Security officers have an incredibly important role: keeping people safe. You might think that their job is straightforward, but there’s much more to it than meets the eye.

Security officers are employed for various roles. Some manage the security of corporate and private establishments, while others ensure the safety of construction sites and public events. No matter where they’re posted, a security officers’ job is to help keep operations running smoothly and maintain public safety at all times.

To become a security officer, they must undergo intensive training, develop various skills and attain formal accreditation to undertake a role with such high levels of risk and responsibility.

What Do Security Officers Do?

Although security officers work in many different areas and industries, most will carry out the following duties as part of their day to day routines:

  • Enforcing local laws, rules and policies.
  • Controlling access to buildings.
  • Monitoring CCTV, alarms and other surveillance systems.
  • Patrolling areas and performing security checks.
  • Responding to emergencies.
  • Completing activity and incident reports.

All of these tasks tie into one overarching principle: maintaining the safety and security of people and their possessions. With so many potential threats to security faced by businesses every day – from break-ins and theft to public disturbances and risks to health and safety – companies need to employ competent and capable guardians to protect their employees and the public.

Who Can Be a Security Officer?

Anyone that undertakes the role of a security officer must be qualified. The Security Industry Association (or SIA) is the statutory organisation responsible for regulating the private security industry in the UK. As of the early 2000s, it’s an offence for any establishment to use unlicensed security operatives. This means that all security officers must undergo specific training to get an SIA license before they can be legally employed in Great Britain.

What Skills Do Security Officers Need to Possess?

Security officers will develop an in-depth knowledge of security principles as part of their formal training. From guarding company premises to monitoring people’s behaviour, security guards need to be able to spot any potential danger before it becomes a larger issue.

They also require a high level of physical fitness to meet the demands of the role, and they must develop a range of effective communication skills so they can undertake their duties with confidence and professionalism. Experienced security officers are experts in defusing and resolving any potential conflict peacefully. They’re also well-equipped to handle situations that jeopardise the personal safety of themselves and others, should matters escalate.

While you might assume that security officers have a one-dimensional role, security personnel are trained in customer service. It’s part of their job to make people feel welcome and put them at ease to enhance a customer’s experience or make the public feel safe.

What Powers are Granted to Security Officers?

While fully-licensed security officers are highly trained, they aren’t granted any additional legal privileges. They have the same authority as any other UK citizen and, as such, are allowed to detain someone under a citizen’s arrest. They don’t have the same power as the police, but if they believe someone has committed an offence, they’re entitled to use reasonable force to protect themselves and the public from danger.

Why Do You Need Security Officers?

The mere presence of a security officer is an effective deterrent to potential criminals or troublemakers. Cardboard cut-outs of police officers used in shops across the country have proven to be successful in deterring shoplifters — showing that even the perceived presence of authoritative figures has a positive impact on people’s behaviour. While this remains a novel practice, it highlights the importance of real security officers. If a security issue should arise, there needs to be someone there to deal with the situation effectively.

Conclusion: Why Are Security Officers Important?

Without security officers standing by, there would be no deterrent for potential troublemakers or opportunistic criminals to cause harm to people and property. This can create tense and unpleasant atmospheres, affecting people’s enjoyment of public spaces and businesses’ operations.

Having SIA licensed security officers will give you peace of mind, allowing you to concentrate on running your business. Whether you need corporate security or security for a construction site, you’ll be able to focus on your business’ operations without having to deal with risks to your staff’s wellbeing. Members of the public are also protected, meaning you can manage your liability without the fear of disrepute should something happen on your property.

Interested in the benefits of experienced security for your business or project? Get in contact with our friendly and professional team today to see how we can help you protect your business and your employees.