Security guards and officers provide safety and protection to just about any facility. These professionals ensure that our lives are safe from all types of danger. I find it admirable that they put their lives on the line not only to prevent crime but to give us the peace of mind we all deserve.
These officers provide essential services to every institution, especially as they lend support towards establishments and the people that they are guarding. As the first line of defense of facilities, these security guards have the capacity to work in different types of settings and environments.
For people looking to find security vacancies, I have set up this guide to further help hopefuls know everything they need to in order to gather necessary qualifications and find vacancies working in the security sector.
- What a Security Position Does
- Work Environment and Conditions
- Qualifications to Get a Security Vacancy Job
- Looking for Security Vacancies
What a Security Position Does
A security position is a type of job within the security sector. People who normally work in this industry include security guards, directors, and even transportation screeners. A security guard is someone who ensures the safety and protection of individuals and establishments alike.
I see them as the first line of defense for various institutions, particularly as they are tasked to patrol and monitor infrastructures in the hopes of stopping crime and other similar incidents.
These officers enforce the safety standards of the facility that they are guarding. Moreover, these professionals also guard the property of clients to prevent the potential loss of precious items, may they be personal or business-related. They also view CCTV cameras for monitoring purposes.
Most security positions require these experts to arm themselves with weapons to better equip them against probable crime-related events. With positions and vacancies available in virtually any type of field, one can expect tasks to vary accordingly.
Duties and Responsibilities
One of the main duties of security guards and directors includes monitoring the property and the premises. These experts mainly do this to prevent accidents, to assess potential areas of threat or damage, to minimize risks to individuals, prevent theft, vandalism, do crowd control, and the like.
These security officers also take the time to screen individuals and documents alike to determine the security status of these files and visitors, and by extension, the connection and relevance they pose to the right departments. They also escort visitors to their destination within the premises.
Apart from these, these security guards also take part in investigations regarding disturbances, breach of security, and other similar incidents by writing reports to inform the management. They also assist the policies and authorities during times of emergency.
Work Environment and Conditions
Security guards can work in different settings depending on their preference. Many of these officers work in institutions such as schools and universities, hospitals, airports, power companies, and even casinos and malls. Many also work for private firms and companies that have ties to high-profile clients.
Besides these, there are also guards who work in transportation, meaning their postings can take them not just on land, but also in the air, seas, and other similar facilities. Other officers may find postings in observation rooms to survey videos and audio but work in all types of conditions and weather.
Depending on their area of assignment, we can see them either patrolling the area by foot or by car. At times, even at night, we can see them roaming the area to monitor activity. Part of their job is also to view security cameras to find any suspicious activities that may occur throughout the day.
Given the varied range of activities and work settings, I think it is safe for me to say that the working hours of these officers can be all day or all night, with shifts usually eight hours or more. However, these can also differ depending on whether they are working full-time or part-time.
Salary Details and Job Outlook
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for security guards and positions is slated to increase by around 3% from 2019 to 2029. With the constant need for surveillance and protection, around 144,000 security vacancies are expected to open every year.
The growth in job vacancies can be attributed to the increasing number of establishments, such as casinos and gaming arenas around us. As technology advances and more video surveillance developments are made, officers may find themselves working alongside these in the future.
In 2020, the median pay for security guards was $31,050. Those who belonged to the upper 10% earned more than $51,600, while the lower 10% earned less than $21,930. These vary on the sector, with state government paying the highest at around $71,660 to gambling surveillance officers.
Qualifications to Get a Security Job
Security guards and gambling surveillance officers usually require a high school diploma. In addition to this, individuals preparing for these types of positions are also required to undergo on-the-job training to gain a deeper grasp of what the job posting entails.
While having a college degree is not required by any means, some companies and private firms that work with exclusive and high-profile clients prefer applicants to have an associate’s degree in police science or even criminal justice or a college degree in law enforcement.
Additional training is also required for applicants who wish to have a security position. Covered in these sessions are learning more about company protocols, first aid, crisis intervention, incident documentation, and proper communication, among many others.
Around eight hours each of pre-assignment training, on-the-job training, and annual training are also to be undertaken by these individuals. In addition to these, armed security officer also needs to be well versed in weapons training, especially as these are a delicate matter.
Other Essential Skills and Requirements for the Job
Individuals who are looking for security vacancies are required by their respective states to have a license. In order to do this, I find that they are urged to complete their training and pass the background check. They must also be at least 18 years of age, however, for casino and gaming facilities, you must be 21 years of age or older.
On top of these requirements, security positions in the field also require special skills. These include having keen observation skills essential for monitoring and investigation purposes. This goes alongside critical thinking skills to discern what is the best course of action in certain circumstances.
Furthermore, security officers in the field should also be adept in handling high-stress situations and knowing how to properly de-escalate these in order to prevent further damages or risks.
Looking for Security Vacancies
There are tons of security vacancies if you just know where to look. There are now more jobs posted not just on the internet, but also on more physical spaces and bulletin boards. Meanwhile, others are posted with security companies and firms, allowing them to find postings for us.
Because of this, utilizing both spaces can yield more opportunities in the long run. This allows me to apply for as many offers as possible and choose what works best for me. However, for most physical postings and security companies, applicants need to have a resume printed out already.
One of the ways that I usually like to start is to look for particular companies, institutions, or people that I would want to work for and work my way up from there. For example, I simply key in different variations of the keyword ‘security vacancies’ or ‘security officer jobs’.
Doing so shows a number of openings. However, for more specialized searches, I often opt to use job search platforms or go visit the website or online postings of companies directly.
Using Job Search Platforms
I like using job search platforms such as Indeed, Glassdoor, and Monster, since it provides me with numerous filters I can apply to find the security vacancy that’s right for me. I can personally recommend this to other people who are looking for similar postings.
These job search platforms give me the freedom to find jobs based on my desired location. Not only that, I can find security positions based on my experiences and credentials, as well as my desired salary range.
To better utilize these platforms I have mentioned, I advise users to create their respective profiles and upload their resumes. This way, the application becomes a breeze and applicants can just tap on interesting postings to course their application online.
Finding the right opportunity as a security officer is easier after being armed with the knowledge I have mentioned in this article.
With this information, I hope that aspiring applicants feel more empowered in moving towards a more fruitful path that provides safety and protection to individuals and premises alike.