This is a difficult question to answer, as the training you need to become a security guard will vary according to the country you intend to work in, your employer’s policies and what you’re guarding. In this article, we have covered some of the basics surrounding what training you will require to give you an idea of whether this is the career path for you.
What do guards actually do?
Security guards are charged with protecting both people and goods. Their duties will vary depending on your specific position and training, and there are several certifications available for guards who want to seek more responsibility.
If you want to work as an unarmed guard, most companies will not require any formal education beyond a high school diploma. The length of training required will depend on company policy, state laws and the facility in which you work. It is recommended that you are provided with a minimum 48 hours of course instruction and you may also be required to shadow an experienced guard.
If you want to work as an armed guard, however, your training will be longer and will likely include a separate licensing exam to ensure that you understand how to safely operate firearms. You may also learn how to make arrests and safely detain a criminal. For high-security locations, your training period might last several months and you may need to undergo periodic refreshers.
As a guard, you will be trained to protect locations against theft, fire, trespassing, vandalism and other crimes. In the event of an incident, you need to exercise good communication skills whilst interviewing witnesses, writing reports and testifying in court. You may patrol an area on foot or in a vehicle, whilst some locations may require you to be stationary at a podium or booth.
Certification & Licensing Information
Most states require that you pass a licensing exam in order to prove your comprehension of emergency procedures, public safety, security procedures and your legal rights. Licensing requirements vary by state – most, however, require a background check, fingerprinting and drug testing. You might also wish to obtain further certifications in your own time.
Although it might seem fairly simple to become a security guard, it is important to note that this is not a career path that should be chosen lightly. You could potentially be putting yourself in harms way everyday whilst on the job, so you have to be prepared for what could happen. If you think being a guard is the job for you, ensure that you seek appropriate training.