Best practices for security guards

A security guard holds a position of great responsibility in any organisation they work in. The phrase ‘work in’ is important because often guards aren’t employed by the company they’re guarding, but by a specialist security firm.

What are the best practices for recruiting and selecting security staff, and what should you ask your contractor to confirm?

Who Is the Contractor?

It always pays to check out a company before you do business with them. Find out who the owner of the company is, and what their principles and values are.

Enquire whether the company is properly registered and professionally certified. A responsible company should have two years’ fully audited trading accounts, plus other evidence of financial viability. Make sure too, that they have good quality, secure, administrative premises.

It’s important to check that the security contractor is correctly insured. This isn’t just to protect them; it’s to protect you too. Make sure you have a formal contract in place and that you’ve read and understood the terms and conditions.

Who Do They Employ?

As well as checking the background of the contractor, try to gain an understanding of the sorts of people they employ. Security guards are there to protect you and things that are valuable to you. They often have unrivalled access to the assets you’re trying to protect, and that makes it a very tempting role for people with dishonest intentions. How many robberies do we hear about where there was ‘a man on the inside’?

What procedures does the company follow to vet its staff? A responsible security company will contact all previous employers the individual has worked for during the last five years. They’ll do a thorough retrospective vetting for that period and account for any gaps or inconsistencies. This work should be carried out by a senior member of staff, who thoroughly documents their findings.

Terms And Conditions

Often when you recruit through a contractor, the operative’s terms and conditions couldn’t be further from your mind. But when its security work, such considerations are very important. A poor working environment can breed resentment, and that may rebound on you, the customer.

First, check the wages. Decent remuneration is the best guarantor of honesty and probity in any profession, so make sure your security guard is earning his or her fair share. Also, find out what their sick pay and holiday entitlement are like. If they’re working too long for their money and not getting adequate breaks, not only are they at risk of making mistakes through tiredness, but they can be compromised in other ways.

Somebody who is struggling to pay their mortgage or put food on their kids’ plates is a real risk to those who would seek to exploit their position for gain. It’s often said that happy staff are more productive, and that’s never truer than in the security industry.

For a responsible company supplying security solutions of the highest quality, look no further than Hallmark Security. Whether you’re looking to hire a security guard or seeking a security role, we can help you out. Get in touch with us today.