The Importance of Retail Security Guards

Over the last few years, there has been a rise in thefts within the retail sector. For many businesses, not utilising retail security guards puts you at a much higher risk, than businesses that have a regular retail security provision.

Threatening behaviour, in-store theft and loss in revenue mean that businesses and staff can suffer greatly. The addition of expert retail security guards within your business or businesses can help to safeguard not only your premises, stock but also your employees and your customers.

 

Do I need a retail security guard?

The simple answer is yes. It might sound like an obvious answer, but the truth is that you’re probably putting your business and your people at risk without having a regular retail security guard on site within your retail store.

Recently we witnessed an unnerving event at a local supermarket, when two men entered the store and started to disrupt and distract two of the young shop assistants, by asking them both inappropriate questions and constantly looking around at the security cameras. Luckily, the in-store retail security guard and the store’s manager managed to diffuse the situation, by asking the men to leave. A few days’ later, the local news reported another local store had been targeted by theft, however, unfortunately, the store in question did not have the proper security provision in place and subsequently had money from the tills stolen.

 

How do I select the right retail security guards?

You’ll need to find out exactly what you and your business needs from the service that retail security provides. Do you need a team of guards, or just one? Do you require a permanent guard on site or a guard that only works during busy periods, such as weekends? Once you’ve ascertained these questions, you should look for a reputable security management company who can work with you to create a bespoke, cost-effective service that suits your business needs.

A good security company will also ensure that your needs are met and will work with you closely to ensure that your retail security guards are fully SIA licensed and highly trained. They will also be able to provide you with regular reports about their tasks. A reputable firm will also be able to advise on how best to ensure that their retail security guard team is providing you the best service and will work with you to try plan, manage and implement their strategy to make sure that your business doesn’t lose revenue or customers.

In this day and age, don’t let the risk of petty theft, fraud and crime ruin your retail business. Choosing the right retail security guard provision can help to safeguard and futureproof your business.

The Rise of CCTV

Here’s a question for you. Which country has the most CCTV cameras per head? If Control-Roomyou were thinking the USA, China or Japan, you’d be wrong. It’s actually the UK! That’s right, according to those in the know, there are approximately 2.5 million CCTV cameras in the UK alone, and that makes up almost 20% of the world’s cameras. Incredibly, though, it’s thought that there is apparently one CCTV camera for every 14 people.

What does CCTV stand for?

CCTV stands for Closed Circuit TV and these surveillance cameras are used by security services, businesses, domestic properties across the country.

Do I need CCTV?

For those who want to know that they are fully protected from criminal activity such as thefts, criminal damage, intruders etc., CCTV plays a huge role. It’s been proven to be a highly effective form of deterrent and more and more businesses are looking for SIA approved companies offering security services to manage their CCTV provision. It’s fast becoming one of the most sought after security service in the UK.

Some total security services companies will also provide a 24 hour monitored CCTV service. This means that highly trained and experienced staff will monitor the camera footage and also inform you if any alarms on your property have been triggered.

If you’re interested in getting CCTV for business use or even domestic use, you’ll want to find a reputable security company who can install and manage the CCTV on your behalf. Ideally, you’ll want to work with a company that can offer you a range of security services, such as CCTV, key holding, manned guarding and mobile patrol services. Each of these areas works in conjunction with the other.

Having the addition of CCTV as part of your security provision makes perfect business sense to ensure that your livelihood is protected from the outside, in.

SIA Licence

SIA Licence

SIA licence new and renewal service will resume on 6th July from this date onwards applications should be processed through your employer, you also need to create a personal account and link it to your employer. The web address link below has useful videos to explain the changes.

http://www.sia.homeoffice.gov.uk/Pages/changes-videos-applicants.aspx

On another note I was returning from undertaking customer care training which within the security industry is a fine balancing line, between welcoming customers and preventing unacceptable behaviour is a skill that is learnt through training and experience.

Recently, when I was travelling on the London Underground a man started to announce his presence to the commuters initially I thought this person was begging. This was not the case he had a board with his contact details asking if anyone could offer him a job to take a picture of his details, his difficulty was not having a permanent address. He was willing to undertake any job. The mood in the carriage when I left was of good will towards this individual and offers from passengers with information of charities that could help and pictures taken of his details. How refreshing.

Applying to work at an SIA Approved Security Company

There is a long list of documents that need to be provided when undertaking security training and applying to work for a SIA Approved security company. It does not stop there as an employee it is important to ensure your passport is up to date and any work permits if not renewed on time will prevent you from working. Your employer needs any renewed original documents so they can be recorded as soon as you receive them. As with the SIA licence, change of address should also be given to your employer.

Emergency contact numbers are also very important if your employer needs to contact your next of kin.  If you change your mobile number or any contact details, then these too need to be updated with your employer. All of these are easily forgotten but when the need arises if not updated then they can cause a lot of difficulty.  As a rule dates of birth and national insurance numbers do not change!

 

Foot Note

The Manchester United evacuation in May 2016 of the ground has highlighted quite a few issues one of which is one of the security companies had claimed it was SIA approved. To check any company is SIA approved the SIA web site gives a full list of all approved companies for clients and staff it is always best to check to ensure standards are being met by the Security Company from operations to employment.

sia-approved-contractor

Five Tips For Choosing Event Security

Event security is one of the most important factors for anyone who is planning an event.

Professional Security Services

With summer on our doorstep, it means that there are hundreds, if not thousands of sporting events and music festivals taking place up and down the country. This ultimately means that as well as your business and employees’ safety, you’re also responsible for Joe Public attending the event in question.

With the rise in the number of threats not only at events but outside event grounds, now, more than ever means that event security is a hot topic.

But of course, it’s not just high-profile sporting events and festivals that require event security. Conferences, corporate events, VIP events, concerts, and both small and large-scale events require tight security, especially in light of recent security breaches. Take a look at our tips for choosing the right event security.

Our Top 5 Event Security Tips

  1. Opt for an all-in-one solution

Whilst you could get yourself one or two event security guards to help with your event, your best bet would be to hire a security company that has a professional and experienced team who can manage all elements of your event security on your behalf. From licensed door supervisors and trained stewards to account managers, you won’t have to worry about dealing with the security detail.

  1. Choose a security team with a range of skills

This might sound like a no-brainer, but choosing a security team that has the necessary experience to help look after your event is essential. If your event is a large-scale sporting affair, then you’ll need a team who can manage and control crowds and search for potential threats. If your business event is smaller but requires dealing with VIPs and dignitaries, then your event security team will need to be able to work with a different type of clientele.

  1. Good communication is key

We don’t mean ensuring that your event security team know when and where they should be. In this particular instance, we’re referring to how well your security team communicates with you guests! Depending on your event, you’ll need to rely on the communication skills of your event security. From the moment that your guests or attendees arrive at the event, to the moment they leave, (as well as anything else that requires the intervention of event security during the event itself) will require staff who can conform to your needs and requirements. Ensuring that the team can deal with clients, guests and attendees in a professional manner is a must!

  1. Plan, plan and then plan some more

The great thing about dealing with an experienced and highly skilled security company is that you’ll have total peace of mind when it comes to the planning and running of your event. A good security company worth their salt will be able to help you plan your event down to the tiniest detail. More often than not, it can be easy to overlook certain details. So working with a dedicated security company will mean that an account manager will be on hand to ensure that all elements of event security are covered. And whilst you won’t be able to plan for the unforeseeable, your account manager will be able to access any potential risks and work out the best way to protect you from any issues.

  1. Ensure that your event security team has the right licenses

You’ll want to ensure that any event security team, or company that you work for one off, or ongoing events with complies with all the necessary accreditations and licenses. All professional and fully trained teams will comply with the BS ISO 9001 standard, which forms the basis of most company’s quality procedures, and additionally BS 7858 and BS 7499 which is the British Standard.

Running an event can be complicated. Don’t let poorly handled event security be the reason your guests and attendees remember your event. Follow our top tips to event success!

Key Holding Services – The Key to Your Business’ Success

How many times have you reached into your pocket, desk drawer or bag and had that sudden feeling of dread wash over you? Your keys are not where you thought they were! In fact, they’re nowhere close to hand, thus leaving you in a slightly awkward situation of calling for backup from someone who has the spare!

In reality, this happens a lot. You’d be forgiven for thinking that someone will always have a spare set to help you out of a sticky situation. And rightly so, but what if you’re a business? What if you lock up on a Friday evening and head off for the weekend, taking the only set of keys with you? All manner of things could happen whilst you’re away, a burglary or fire might take place for instance. It’s unlikely that your workforce will be able to sort out any issues for you in your absence.

The reality is that if your business has fallen foul to intruders, you won’t want to deal with any security issues yourself. Instead, you’ll want a specially trained security guard who has a set of your keys to hand to sort the problem for you. This is where key holding comes into play.

Key Holding Services have seen a boost over the last few years, with more and more businesses using independent key holding companies to look after their keys and respond to any security issues. These reputable companies provide key holding services and emergency alarm response to commercial businesses, both big and small across the UK.

What are the benefits to Key Holding?

Think about how many keys you use on a daily basis; house keys, car keys, locker keys, petty cash keys, suitcase keys, padlock keys, key fobs, security tokens, the list goes on and on. Whilst we probably have spare sets of house, car and padlock keys, we’re unlikely to have more than one key fob or security token. For businesses, this is especially true and so there are definitely advantages to using a key holding services company, such as:

  • Reliable – Key holding companies by nature are reliable. If there is an emergency call out, they are the first port of call for most businesses;
  • Expert – Companies that offer key holding services ensure that they understand the business inside out. They work with business owners to cover all elements of the business, including managing security situations and dealing with alarm companies to leave the premise secure;
  • Reputable A good key holding services company is worth their weight in gold. You should ensure that they are compliant with all the relevant licenses and accreditations;
  • Protection – Uniformed response teams act as a security team for your business, your premises and your employees, peace of mind without a doubt;
  • 24/7 – There is no 9-5 when it comes to key holding companies. They operate a 24/7 service, which ensures that your business is fully covered and protected at all times;
  • Speed – If someone breaks into your premises, or there is an emergency, time is always of the essence. A trained key holding professional will be able to attend the emergency on your behalf and will assess the situation;
  • Safety – By employing a key holding company, you lessen the risk to your staff or employees;
  • Professional – All key movements are logged and are audited on a regular basis by key holding response teams. You should also receive a written report following each and every call out with details of the incident.

 

Business owners aren’t the only ones who can take advantage of utilising key holding services. Homeowners who find themselves overseas, or away for long durations and use key holding services will be safe in the knowledge that their domestic property will be looked after until they return.

 

Key holding companies can be a valuable source of additional security for your business. If you’re not already using one, it’s highly advised that you work with a reputable company for all your key holding security needs.

 

Have you or your business used a key holding company or key holding service? Let us know.

Security Jobs – Who are you?

For all individuals working in the security industry it is important to keep employment documents and have a digital copy so when looking for a security job, prospective employers can undertake a 5 year employment check or in some cases 10 years to meet BS 7858.

The more documented information the better, to speed up the employment checking process. Original documents should be kept in a safe place readily to hand, P45’s, P60’s, wages slips, all providing evidence of employment especially if the company you worked for is no longer trading.

Unemployment claim letters for the periods not working, College and University course letters while studying.

A record on CV or document giving accurate dates of employment with full company address and contact details not necessarily the site you worked on.
Before anyone can be offered a permanent position a 5 year screening has to be completed within 12 weeks or 10 year 16 weeks screening after conditional employment offer.

Personal reference not a relative or employer know personally to you for two years.

When applying for a security job, it is also important to check passport, visa, driving licence, SIA licence are all up to date and with currant address. Checks will also be made on CCJ’s, Criminal convictions and bankruptcy.

This makes your employment process easier for the employer and your employment less problematic.