Raising standards in training and development

10 July 2018

In the latest edition of Security Buyer, our Head of Academy Operations, Mark Barber, looks at raising standards in training and development.

The security industry has been slow to recognise the importance of training. But at Securitas, we strive to improve the perception of the security officer and the industry as a whole.  In September 2015, Securitas UK opened the industry’s first, and only, City & Guilds accredited Training and Development Academy. Located in Milton Keynes, the Academy delivers training and development for all employees, with a particular focus on security officers.

With an in-house team of trainers and assessors, 53 courses are currently available at the Academy, ranging from operational skills, first aid and customer experience modules to professional skills.

At Securitas, we believe it’s no longer enough for officers to be just SIA qualified. Securitas’ Protective Services Officer (PSO) programme is a step change in how security officers are trained. Over the course of 14 months, officers are trained and City & Guilds certified in five different modules, which increases and broadens their skill base for our clients.  

These vital skills, which include customer service and counter terrorism training, reflect the threats officers now deal with on a daily basis. The environments in which our officers operate is constantly changing, and it’s important they’re prepared to deal with all risks and threats.

Each officer has different requirements, and by carrying out a skills gap analysis, we tailor the training so it’s unique to their professional and personal needs. The transferable skills they gain will reflect positively on their CV, and should they leave Securitas, will help them in their next security role.

Training and development links strongly to Securitas’ commitment to pay all officers the real Living Wage by the end of 2020. As part of this journey, Securitas UK has introduced a higher minimum wage of £8.03 (twenty pence higher than the National Minimal Wage).

Clients expect better qualified, highly-engaged officers, and rightly so, but it’s important clients support our efforts to pay a wage that meets the cost of living.

The role of security officer provides enormous opportunities for personal growth and development. At Securitas, we have seen many individuals progress from officer to Service Delivery Manager (SDM), Protective Services Branch Manager (PSBM) or Area Director.

We are proud of the training delivered to date, but we always strive to do more. We are currently looking at the introduction of City & Guilds digital credentials, which will let employees share their skills via social media profiles, in an email signature or online CV.

To read the full article, pick up the latest copy of Security Buyer magazine.