How To Become A Security Guard In The UK

Are you interested in becoming a security guard in the UK? Now that the security industry is vastly growing, to get a security job you must meet some eligibility apart from having physical strength and fitness, ability to make decisions quickly, strong observation powers and patience. As a qualified security guard, you could work for all types of organizations and your duties could vary depending on the working industry.

Skills required

Throughout the security officers’ career path, some find themselves performing various roles with firms in diverse sectors. For instance, at different times, someone might work in a hospital, a nightclub, an airport or protecting a VIP (bodyguard). Because working as a security guard calls for varied nature of roles, one must not only be fast-learner but also able to quickly adapt to radically different circumstances. For this reason, the skills needed for any security role are:

– Initiative and able to make fast decisions

– Confidence and have the ability when it comes to dealing with confrontational individuals

– Basic IT skills

– Polite, patience and trustworthy person

– Teamworking and adhering to instructions

– Capable of using technical equipment like baggage scanners and CCTV

– Good understanding of individuals and the ability to associate with folks from all walks of life

Additionally, a driving license, skills for giving first aid, fire training, and self-defense training to assist set you apart from the crowd.

SIA licensing

In the United Kingdom, the Security Industry Authority (SIA) is responsible for controlling the private security industry. It has two major roles; managing the Approved Contractor Scheme (measures the private security suppliers against individually or independently assessed criteria) and licensing people undertaking designated functions within the private security industry.

SIA license proves that someone is “fit and proper” and has the ability to fulfill a security duty – the license is awarded within twenty-five working days after applying. To get an SIA license, someone must be 18 years old or above and passed identity and criminal record checks.

Still, having a criminal record doesn’t automatically disqualify you from a security job. SIA decides whether a certain offence should or should not forbid someone from joining the industry. Someone can use the free criminal record indicator of SIA to figure out whether he will pass criminality criteria or not.

Career path and progression

After landing the first role someone can begin working towards other security requirements like City and Guilds Certificate for Security Officers or Security Practitioners, NVQ in Offering Security Services or Quality Skills for Security training course. These enable you to advance to more supervisory and senior roles like chief security officer and security team leader.

After gaining enough experience under your belt, you might be able to apply for a police officer job in logistics and/or in fraud prevention. On the other hand, you might consider setting up your own security business and specialize in offering professional security services.


Becoming a security guard is a rewarding career path in the UK with plenty of opportunities for not only advancing but also interacting with the public. If you want to become one, do it now – don’t wait any longer.

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