September 11 Terrorist Attacks Have Had Lasting Impact On Company Security

September 10, 2003 ( - The terrorists attacks of September 11, 2001 had a lasting effect on US companies, most notably in changes made to company emergency plans.

Overall, more than six out of 10 (64%) human resource professionals polled by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) responded to putting higher security provisions in place as the most lasting changes following the September 11 th attacks. Similarly, nearly half (48%) have higher expectations of employers for security. Additionally, tougher measurers are being taken in employee screenings before hire (31%).

The workplace has noticed impacts following the attacks as well, with 27% of companies doing more training in crisis management and 22% saying employees are more wary of their work environment. Not surprisingly, 16% of respondents noted higher stress levels in the workplace and 12% a greater use of employee assistance programs. Other workplace changes include:

  • 15% – HR is relied on more for its expertise and input
  • 13% – employees are more caring towards one another
  • 6% – other.

Elsewhere, lasting impacts were seen in how companies conduct their business travel and its perception. Thirty-four percent of respondents that do not consider travel as glamorous, with 26% of businesses curtailing business travel and nearly a quarter (24%) saying employees are reluctant to travel for business. And for one in 10 employers, business events have been cancelled altogether.

The survey was based on the responses of 408 randomly selected human resource professionals.