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Security Guard Skills To Look For When Hiring

Although hiring security guards quickly would be the ideal scenario, its essential to be thorough in the screening process and to hire security guards with the right skills.

Like any hiring process, the objective from the companies’ side is to hire the candidate who is best suited for the position based off their experience, skills and attitude. One of the most difficult tasks for any security guard company manager or owner is finding qualified security guards.  Although finding any security guard may not be a difficult task, finding ones who don’t upset customers and continue to stay at you company long-term is a different situation altogether.

When employers are hiring security guards to protect their business, the most important qualification that they look for is certification. It is essential that the people that they entrust their safety to, have completed proper security guard training. However, there are many other qualifications and skills that employers of security guards look for too.

Hiring the Right Guards

Hiring security guards quickly would be the ideal scenario. However, this would in turn end up negatively affecting your company in the long-run. Hiring and placing security guards that are unqualified is a detriment to your company’s reputation and its financial livelihood.  Take your time and develop a hiring program that will get you the high-caliber security guards that you need with the correct skill-set. Let’s identify the skills you should look out for when hiring security guard officers.

Security Guard skills to look for when hiring


One of the main attributes to look out for when hiring a security guard, is identifying whether they know how to communicate clearly and effectively. They must be efficient in both verbal written communication. Their work might require that they use a two-way radio to communicate with other guards in a professional manner. Alternatively, it might also be required that they answer phone calls during , and at the end of their shift.

Communication skills also help them when they are required to write a report concerning an accident that happened during a shift. It is also needed to interview witnesses or victims, prepare case reports, or testify in court.

Ask candidates questions regarding past incidences when they had to utilize these skills to assure they are capable of carrying out these tasks.

Leader and Team Player

Security guards tend to work alone. But, they still need leadership skills. In some cases, security guards work in a group to ensure the perimeter of a business is completely secure.

When these rare instances occur, each guard needs to know the difference between when it’s time to assert themselves and take control, and when it’s time to stand down and take orders. If they know this difference, then operations will be able to move a lot smoother. The situation can be quickly resolved, and the facility can go back to being safe and secure. If they don’t have these leadership and team player skills, then they could potentially put lives in jeopardy.


A security guard is responsible for securing the access to buildings and protecting businesses from crime, so they have to be honest and trustworthy. A client needs to be able to look at your employee and believe that they trust them with the management of their business

When you have an untrustworthy security guard, it hard to know what they could be doing to your establishment, which is why most security companies run a thorough background check before hiring any guard candidate. A quality candidate will present himself or herself well. Judging their sense of character during the hiring process will give you an idea on whether this person is genuinely trustworthy or not.


A key security guard skill to look out for is alertness. A good security guard is always alert and aware of their surroundings. If you lack the ability to stay focused, you might ignore something that could jeopardize the lives of the people you are safeguarding. You must be able to bear in mind the things you see, and you should also provide written reports.

When hiring, ask questions regarding a time they had to write a report about an incident that happened on a site and have they handled it.

Strength and Fitness

Ideal candidates need to be in a healthy weight range and exercise regularly. An unfit guard might not be able to protect people as well as a fit one and being in good shape will lead to mental alertness.

On top of being physically fit, but they need to look reputable, too. They should have a clean, neat uniform that’s always tucked in. If he or she looks well put together than that will make them, and your company, look good in the eyes of your client and the public they serve.

Attention to Detail

Last but not least, the job of a security guard requires showing attention to detail. They must be able to spot small issues that may become a threat to the people or place that they are protecting. When a vehicle is parked wrongly on a busy street or an individual is acting in a manner that is out of the ordinary and erratic, the security guard needs to be able to identify these slight details to anticipate dangerous occurrences.

Make sure that the candidates you are screening have most of, if not all, these skills so you can assure that you are hiring the most appropriate guards for your shifts!

Written by Conor Bourke

Written by Conor Bourke

Conor is a Digital Marketing Coordinator at Celayix that focuses on PPC, social media and website management.

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