What is a security officer?

A security officer is someone who patrols and inspects property against fire, theft, vandalism, terrorism, and illegal activity. They investigate and report irregularities and guard against unlawful behavior.

How to become a security officer?

You can take a training course approved by the Security Industry Authority (SIA). Many of these courses are run by private training companies.

You may also take a Level 2 Certificate in Principles of Providing Security Services.

When you have completed the right course for the type of security work you want to do, you can apply for a front-line SIA licence. You must have this before you can work legally in the private security industry in any job that is on the front-line.

Security officer duties

Security officer duties are diverse and depend on the employer and specialty, but some responsibilities are common to most:

  • Protect and enforce laws on an employer’s property
  • Monitor alarms and closed-circuit TV cameras
  • Control access for employees, visitors, and outside contractors
  • Provide assistance to people in need
  • Submit reports of daily surveillance activity
  • Submit reports of every suspicious action

Security officer skills

To be an effective security officer, you’ll need certain skills and competencies. The following are often cited in job vacancies:

  • Outstanding surveillance and observation skills
  • Critical thinker and problem-solving skills
  • Team player
  • Good time-management skills
  • Great interpersonal and communication skills
  • Friendly personality
  • Attention to detail
  • Safety
  • Dependability

How to find a security officer job

These jobs are advertised online, in local newspapers and at your local jobcentre. To find all the security officer jobs near you, you need to:

  • Search for security officer jobs on popular job websites such as; Indeed, Total Jobs and CV Library
  • Use the DWP’s Find A Job Service
  • Check local newspapers and local Facebook groups, especially groups dedicated to local jobs

Security Officer Job Titles

When you search for security officer jobs online, be aware that the jobs might be advertised using a different job title. Popular job titles for security officer jobs include;

  • Security guard
  • Security inspector
  • Protective agent

What does a security officer do?

The job of a security officer varies depending on the job role and the company you’re working for. Check the duties and responsibilities of security officer job advertisements to find jobs that best suit your skills and experience. 

The day-to-day tasks of a security officer include;

  • Patrol premises and secure doors, windows and other entrances
  • Monitor CCTV cameras
  • Respond to alarms
  • Check staff and visitors in and out of buildings
  • Guard cash or other valuables in a security vehicle
  • Operate scanning equipment and devices, like at airports
  • Search luggage
  • Guard the boundaries of important facilities, like airports or power stations