Have You Thought About Working Security?
Here are the important things to know.
Becoming a security officer requires many things from you. A good training program is absolutely necessary because there is a lot of things to consider when dealing with people. Whether you are watching a warehouse or working a condominium gate, in the end you will be regulating people.
People will abuse you verbally and you cannot respond to them in the same manner. When you lower yourself to their level you become part of the problem. Temperament can be learned but it would help if you already understood that part. You will learn to be firm and authoritative in tone.
Security guard licensing is required in most states. There is unarmed guard training and armed guard training. Most security companies will not hire you unless you have a license in hand. Unarmed class and license fees will be approximately $150.00. Armed class training and license fees will be about $300.00. These costs are estimated and could be more or less in your state. Security work is open to both men and women. Some security work is great for retirees and part time positions are also available.
I'm asked at times how good is the company I'm working for. My stock answer is: "They are all bad." Depending upon what state you are living in will make a difference. Southern states are very low on the pay scale. Most companies start you pay at $8.00 per hour and train you at minimum wage. You can work your way up to $12.00 per hour over a period of time. Companies in the north around big cities pay much better. There are a lot of small companies around but it would be better to get hired by an established big company.
Basic qualifications are you must be 18 years of age, pass a background check, and complete classroom training. You will be drug tested prior to employment and checked on a random basis after that. You will be expected to work all shifts in the beginning until you can hold a regular shift. Visible body piercing's and tattoos are a not going to get you hired. Some companies will allow you to wear a long sleeved shirt to cover up but not many.
A security officer working in an armed capacity requires extra training because of the responsibilities involved. In the end analysis just having an armed guard license is not enough. The company that hires you as an armed officer must trust you. You have to realize that they are on the liability hook sponsoring you and whatever you do with that gun they are ultimately responsible.
As a security officer on duty you will be expected to know what to do in an emergency no matter where you are posted. It is your job to know your exact location, the location of all fire extinguishers and places you can call from for help. While not required for your license, it would be a good idea to take a first aid course and an AED, defibrillator, course.
Since you will be wearing a uniform you need to be aware of your surroundings at all times. The public may not be able to tell the difference between you and a police officer. A police officer has the power of arrest but a security officer does not. The exceptions are if you as a security officer witness a felony, arson, robbery, rape, etc., then you can take action but you are still a citizen. Your uniform will offer legal protection for you because it is a felony to strike a uniformed officer of any kind.
Being a security officer is a good career to have if you like to do a lot of walking because there are patrols to do. You must like to deal with people who are unruly and possibly dangerous. It is a position of authority among the public and almost all of them will respect you if you are fair with them.
I retired from the EJ&E Railroad after 33 years of service as locomotive engineer and I've written a book about my experiences. I've been an avid reader my entire life and even owned 4 used book stores at one time.
I'm a published author.