Booths and Shacks

Booths and Shacks

For High-Security Businesses, Guard Shacks Are a Must

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Security is a concern for all businesses, but some places require extra safety measures simply because of the nature of their work. For research labs, power plants, or any business that handles large volumes of sensitive data, security is going to be a higher priority. While guard shacks are only one piece of a building's security system, they add an important component. Here are some of their benefits and costs.

A strong perimeter

Having guards inside a building is a business standard, but shacks allow you to widen that security perimeter. That broader presence will ring your building, monitoring incoming and outgoing traffic at a safe distance from the actual edifice - an extra step that high-needs organizations should consider. Guard shacks also mean you're including vehicle monitoing in your security inspection, instead of merely keeping an eye on people and what they may be carrying when they come in your building.

And as in just about everything, appearances are important: A guard booth's mere presence suggests that the company is serious about security, and that alone is often enough to dissuade criminals from attempting a breach.

Guard Patrol Booth

In addition to personnel and vehicle entry control, guard booths can also be customized to handle mail receipts. In an era of bioterrorism, having a mail-processing center outside the main building is a smart strategy for blocking materials.

Balancing cost and strength

With an unlimited budget, virtually any company can turn itself into Fort Knox; but of course, most companies have limited budgets. When evaluating guard shacks, pinpoint a few requirements specific to your needs, and evaluate vendors' offerings based on those necessities.

For example, if you run a power plant or critical utility, you will want higher-tech booths with additional strength supports and communications capabilities. A booth with these high-end capabilities can cost $8,000 and up depending on what features you need - such as biohazard protection, bullet-resistant glass, reinforced gates, and many other options. On the other hand, if you're a retail operation that wants to secure your loading docks, you probably only need a basic shelter for a guard to sit in. These types of booths can be found in the range of $5,000-$10,000.

When making your purchase, it is important to work with an expert to do a security audit. These costs vary widely - from between $15,000 to $90,000 - depending on the size of your business and level of security you need. Security consultants will offer specific estimates after you answer a few basic questions about your business. That will give you an idea of the ranges you're dealing with.

It is best to go through the physical security plan and evaluate which portions of your perimeter need which security precautions. For example, a main visitors' entrance is going to have different needs than a delivery entrance, but both will need to be carefully policed for security threats. Start out with a plan, and then select the shacks that will work best for you.

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