Enter your search term

Search by title or post keyword

How to Become a Security Guard and Protect with Confidence

Our website is supported by our users. This post may contain affiliate links - which means we may receive compensation from purchases made through links on this site. To learn more, read about our Affiliate Disclosure and Editorial Process.

Are you looking for a fulfilling career or a new gig where you can make a difference in people’s lives while ensuring their safety?

If so, learning how to become a security guard might be the perfect path for you.

Whether it’s protecting businesses, public spaces, or people, security guards play a crucial role in maintaining order. Here’s everything you need to know.

An Overview of the Security Guard Career: A Primer

Security guards are vital in ensuring safety and security in various settings. Their responsibilities extend beyond surveillance, even though the main frontline involves keeping a secure environment.

Security guards work by monitoring premises, conducting regular patrols, and promptly addressing any security incidents that may arise. They’re charged with controlling access points, verifying identities, and ensuring that only authorized people are granted entry.

As a security guard, you’ll be trained to handle emergencies calmly and react accordingly under pressure.

Security guards are the first point of contact for visitors and employees, so you’ll also be assisting while ensuring everyone’s safety.

How Much Do Security Guards Make?

The salary for security guards varies depending on factors like experience, location, and industry.

On average, security guards earn a median hourly wage ranging from $12 to $20, but various circumstances can affect pay.

Those with more years of experience may have higher wages due to their expertise and knowledge.

Security guards in high-demand areas or industries may also have better earning potential. Those in metropolitan areas often earn higher wages to pay for higher living costs.

What You’ll Need to Become a Security Guard & Associated Costs

Those wondering how to become a security guard must comply with essential requirements to make their transition into this career seamless. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Good Physical Fitness: Security guards work in various environments, so physical strength and stamina are a must to handle challenging situations.
  • High School Diploma: While specific educational requirements depend on employers, a high school diploma is generally a minimum requirement for becoming a security guard.
  • Good Legal Standing: Security guards are trusted with maintaining safety and security, so they must undergo a thorough background check and answer for any potential criminal activity history.
  • Proper Training: Security guards must finish specialized security training to get the necessary skills and knowledge for the job. Specific positions like armed security guards require more specialized training that grants them the right to carry firearms.

How Much Does it Cost to Become a Security Guard?

The costs of becoming a security guard vary, but the overall price of training programs, licensing fees, and background checks can go from $100 to $1000.

Research the requirements specific to your location and consult reputable training institutions so they can best advise you on the costs of being a security guard in your area.

Is It Hard to Become a Security Guard?

Becoming a security guard requires dedication and commitment, but pursuing this career isn’t hard. The level of difficulty varies on individual circumstances and personal traits, but as long as you’re responsible, you have a shot.

Security guards need to be well-trained, prepared physically and mentally, and ready to undergo curious learning and adaptability.

The security industry is always evolving, so you must be ready to face some challenges. But, with proper preparation and commitment, you can overcome these hurdles easily.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Security Guard?

The duration for becoming a security guard varies on the following factors:

  • Training Program: The training program’s duration can range from a few days to several weeks, depending on the curriculum. Basic training programs typically cover topics like legal regulations, emergency response, and security protocols. Specialized or additional training may require more time.
  • Licensing Process: Getting a security guard license involves submitting an application, undergoing a background check, and completing specific requirements mandated by the licensing authority. This can take a few weeks or even a couple of months.
  • Personal Readiness: The time it takes to join security officers depends on their commitment. Some may be able to complete training and licensing more quickly if they have previous experience or have the necessary qualifications.

How To Become a Security Guard in 8 Simple Steps

Whether you’re looking for independent work or want to make a career change, this step-by-step guide will give you valuable insight to embark on your journey as a safety guard.

1. Research the Security Industry

Before delving into a security guard job, you must gain a comprehensive understanding of the industry.

Explore the types of security roles available, like residential or commercial, and identify the specific skills and training needed for each.

This research will help you make informed decisions and discover the best security guard jobs for your profile.

2. Obtain the Required Education & Certifications

To enhance your prospects and stand out in the job market, you must also undergo additional education and certifications.

Look into local regulations, as some states or jurisdictions may have specific educational requirements for security services. However, bear in mind that almost all require a high-school diploma.

While a high-school diploma is necessary, some industries may require a specific bachelor’s degree, like a criminal justice background.

Another thing you’ll need to work on is report writing, as this will come in handy in the security guard career. Employers value guards who can accurately document incidents, observations, and daily activities, so take the time to get acquainted with writing.

3. Maintain Good Physical Fitness

Staying fit ensures you have the power, endurance, and agility to handle the job demands.

As a security guard, you may be required to patrol large areas, respond to emergencies swiftly, and engage in physical interventions when needed.

Cardiovascular activities, strength training, and flexibility workouts can help you stay in good shape

4. Receive State-Approved Training

Completing a state-approved training program is crucial for you to become a security guard. Government agencies and more serious institutions have required training programs that you need to complete to be considered for a security guard job.

The training provides a comprehensive approach to surveillance techniques, crowd management, conflict resolution, and communication skills. Extensive training will ensure you meet the regulatory requirements to become a security guard.

5. Pass a Background Check

As a security guard, employers and clients rely on you to maintain safety and trust. That’s why you’ll need to pass a background check as soon as you get into the business.

To pass a background check, you must be prepared to have a comprehensive review of your criminal activity history, employment records, labor statistics, and personal references.

6. Gain Relevant Experience

While a high-school diploma lays the foundation, gaining on-the-job training is equally important to become a security guard.

Seek opportunities to gain relevant experience in the security guard field, whether through internships, training, volunteering, or entry-level security roles.

To get on-the-job training, consider joining security organizations or associations that provide access to mentorship programs.

Hands-on experience will sharpen your skills and demonstrate your dedication to the security industry

7. Network Within the Security Industry

Building a solid professional network is a strategy that professional security guards do.

Attend industry conferences, training events, seminars, and job fairs to connect with security professionals, potential employers, and industry experts.

Engage in conversation, ask for advice, and learn from security guards who are experienced in the field. You can also subscribe to security guard magazines and online communities to stay updated on industry trends and job opportunities.

8. Prepare for the Application Process

As you progress on how to become a security guard, you will reach the most significant step: the application process.

Remember that the field of public safety offers a wide range of opportunities, so consider the specific industries that interest you. Choose between financial institutions, retail stores, fire departments, college campuses, or office buildings.

When you’re ready to apply, customize your resume and cover letter to highlight your relevant qualifications. Emphasize your security license, background check, and additional education you may have.

Reasons to Consider Becoming a Security Guard

There are many reasons why you may want to consider becoming a security guard, including:

  • Entry-level Opportunities: Security guard job requirements often include minimal education and experience, making it an accessible career option for people looking to enter the workforce or switch careers.
  • Career Advancement: Security guards can get promoted to security supervisors or managers. They can even join related fields like loss prevention or private investigation – as long as they have the right credentials.
  • Job Stability: Security guard jobs are always in high demand, giving job stability and long-term employment prospects for those in the field.
  • Flexible Work Hours: Security guards often have the advantage of a flexible work schedule, choosing to work day, evening, night, or weekend shifts.
  • Potential for Additional Benefits: Some security guards’ positions offer additional benefits like healthcare coverage, retirement plans, paid time off, and bonuses, depending on the specific job role.

Frequently Asked Questions

Besides asking how to become a security guard, people training for the field have also asked:

What Security Guard Training Do I Need?

You’ll typically need to complete state-mandated security guard training programs that cover essential topics like emergency procedures, legal and ethical responsibilities, and basic protection techniques.

How Can I Find Security Guard Jobs?

You can find security guard job opportunities through various channels, including online job boards, security companies, local law enforcement agencies, and networking within the industry.

Similar Gigs to Check Out

While security officers are essential to our workforce, this industry may not be for everyone. Here are some other how-to gigs you can check out:

  • Become a Carpenter: If you enjoy working with your hands and have a knack for craftsmanship, discover career opportunities as a carpenter.
  • Become a Pilates Instructor: Stay fit and help others improve their posture, strength, and overall health by becoming a Pilates instructor.
  • Work as a Welder: For those skilled in working with metal, check out the range of prospects that come with welding.

Wrapping Up

Becoming a security guard is a rewarding initiative that allows you to contribute to the safety and security of people.

With dedication, perseverance, and a commitment to upholding safety, you can excel in the industry.

By following the necessary steps we’ve laid out, you’ll discover how to become a security guard and protect with the strive and confidence your job needs.

Remember, security guards’ work requires constant advancement, so check out all the resources available so you can always stay ahead.

Leave a Comment

FRH Article Default
  • Employment

How to Become a Florist [The Ultimate Guide]

May 31, 2023
7 min read
vector graphic showing an illustration of hands holding a phone with a nanny carrying a baby graphics showing how to become a nanny
  • Employment

How to Become a Nanny: A Step-By-Step Guide for (2023)

May 23, 2023
7 min read

Explore More within Gigworker

Other App-Based Gigs
Get to work faster with jobs in the gig worker industry.
post explore

Browse Our Gig Headquarters

The gig economy is booming, and thanks to COVID-19, more people than ever are getting involved. But what is this new sharing economy and how does it work?

Important Gig Economy #Fundamentals to Understand

gigworker logo icon
What is the Gig Economy?

Side Hustle Ideas

Get inspired with our list of 750+ side hustles. Sort by category, rating, and other custom taxonomies.

Browse Side Hustles

Gig Companies

Browse our complete list of gig economy companies, and the gigs they’re hiring for.

Browse Gig Companies

Helpful Content

Read thousands of informative posts, written specifically to help you excel in your favorite gigs.

VIP Membership

Unlock access to VIP-only benefits like content, downloadable, and resources – all ad-free.