Security personnel make up a huge sector of the protective workforce, and for good reason. While break ins or theft aren’t always in the cards, a little piece of mind goes a long way. If you’re interested in pursuing a career in security, keep reading for everything you need to know to get started.

Keep it real.

Working in security is not something to take lightly. Security personnel, whether they be armed guards, private security or personal bodyguards, are often the first line of protection against outside threats. These positions require diligence, commitment and consistency, so we encourage anyone interested in a career in security to take their positions seriously.

Get familiar with the prerequisites.

While working in security isn’t as intense as law enforcement or the military, there are several steps required to be eligible for hire as security personnel. These requirements might vary depending on where you live, who you’re seeking employment with and the level of protection you’re providing.

In NY state, for example, security guards must complete an 8 Hour Pre-Assignment Training Course prior to submitting their application for a Security Guard Registration Card. Once you’ve received your proof of registration (issued by the Department of State) and completed new hire processes, you must complete a 16-Hour On-the-Job Training Course within 90 days of initial employment. Following this, an 8 Hour In Service Training course must be completed yearly.

Armed vs. Unarmed Security

When looking into security positions, keep in mind that employment requirements will vary drastically depending on whether or not you will be armed. In addition to the previous requirements, armed security guards are also required to meet additional eligibility criteria and complete extra training. Again, this may vary depending on your state of hire. In NY state, armed guards must hold a valid NY state pistol license, complete a 47-Hour Firearms Training Course for Security Guards and apply for a Special Armed Guard Registration Card.

A special 8 Hour In Service Training course is required yearly for armed guards as well. Though the requirements and responsibilities for armed personnel services are more demanding, they are offset by an increase in salary and a wider range of job opportunities.

Choose a specialty

As with many career choices, choosing a specialty will pay off in the long run. We encourage our security officers to cultivate their skills and expertise in one or two types of security and build on their experience within those sectors.

The choices range far and wide, including armed security, bodyguards for hire, venue security, loss prevention, private security and much more. When seeking out positions, consider your skills and availability; ask yourself some of the following questions:

  • Are you already training and certified to use firearms?
  • What do you want your work schedule to look like?
  • What kind of positions are in high demand in your area?
  • Answering these questions will help you find the right position.

Resources to get started.

If you’re just starting out, a good first step might be to visit your state’s local criminal justice webpage, where you can usually find government mandated requirements for working in security. Next, you can complete a quick google search for national security companies or companies specific to your area.

Many companies, like Fast Guard Security Service, have national headquarters as well as local offices. Companies like ours can offer a wide variety of opportunities and positions and work with you to build the career you’re looking for. When you’re ready to start applying, check out our Jobs tab to get the ball rolling.

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