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DPD group is the latest TAPA EMEA member to use the Association’s new FSR Multisite certification option to increase its adoption of TAPA’s Facility Security Requirements (FSR).

Launched in the 2020 revision of the FSR Standard, Independent Audit Body (IAB) multisite certification is designed to identify and promote operational efficiencies between sites so best practices can be shared, and to support a ‘team’ approach to obtaining and maintaining compliance with the TAPA Standard for security control and risk mitigation. Taking the multisite approach to FSR certification also helps to lower costs for companies across their networks as new certifications can list multiple sites under one parent certification.

Vigilant spoke to Gary Bailey, National Quality Manager North, DPDgroup UK about DPD’s use of the TAPA Standards…

When did DPD first adopt FSR?

We joined TAPA EMEA as members in 2005 to demonstrate to our customers that we were serious about security as we began working for a number of Telecoms customers. The aim was to be known as ‘the secure carrier’ within the industry. Our first FSR certified site was in Appleton Thorn, near Warrington, UK, which was approved as a Level A certified facility on 5 December of that year.

The first audit was completed by Barry Hughes-Jones, who carried on working with us for several years, approving and auditing our depots throughout mainland UK. Barry worked for our independent audit provider, SGS, and had a long career in security behind him. The advice Barry gave us has helped us to develop our security processes and build the TAPA Requirements into our existing and new sites.

Today, our team includes people who have been involved in the DPD TAPA journey since 2005; Peter Phillips attended the first approval and, after Barry retired a few years ago, Peter took over the position of having done the most TAPA FSR assessments in the UK. We follow a collaborative approach to TAPA through our Quality and Security teams, with both teams working together to plan, implement, audit and support the FSR assessments across the DPDgroup UK sites.

What’s the value of FSR certification to your business?

Our membership of TAPA EMEA, and FSR certification, is something more and more of our customers are interested in. It gives them the assurance that we value their business and have relevant processes in place to keep their products safe whilst in our care.

Many of our customers are TAPA EMEA members, so they understand the importance and benefits it brings. Our involvement with TAPA and the FSR certification programme is becoming more important as it gives synergies with the DPDgroup UK ISO27001 IT Security and AEO approvals we also hold. We talk about TAPA’s FSR to our external approval bodies for both of these, as many of the requirements are the same.

How do you promote your TAPA Standards certifications to customers?

We have a Security section on the DPD UK public website that highlights our TAPA EMEA membership and which provides information about the benefits it brings to DPDgroup UK. Our Sales team collateral includes the same information, so every potential customer has the assurance that we’re serious about keeping their products safe and secure whilst in our care.

Why is FSR Multisite so appealing?

The multisite certification rationalises our TAPA FSR approvals and allows us to manage our time a lot better. It gives us the benefit of the Central Function audits annually, which has never been done before.

There are some cost benefits but the assurance of having an external assessment of our central processes is a big benefit.

How easy have you found the multisite certification process?

If we had bene new to TAPA and didn’t have other external approvals that work in the same way, we would have struggled. It presented some challenges but the DPD Quality and Security teams, along with the individual sites, have embraced the requirements, and we’ve been supported in the process by SGS and by TAPA EMEA’s Standards Team.

So, how will FSR Multisite enable you to accelerate your FSR certification programme?

The FSR Multisite option will allow us to add the 15 new sites we opened in 2019 and last year in one go, rather than booking an individual site assessment with our audit provider, SGS. As more businesses look for TAPA Security Standards’ approvals, the availability of independent auditing assessors is reducing, so, if we still continued with a single site approval approach, based on the number of depots we have, we'd have over 2 months of assessments every 3 years if all sites were approved in the same year.

FSR Multisite gives us the flexibility of adopting the same approach as we move forwards in the coming years, where we will build new depots, carry out the FSR assessment using our trained staff, and then add them to our multisite certificate once validated by SGS and TAPA EMEA.

In your opinion, how will FSR Multisite support the growth of TAPA’s FSR Standard across the EMEA region?

We welcome the multisite option as it is in line with other external approvals we hold within DPDgroup (ISO9001, ISO14001). These other approvals follow the same process of Central Function process and procedure checks, followed by sampling of a number of approved sites. We’re hoping that more businesses will see the value in using this option.

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