With the recent bout of terrorist attacks, there has never been a more important time to raise awareness of being threat aware. Although this is important for the public as a whole, it is absolutely vital that we do this in the workplace too.
The workplace tends to be one of the primary targets of terrorism, much like transport, as it leads to disruption on a bigger scale, which ultimately has a negative impact on the country’s economy infrastructure. Therefore, companies really should consider and check their security and emergency response procedures regularly to ensure that they can handle an attack.
As well as a company’s security, there also needs to be training for the staff. Employees are valuable assets in any form of emergency drill, so it is vital that they are informed and trained, and prepared for terrorism. The workplace is a target due to the perceived lack of employer emphasis on this, so preparedness and awareness has the potential to be an effective prevention technique.
Induction Training in the Modern Workplace
While it is important to refrain from scaremongering, it is crucial for terrorism awareness training to become part of the induction training for all new staff. All new employees go through a typical induction, where they receive information on:
- The Organisation’s Policies & Procedures
- Safety & Emergency Procedures
This together with a guided tour of the workplace and introduction’s to staff ensures that the employee starts off with the right information, ready to work as productively as possible.
In today’s society, employees also need to be prepared for ALL possible emergencies, including terrorism, therefore it should be included in the emergency procedures training. Obviously, some places will be more at risk than others, such as businesses in airports and shopping centres, but even lower risk places should have a basic training in place. Through response training, with a particular focus on awareness and preparedness, only then can you potentially minimise the effects of terrorism.
What Terrorism Awareness Training Should Cover
As part of a company’s induction training, or as an annual training course, all employees need to be trained in these areas to be fully prepared if a terrorist attack should occur.
1. What is Terrorism?
- Definition of terrorism and its impact on the workplace
- The psychology of terrorism – including tactics, effects, common targets and how to minimise fear and stress
- How to identify and prevent a potential terrorist attack
2. Cyber-terrorism & Data Protection
- Definition of cyber-terrorism and the importance of understanding this growing threat
- Train staff to be skeptical of unknown emails and what preventive measures can be taken to minimise computer access elsewhere
- The ways to protect, store and manage sensitive data
3. Security of the Workplace Facility
- Identify and discuss emergency exits, restricted areas and access routes
- Train staff in the initiation of evacuation procedures
- Train staff in all security measures, from cameras and alarms to the importance of sign-in sheets and keeping I.D. badges safe
- Train staff in what ‘suspicious activity’ is, what to look out for and what to do about it
4. Security Risk Areas
- Delivery methods – how letters and packages can be targeted, how they should be managed safely, how to identify a suspicious package and what procedure to follow
- Travel safety
- Suspicious bags or packages left unattended/bomb threats – actions to take, questions to ask, who to inform of the threat
5. Response Training
- Essential workplace skills – patience, awareness, preparedness, staying alert and reducing panic in emergency situations
- Training – practicing searching for warning signs and the appropriate response
- Contacting the appropriate authorities
With this training included in all companies and refreshed on a regular basis, employers and employees will be more proactive in keeping each other and the public safe in the potential event of an attack.
Being prepared for a terrorist attack is primarily down to vigilance, from being aware of the warning signs to knowing how to respond to them. Therefore, by including this simple training with all other safety and emergency procedures, employees will be empowered in these situations and may even help to save lives. With something so simple that can make a massive impact, isn’t it worthwhile making sure your staff are threat aware?
What we can do for you:
If you’re interested in knowing more about threat awareness training for your staff, RGM are offering training courses developed by Counter Terrorism and Threat Specialists. If you need training or just advice, please don’t hesitate to contact us.