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Tenants are becoming more security focused and expect a security strategy to be in place in the buildings they occupy to protect their staff, property, assets and business continuity. According to Darren Wood, Director of Security Consultancy at Cundall, property owners and estates managers must now ensure that they have a clear security strategy, not only to meet planning requirements, but also so they can sell the safety of their building or development to their potential new tenants. Wood’s security consultancy team has won some £1.8m of new business and securing and delivering projects in the UK, Europe and Asia.

He says: “Recent high-profile terrorism incidents in London and Manchester have heightened public awareness and shown us that terrorism can affect any of us as we go about our daily lives. Anything that we can do to try and reduce the likelihood or consequence of an incident is very important to tenants and businesses who want to maintain business continuity in the event of a security incident.”

He warns, however, that it is in the interests of property owners and estate managers to look at their security issues in a holistic fashion and not in silo, as is often the case. While Cundall’s security team are responding to threats from hostile vehicles, improvised explosive devices and defining security measures in the face of a marauding terrorist attack, some 70 percent of its growth is in securing data centres, helping to protect personal and business data. Heightened awareness of security by property clients has seen the security consultancy team grow over the last 12 months from one to eight people based in the UK and Asia offering multi-disciplinary security consultancy services, with further expansion planned for Australia and potential expansion into the Middle East.

He says: “The role of a security consultant can be subjective and can mean different things to different people. In the construction and property industry if someone asks ‘are you a security consultant?’ we need to be able to say yes to everything, whether this means being a security risk assessor, specialist blast assessor or electronic security (video surveillance, access control) engineer. Clients need to understand the security threats, risks and vulnerabilities to their people, property, assets and business. Once we understand their risk profile we can look to mitigate these risks by using physical and electronic security solutions and can then deliver the engineering design of those solutions.

“Over the last 12 months we have been working for a number of workplace clients in London and Manchester where the owner / developer wants to have a clear security strategy to ensure that they can sell the safety of their development to their potential new tenants. We have also been working with a client to deliver the security solutions design to support their new global data centre construction programme. We have been appointed on a number of projects delivering the detailed design for the physical and electronic security systems. The key client driver here is keeping their data centres (and therefore theirs / their customers data) safe.”

Visit www.cundall.com.

Photo: GPU (Government Property Unit) New Bailey, in Manchester city centre, by Make Architects / Muse Developments.


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