When you think of a security officer, you probably picture a guard at a warehouse or walking through a mall, or maybe one standing post at the gate of your employer. While those still are some of the basic duties of a private security force, there are many other duties and responsibilities often overlooked by the general public. As the industry continues to grow, private security can now be found doing much more than guarding a cold factory at three in the morning.
The use of private security forces to provide traditional physical security for construction sites, apartment complexes, office buildings, and other assets that need guarding continues to drive the growth of the private security industry, but so does a new breed of non-traditional services being requested by businesses who once provided the service internally, or not at all.
A recent security business seminar led by Rick McCann, founder and CEO of Private Officer International, gave security company owners insight into 15 new areas of security industry growth, and included the tools and marketing methods to approach the expanding market and to capture those non-traditional contracts.
"We've pushed the limits of the normal uniform security services," McCann said, and "now it's time to fill the gaps of security related but non-traditional services that many businesses are seeking." Some of the new growth services that McCann spoke of in the seminar included providing onsite drug and alcohol testing, accident re-creation, and reporting for industrial accidents, slips and falls, and traffic collisions occurring on private property. Other services that are also being requested include traffic and parking enforcement, lifeguards, and other public safety oriented services not normally provided by contract security firms.
McCann points to Auburn University as a great example of unusual extended services that clients are seeking. Auburn officials hired a Montgomery, Alabama based security agency to enforce curfews for their football team members during the season, and to escort them back to their dorms when found in violation of those curfews.
“Another great example is a contract that a company in Louisiana has to provide drug dogs to sweep ship containers and vessels and provide DOT drug testing for ship personnel, and then to provide security protection services for the vessel and cargo while in port,” McCann added. An all around service provider is what today's client is seeking.
There are also twenty six states that authorize security officers with special police authority, and in those states, security officers often issue tickets, make arrests and serve summones. A number of small towns have also contracted security agencies to patrol their town, respond to non-emergency calls for service, and provide emergency medical services.
Many companies now are looking to outsource a number of their services, and to do it under an "umbrella" contract with one provider.
By: Jim Doyle, owner of Madison Security Group