Advance Security’s commitment to industry certification has been further cemented by being the first security company to receive the BS 25999 British Standard for Business Continuity Management (BCM). Having already achieved ISO 14001 Environmental Management and OHSAS 18001 Occupational Health and Safety accreditation, Advance is currently the only professional security organisation to have secured all three standards. The manned guarding, key holding and technologies service provider was independently recommended by the NSI to receive BS 25999 following a rigorous, two-part auditing process.
“The security industry has been pontificating on the importance of business continuity management for some months now. But we’ve shown we’re prepared to pay more than just lip service to the issue by proactively investing the time and resource to make sure we’re fully prepared for every eventuality,” said Advance Security’s Managing Director, Richard Bailey.
While the certification is testament to the importance Advance has long placed on establishing solid business continuity plans, the team had already drawn-up comprehensive procedures for coping with a potential crisis – even before the high profile threat of a flu pandemic. Now Advance has further strengthened its position by putting the additional knowledge it’s acquired through the accreditation process into practice. Working with its clients to fine-tune existing business management systems, Advance is absolutely confident in its ability to supply customers with complete cover should an incident occur.
“Due to the nature of our business we simply can’t underestimate any potential disruption to the service we supply our clients – especially during a crisis,” said Bailey. “Watertight security is a ‘must’ when organisations are at their most vulnerable, whatever may be the cause.” High profile threats such as terrorism, flu pandemics and data loss tend to be front of mind with most, but BS 25999 adopts a more pragmatic approach towards business continuity management. Rather than focusing on disaster management, the accreditation encourages continuity managers to alter their mindset and instead look to identify all processes which, if interrupted, would impact on a business’ day-to-day activities. As part of the BS 25999 assessment process, the team – led by Advance Security’s Group Health & Safety and Compliance Manager, John Berry – had to demonstrate an awareness of all business critical activities as well its level of dependency on critical suppliers and all suppliers’ critical dependencies too.
“Out of all the accreditation applications I have been involved with, BS 25999 has been by far the most challenging,” said John Berry. “The stringent criteria certainly ensures you’re 100% committed to BCM as a business and the last 18 months have required a great deal of teamwork to get where we are today. To be the first security company to be nominated for the standard is especially gratifying.
“We place a lot of emphasis on obtaining the relevant third party accreditations because beyond being a solid testimony to our professionalism, our clients value our concerted focus on continually improving our operations because, ultimately, we pass on the benefits in the service we provide.”
Advance has achieved all three accreditations (IS 14001, OHSAS 18001 and BS 25999) in the last two years alone, alongside implementing a raft of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and diversity policies across the company.