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Five Things to Remember When Working After Hours

Nov 21, 20072 mins
CSO and CISOIT LeadershipSurveillance

From letting people know where you are, to parking in the right spot, our quick guide to making it home safely

We’ve all done it—worked into the wee hours of the morning only to realize that we’re now alone, the parking lot is deserted, and no one knows where we are. Working late and on weekends is often a necessary evil, but it’s important to take precautions to avoid safety issues when you do have to burn the midnight oil. We talked to Kroll’s managing director, Timothy Horner, for some tips to keep you and your employees safe after hours.

Notify. Tell your boss that you’re working late. Notify internal security staff; in some cases this also includes building security. In fact, program the number for building security into your cell phone ahead of time. And don’t forget to tell your family so that they aren’t unduly alarmed when you don’t arrive in time for dinner.

Use common sense. Avoid unsecured areas, like common restrooms, fire staircases and back alleys. Use main transportation routes. If there’s a main elevator, use that instead of the fire stairs.

Use cameras to your advantage. Be aware of areas in your building that are monitored by closed-circuit TV and work only in those areas if possible. Also, be aware of what you leave on your desk when working late, taking extra care to safeguard your valuables.

Re-notify. When you leave the building at night, notify security and call your family so that they know to expect you. Be aware of what the corporate policy is on working late and abide by that policy.

Park smart. Before it gets too late, move your car in the parking lot to a well-lit area. If you are working in a metropolitan area, arrange for a car service or a cab to pick you up.

Common sense, says Horner, is the most effective tool for staying safe. Avoiding working late altogether is even better. But if you must, try to “do it as a team. Stay together while you’re working,” he says, “and leave the office together when you’re done.”

–Kathleen S. Carr