When it comes to security, many companies may add the security management role for their business to the job description of one of their employees. The alternative in larger companies or in corporate organisations will be a dedicated security manager or team with security experience to lead these initiatives. Both options have worked successfully for years, but the weak point is when there is a requirement for specific specialised expertise, an in-house resource for a limited time period/project or typically a requirement for both. At this point, serious consideration should be given to the benefits of hiring an independent security consultant. While it may appear to come at an additional cost, the benefits often outweigh any expenditure in several ways:
- Peace of mind that you’re bringing in a subject matter expert.
- You can often realise both short term and long-term savings due to the specific knowledge of the security consultant.
- Efficiency, as you can keep your company’s workforce in their day to day roles while appointing an expert to specifically handle everything from risk assessments to security system design and project management.
In this post, we will take a closer look at the true value of an independent security consultant and how they can serve as a true asset to your organisation.
What is a Security Consultant?
As the name implies, a security consultant is an expert who can assess your current security measures, strategies and risks. Their advice should be proportionate to the risk and be based on an operational brief or requirement. Such a professional will do this by assessing risk, identifying weaknesses, discussing the operational requirement with the company and proposing how to turn security flaws into strengths. We’ll get into more about the true value of working with a security consultant, but know that the ideal consultant works as an extension of any company, helping to both prevent security issues from occurring in the future and reacting to current security initiatives to see where improvements can be made.
Benefits of Working with Security Consultants
The ideal security consultant should act as an extension of any company and understand the operation of that company. Here’s a closer look at how many consultants act to accomplish this and how the businesses that hire them can leverage this expertise:
Expertise Often Not Found In-House
Security consultants are credible, qualified experts that are often difficult to find among the workforce of an existing company. They will work with the business management and executive leadership teams, within their own companies or industries as an expert in security to implement the solutions to keep the company’s people, products, assets and properties safe. Security experts work in a confidential role with their clients, identifying risks that are both obvious and more difficult to detect. Security consultants are subject matter experts. They are not professionals transitioning into a security role from something unrelated to the field or someone training to learn about security. They are experts that can make an immediate difference with the organisations that they work with and can also help companies meet regulatory compliance.
Subject Matter Experts
Although many security consultants have a broad knowledge of the general subject most specialise in particular areas (e.g. electronic security systems, physical security, cybersecurity, etc.).
The route to becoming a security consultant takes years of both academic, on-the-job training and experience, the latter being something that isn’t easily gained or replicated.
New Construction Advisors
A new construction project or new office fitout?
Engaging a security consultant can provide essential information and detail to your project team to ensure that the security requirements are an integral part of the design and build.
Security consultants can provide design information to meet all Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) design stages ensure a coordinated approach for the project development and can issue performance specifications that deliver cost-effective security solutions to ensure the recommendations meet the operational requirements.
Security consultants are typically external professionals and work independently of their clients.
They should also be commercially independent of any manufacturer or security service provider to ensure that the advice given is in the client’s best interest.
It is important to note that security consultants should examine a client’s current policies from an outsider’s perspective, which may require the review and challenges of the current security practices.
“If it’s not broke don’t fix it.” Unfortunately, many organisations do not know that their current security practices may be broken, are outdated or have been superseded. A security consultant should be able to carry out a risk assessment for a client and provide suitable recommendations to ensure compliance with the operational requirements.
Existing externally from a company, they can truly identify risks and provide recommendations from an unbiased perspective, giving clients the information that they need to hear to protect all of their assets.