Security officers are responsible for protecting people and property from theft, illegal activity and harm. To do this effectively, security officers must have adequate training, patience, strong powers of observation and the ability to make decisions quickly. Additionally, they must have a keen sense of curiosity and demonstrable an ability to identify suspicious activity and deter or detain anyone with a criminal agenda. Strong people skills are also a must, as de-escalating situations before they turn violent or aggressive can also be a big part of the job description.
If this sounds like you, you could be on track for a varied and diverse career in the security industry.
To become a security guard, you’ll need to be aged 18 or above, able to pass identity and criminal record checks and must hold a valid Security Industry Authority (SIA) licence. An SIA licence confirms that you are a “fit and proper” person capable of fulfilling a security role and have completed the appropriate training. It’s illegal to undertake any ‘licensable activities’ without first holding a licence.
If you have a criminal record, you’re not automatically disqualified from security officer roles. The SIA is responsible for deciding whether an offence should prohibit someone from entering the industry. To make its decision, the SIA assess the following criteria:
You can use the SIA’s free criminal record indicator to get a good idea of whether you’ll pass the criminality criteria.
Throughout their career, security staff often find themselves in a wide range of roles. Some of these roles may require you to complete additional training or certification.
Some of these security roles include:
Though these security roles are quite different, they each require some key transferable skills:
Additionally, holding a driver’s licence will make you a more desirable candidate and open you to more types of positions in different locations.
With experience, security officers can advance to senior security officer positions, and then further into supervisory roles. With additional qualifications, you could progress into security management, training, or even set up your own security company.
The security industry is a growing sector in the UK and, despite the challenges of 2020 and COVID-19, we predict that it will continue to grow and expand in the future, just as it did before the pandemic. Private security is one of those services that is vital to society and will always be needed; so much so that some have called it the ‘fourth emergency service’.
The private security sector is also remarkable for its flexibility. In a sense, it is what you make it. Whether you’re looking for a long, fulfilling career or part-time hours, want to be on the ground or in the office, there’s something for everyone in the security sector.
Churchill Security is a leading cross-industry security company supplying professional and comprehensive security solutions to organisations seeking expert Security Guards, CCTV & Event Security, Key Holding & Alarm Response, Mobile Patrols and Thermal Imaging & People Flow.
To find out more about how Churchill Security can protect your business, contact us today.