can also "extend to new business practices." For example, the industry has begun to shift from traditional hardware sales to more recurring revenue models. As Lee noted, "Whether it's pricing or packaging, there's innovation happening. Software as a service (SaaS) is now being introduced in many areas. Historically, most of our industry was based on hardware sales. So now there's also software sales."

He also highlighted the evolving roles of security and system integrators. They're now integrating operational tools with security applications, offering more software-centric solutions.

"The definition of what it means to be a security integrator is changing. Many integrate operational systems—like ServiceNow and Salesforce—into their security tools. Where before, when we talked about integration, it was a video system into access control. That was it. But new entities are coming in that are creating new use cases," said Lee.

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As a U.K. company, we have to consider GDPR. How do you best balance data and privacy?

Julius Jayasekaran recommends taking a cautious approach when balancing data and privacy priorities. He highlighted the importance of "anonymizing data with analytics tools" to meet privacy requirements.

Julius also stressed the need for strong partnerships with legal and privacy teams. This helps security teams navigate the evolving landscape of privacy laws in Europe and globally. It also ensures compliance and balances data utility with privacy and legal obligations.

"My advice? First and foremost, create that partnership with your legal teams. Do your due diligence before launching something. For example, consider the data mapping process in the U.K. Can you use data from France for initiatives in England? Can you do this and that? And so on," said Julius.

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Any recommendations for handling increasing privacy concerns, especially in California?

The first thing is to understand which compliance standards you must adhere to. For example, companies with locations in California must comply with the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). But, as many of you know, implementing compliance is one thing. Staying compliant with evolving laws and regulations is a different beast. A visitor management system (VMS) can help.

These systems automate tasks like getting consent electronically, showing privacy policies when visitors sign in, and automatically deleting their data. This automation helps keep track of visitor information digitally, upholding privacy and meeting compliance requirements. It's particularly useful for following California's "right to be forgotten" laws under the CCPA.

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If you were moving into a new building, what would be your 3 top tips?

Nicole Persaud shared some of her top tips during the discussion. She recommends:

  1. Designing as much security as you can without technology. Focus on integrating security features naturally into the building's design. For example, when designing elevator vestibules, integrating the emergency exit within the vestibule itself, rather than having it separate, can significantly enhance safety. This ensures compliance with legal requirements (e.g., push-to-exit buttons) and reduces the need for additional hardware and systems. It's an example of how thoughtful design can address security concerns directly.
  2. Defining security standards. Clearly outline your security standards, especially if you're in a leased space. Determine what's mandatory and what's optional for your building's security. As Nicole noted, "Build out and define. What are your standards? What's optional, and what's not?"
  3. Layering solutions based on risk. Assess the risks of your building, plan the usage of spaces, and allocate your budget accordingly to layer security solutions. The right VMS solutions can help you with all of this.

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Last word: Leverage the right tools to secure your workplace

Navigating the evolving landscape of workplace security requires adapting to a "new normal." Whether it's safeguarding against unauthorized access or protecting visitor data, businesses must make necessary adjustments. By using modern and advanced workplace systems, companies can effectively get ahead of their security measures, ensuring the safety of people, places, and data.


Download our eBook, "The buyer’s guide to visitor management software," where you'll learn what you need to look for when evaluating possible solutions.

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AUTHOR BIO
Content Marketing Manager

Giulianno Lopez is a Content Marketing Manager here at Envoy, where he specializes in crafting content centered around workplace security and compliance. When he's not working, you can find him at Golden Gate Park training for his next race.

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