The Definitive Guide: How To Become A Security Officer

Published on: 11 Sep 2018
security officer hero

What is a Security Officer?

  • Job Description

    Do you see yourself as a protector? Are you looking for a job that gives you some authority, responsibility and is rewarding? If you think you can deal with situations calmly and confidently whilst keeping people safe then this is the career for you.

    A security officer can be thrilling and exciting with each day being different from the last. You will be responsible for ensuring the premises, people and valuables are safe and secure, preventing theft and any illegal activities.

    There are many different roles you can take on, from door supervisor, to CCTV operator, or even a personal security guard for celebrities. You can explore your options and experience working in a range of positions and venues throughout your career.

  • Hours of Work

    In a full time position, you’ll be expected to work long hours, usually over 40 hours per week. This is likely to be shift work including evenings, late nights and weekends – depending on where you work. If you are working as a security officer in a nightclub you will be working until the early hours of the morning, however if you are working in a supermarket you may be working early mornings.

  • Main Responsibilities

    So, what will your main responsibilities be as a Security Officer?

    Duties will vary depending on the venue that you are working at but responsibilities typically include:

    • Supervising on the door for events
    • Monitoring premises and surveillance equipment
    • Patrolling and securing areas
    • Guarding cash
    • Restraining trespassers
    • Permitting entry
    • Search people and check identification
    • Search bags for suspicious items
    • Respond to alarms
    • Stay in contact with other security officers

Key Security Officer qualifications

Do you have the qualifications to get the job?

You won’t need a degree to become a security officer although it may help to be educated to GCSE level.

It is vital to obtain a Security Industry Authority (SIA) license if you are planning to work in the private security industry. The SIA license is a recognised training program that will be a great addition to your CV when applying for security officer jobs.

If you want to obtain a qualification to boost your knowledge in the industry and advance your CV, you can think about taking the following courses:

Vital Security Officer skills

Want to know if you’ve got what it takes? These are the skills you’ll need for the role:

  • Initiative
  • Physical fitness
  • Confidence
  • Ability to work with technical equipment such as CCTV
  • Ability to make quick decisions
  • Ability to follow instructions
  • Team work
  • Communication skills
  • Customer service

What is a Security Officer’s salary?

Now we’re getting down to the nitty gritty…

If you are just starting out in this career you can expect to earn between £13,000 and £16,000. This can rise to around £22,000 with experience. The salary will depend on factors such as the area you are working in, how much responsibility you have and your experience. A supervisor can earn up to £26,000.

security officer salary

How to become a Security Officer?

Now that you know what a Security Officer does, how do you become one?

Firstly, you will need to be over the age of 18 to apply to become a security officer. You will also need to pass an identity and criminal record check prior to starting work in security. Aside from that, all you will need is your Security Industry Authority (SIA) license and you are good to go.

How to develop your Security Officer career?

The next step after gaining experience as a security officer is to become a supervisor.

You will be given more responsibility, and this role could lead to a security management position. You could be directing multiple teams of security officers.

Career Opportunities