Linking HR and security

Issue 3 2021 Access Control & Identity Management

When companies implement employee-screening programmes, the task is often left to the human resources department and the rest of the company rolls their eyes at the red tape often involved in this process. The employee screening policy is implemented to ensure the risk of the company is managed and fraudsters do not enter the workplace, but the results of the vetting are not often linked to other areas in the business.

One of the effective ways of bringing security and HR together would be to link the employee screening programme to the access control system of the organisation.

The initial process would be to ensure that nobody is employed in a company, on a permanent or contract basis, unless the relevant level of employee screening has been conducted on the individual. Once the person has received the letter of appointment and has permission to work on a site, there needs to be a method of communication to the security department to allow that individual access to the site.

All organisations should have regular reviews of access control and screening of employees and again, a process would need to be put in place where these systems ‘talk’ to each other. Once there have been breaches of the access control policy, the HR department needs to be informed and the reason for that is perhaps some red flag that needs to be raised regarding the integrity or motive of the employee. Likewise, when staff are re-screened and any areas of risk are identified, this should be brought to the attention of the security department.

Another area that is often overlooked and could be one of the greatest risks in the conversation between the two departments of the business is the departing employee. How often do we hear the story of an ex-employee gaining access to the company, either physically or electronically and when the investigation is done there has been a total breakdown in communication between the various departments in a company.

Departments within any organisation need to talk to each other more to mitigate risk.


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