To determine what types of security guards training a security guard should receive, it is important to understand why training is important, what the different types of training are and what type of guards should be trained in which skills.
Why is training important?
The primary function of a security guards training is to keep people and property safe. Without adequate training, security guards will fail to perform their duties. In the worst-case scenario, a lack of training could lead to loss of life.
Proper training will give security guards the skills they need in order to provide protection against threats, identify and act on potential threats, manage emergencies effectively and give peace of mind to the people they are protection.
What are the different types of training?
The minimum level of training:
In most countries, the government will require security guards of any type to be licensed. The government will typically provide the license once a test has been written, and a specific number classroom learning hours have been completed. The government will not provide training, this will be left to certified companies. This level of training could be considered the minimum acceptable level of training for a security guard.
This training may prepare a guard for an entry level position but it will not be adequate for more advanced posts.
For any post that requires the security guard to be armed, firearm training is essential. There are many types of training and the level required will depend on the post itself. For example, a security guard posted in a bank will need basic handgun training while a guard responsible for cash in transit may be required to use assault rifles. Handgun training would include the use and maintenance of different types of weapons.
Defensive and offensive driving
If a guard is required to transport people or valuable cargo, they will need to be trained in advanced driving techniques. If they are in a situation where someone is trying to steal their cargo or kidnap their passenger, they will be trained in different ways of evading pursuers. This training includes technical skills and awareness training. Drivers need to be trained on how to identify potential vehicular threats and escape routes.
In almost all postings, a security guard will be expected to be able to subdue an individual who poses a threat until the relevant authorities arrive. This type of training would differ from civilian self-defense training. In civilian training, the primary objective when dealing with a threat is to escape. In security training, the objective is to neutralize the threat and detain them, while avoiding permanent bodily harm. Typically, this method of training would include martial arts and procedure based awareness training.
Situational awareness training
In order to be effective, security guards need to be able to identify and act on threats as quickly as possible. Ideally, a security guard will be able to identify a potential threat and act on it before it becomes a real one. This could include suspicious individuals or items. Security guards in posts that have a lot of irregular foot traffic will need advanced training on what to look for to identify a threat. For example, in an airport, guards will need to be trained on how to identify an item of luggage that is suspicious in an area that has hundreds of pieces of luggage. They would need to monitor the item and if it is not collected within a few minutes, it would be considered suspicious.
One of the greatest challenges of being a security guard is stress management. It is a job that requires constant focus and concentration. Security guards are expected to be constantly alert. This can create stress by having “unresolved danger”. While being alert, people use hormones like adrenaline to maintain focus on a threat. Once the threat has been dealt with, our bodies process the hormones and we return to normal. If the threat has not been dealt with, the stress hormones stay in our bodies and eventually cause us to become ill. Meditation and counseling have been proven to help deal with stress.
All security guards should have knowledge in basic first aid. One of the key functions of a security guard is to be a first responder in the event of an emergency. By training guards effectively, lives can be saved.
Soft skills training
A major component of any security position are the soft skills required to successfully do the job.In order to ensure due process when dealing with threats, especially individuals, there are processes and procedures that need to be followed. This is so that no guards can abuse their power and no criminals can claim that they were mistreated.