Over the weekend you may have seen an article on TV showing a raging fire in a warehouse. All the stock in the building and adjacent buildings has been lost; the Chief Fire Officer cannot confirm that all those that were in the warehouse when the fire started have been accounted for and is suggesting that fire was probably caused by arsonists.

Imagine being in this situation and how devastating it would be… ‘Thank goodness that was not us’ you may say to a fellow Director on Monday; but could it have happened to you and what are you doing now to prevent your company from having to suffer such devastating circumstances?

This scenario was discussed when we set up our Risk Management Bureau. Where could you go to get Crisis Management and Business Continuity, Health & Safety and Security advice? Our vision was and is to provide an accessible source of competent advice, which if used, will reduce any company’s risk profile, and be a go-to source of information and help when attempting to assess risk.

At the Anglian Business Exhibition held in Ipswich in 2014 a survey by Ashridge Security showed that 23% of companies surveyed were concerned that if there was a break-in to their property, would the burglars subsequently leave a calling card by setting fire to the building? MVC regularly advise business on the importance of having a practical and effective fire risk assessment i.e. who is in the building and Wagstaff & Associates has been approached on what plans need to be in place to respond to various seemingly disastrous scenarios.

Making sure that your company is adhering to The Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 is a good starting point for ensuring all risks are assessed. By auditing where you are in relation to this key piece of legislation will create a clear picture as to where there are gaps in your protection strategy. Make sure that, as Ashridge ask, you protect your people and your assets. Recovering from a serious accident where an employee, contractor or a member of the general public has been hurt or killed will put financial performance into stark perspective.

The British Continuity Institute explains that “Business Continuity Management is a holistic management process that identifies potential impacts that threaten an organisation and provides a framework for building resilience and the capability for an effective response that safeguards the interests of its key stakeholders, reputation, brand and value creating activities”.

Spend some time consulting with MVC’s Risk Management Bureau and give yourself the comfort of knowing that you are taking positive steps to reduce such an incidence from happening. As my Secret Santa mug says ‘A little risk management saves a lot of fan cleaning’!!