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Spotlight on Leadership 10-31-12
The D&D Daily e-Newsletter for the LP & Safety Industry


Home Depot's Asset Protection Team leading the way during Sandy

With Chris Canoles, Sr. Director of Asset Protection as
Team Lead of Operations Command Center

By Gus Downing
Publisher & Editor

Home Depot's Emergency Response Program & Sandy. Kicking into operation over a week ago, Home Depot activated their response teams to Sandy. With five operations rooms at their corporate office housing 200 corporate executives from various departments, the teams went to work on preparing for the storm. One room, pictured below, houses 75 merchants, one with 30 operations executives, two rooms with 40 each from the supply chain group, and the last room for 12 human resources executives. With key decision makers in each room and executives from Asset Protection, Legal, Safety, Store Operations, Procurement, Risk Management, Human Resources and Government Relations, the teams are structured to make quick decisions and ensure that Home Depot is responding effectively for the communities they serve and for their associates, their customers, and their stores.

As Marvin Ellison, EVP of Home Depot and a former asset protection executive himself, stated at an NRF LP conference a few years ago, asset protection continues to lead the way in Home Depot's response. With 45 asset protection volunteer teams of four executives each located throughout the U.S., Home Depot activated eight volunteer teams of four AP executives each. Traveling into the storm areas, the teams are first housed in pre-determined hotels that provide the maximum protection. Operating within a very structured program, these 32 asset protection managers are focused on helping to close down and re-open the affected stores. With safety as the absolute priority, these APM's have a role in the structural inspection review of their respective store prior to allowing anyone to re-enter the unit after the storm. They were also accompanied by over 100 off-duty police officers, provided by third party guard firms, and coming from locals in Florida to Texas, Arkansas, and even Missouri. These armed off-duty police officers, strictly there for precautionary measures, provide added security and are stationed in a predetermined yet flexible manner. Focused on overnight security and working mostly in pairs, these officers play a vital role in securing the locations and in helping to maintain a safe site throughout the event.

On one week tours, so to speak, this first wave of eight teams of 32 volunteer asset protection managers will most likely be followed by seven teams of four volunteer asset protection managers that will be focused on helping the stores manage the re-opening process and on helping to manage the increased customer needs that comes after such an event.

These 60 asset protection executives, all of whom volunteered for this assignment, are truly unsung heroes who you don't often read about or hear about. It's their dedication and commitment to help that defines them as being true leaders and people who want to make a difference. We salute them and we're honored to be able to share their story.

Home Depot Command Center, running Security, Operations and Logistic in the height of the storm. Home Depot Hurricane Command Center Emergency Response Captain Doug Spiron on the key products people need to be prepared for a hurricane. Although this video was from before the storm, it does a good job of showing the Command Center in action. (Source

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