The SIA itself does not run training courses for security professionals. It is the accrediting body for the training courses and the licensing body for trained Private Security professionals. The training itself is provided by independent training bodies with SIA accreditation. Before attending a training course it is worth checking the SIA website to ensure that your chosen training provider is listed as an accredited trainer.
Only qualifications from an approved SIA Training Provider will equip you with the accreditation needed to work in the Private Security Industry, so it is imperative that you ensure your training provider is accredited by the SIA. Whatever the field in which you wish to gain competency, it is worth considering that SIA training in any field qualifies you as a Key Holder, which is a requirement in an increasing number of jobs.
The requirement for prospective security professionals to gain SIA training is a result of the Private Security Industry Act (2001) which was designed to deal with the worrying prevalence of disreputable individuals working in the security industry. Ensuring that only individuals with SIA training can legally work as security professionals has resulted in a regulated security industry where anyone in a security post can be assumed to be aware of their duties and responsibilities under the law.
Getting on an SIA training course is doubly important as, at the end of the course, there are often immediate job openings through a network of recruitment agencies affiliated to the trainer. Getting yourself licensed can therefore bear immediate results, and in today’s troubled environment it is simply imperative that you do everything you can to maximise your employment prospects.
The importance of getting the correct training is impossible to overstate. Firstly, it is illegal to work in the Industry without this training. Working without the necessary accreditation could see you getting hit with a large fine, being blacklisted for any future positions in the Industry, and may even lead to a custodial sentence, so the stakes are extremely high. Secondly, the contacts that you make from going on an SIA training course could be invaluable in finding a position in the Industry and alerting you to other opportunities. The Integrated Licensing system means that if you qualify as a Door Supervisor, you also qualify in a number of other capacities which will make you employable in a way that few other training schemes will.
Having found your SIA training course it is also a good idea to familiarise yourself with the approved syllabus for training. Knowing what you will be covering during the training process gives you a head start in getting your qualification. A familiarity with the units and modules that comprise your course will aid preparation, and the syllabus for each SIA training course can be fund online. This is not to say that by searching online you can find all the answers and take a short-cut to the finish line. It is more important to know why the answer is what it is than to simply know the answer. This is because the questions on the exam change regularly and are designed to test your understanding of the security industry, the laws affecting it and the contribution that will be expected from you as a Private Security worker.
The reason why it is a good idea to inform yourself online before you take the course is because the course itself covers a wide range of aspects, including some that you may not have considered relevant to working as a security officer. Naturally we would all expect a Door Supervisor’s course to cover the finer points of reasonable force, but the fact that it also entails a module on Licensing Law shows that there is a lot of ground to be covered. Getting a qualification at the end of an SIA training process will show that you have understood a breadth of information on a range of subjects and are ideally equipped to work in an industry that can throw any number of unexpected situations at you.
We can stress, then, that SIA training is not only essential from a legal standpoint but also indispensable from a point of view of preparation and legal protection. If you have designs on working in the security industry and expect it to be simple and straightforward, the training process will very quickly dispense with this notion. SIA training will be challenging, varied and complex, which is a perfect description of security work itself. For you, the course will guarantee perfect preparation. For the employer who hires you, it guarantees a well rounded and educated employee. The old cliché of the surly, burly and excessively strong-armed security service professional is now more of an inaccurate stereotype than ever before.