Experts discuss the need for structure in HSE

Aligned structure and strict reporting lines are key to proper management

Panellists on stage.
Panellists on stage.

Experts at the Hotelier Middle East: Safety & Security Summit 2015 discussed the importance of structuring the HSE/security department correctly.

Speaking during a panel discussion titled “How to structure your HSE/security department”, FRHI executive director of risk management Richard Higgins spoke about changes currently being made within the group’s global security structure.

Higgins joined the group in 2014 as head of risk management, and is working on developing an aligned structure.

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He explained: “The hotels all have different responsibilities – one hotel may have a security manager, another may have a loss prevention manager, risk manager, etc. So each hotel currently has a different structure.

“What I’m working on is aligning that structure so that we have regional risk managers that look after safety and security. They will also be responsible for coordination and business opportunity on behalf of their general managers, who will then report to regional senior vice presidents of operations.”
Jumeirah Group group director of HSE Craig Cunningham also talked through the Dubai-based group’s security and HSE operations.

“We have a group director to support the global properties who reports to the chief executive officer and within my team it is be a mixture of resources – some specialist resources that we’ve brought in to look at compliance and aspects of compliance and also supporting the business in terms of critical safety systems which would be things like a fire matrix.

“If we have smaller properties or city centre properties outside the UAE, we might have a combined resource there which would be an HSE or security resource with a reporting line to me and also a reporting line to the general manager. In Dubai, where we operate a very large resort business, I think it is important that we have dedicated HSE resources on the site. And most of the resources in Dubai have a direct reporting line to me and the GM of the business.”

Cunningham also pointed out the need to have a solid structure in place, with Jumeirah’s rapidly growing portfolio.

“We as an organisation have doubled in size over the last three to four years and the prospect is that will happen again in the coming years. And I think that’s an important aspect of how you structure these departments to meet the needs of the current situation,” he said.

The Hotelier Middle East: Safety & Security Summit was held on June 2 at Grosvenor House, Dubai and was sponsored by MVP Tech, Vingcard Elsafe, Arecont Vision, Pelco, and World Security.
 

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