SECURITY MANAGERS AS THE CAPABLE GUARDIANS
Security management had nowadays become very crucial in most workplaces throughout the world. This is mainly because a variety of insecurity incidences had previously occurred due to the weak security measures that had already been put in place to ensure safety within such organisations which may include corporate, residential places, leisure places as well as shopping centres (Challinger, 2006; Bachman, 1994; Loader and Walker, 2007).
Therefore, this calls for a collaborative approach towards fighting against violent actions that are mostly committed by people with a motive of either stealing or harming the people occupying such buildings. However, in recent times the managers, supervisors and employees of organisations have frequently become victims of assaults as well as other acts of violence that are increasingly occurring at the places of work thereby entailing substantial risk of emotional or physical harm. Moreover, some of such assaults often lead to fatal injury, even though most of them results to injuries that are nonfatal injury, or been threatened to be injured, a situation which may result to medical treatment, missed work as well as decreased productivity (Collins and Cox, 1987; Button, 2001).
However, there is no single explanation that can actually be given for the increasing workplace violence. But some episodes of violence in workplace such as robberies can be largely related to the substance abuse as well as the societal problems of crime (Collins and Cox, 1987). Therefore, the main challenge that arises is then what should be done in order to ensure that these incidences of workplace insecurities are addressed a situation which can only be achieved through the embracing of the available preventive measures that must be done on the basis of a thorough understanding of the associated risk factors (Cunningham, Strauchs and Van Meter, 1990; Michael, 2002). Additionally, the private security management should be ready to commit themselves towards ensuring the condition is abated through the involvement of its security managers, supervisors and guards.
Security management also includes those security managers employed by non security firms such as hospitals, private ordinary companies, and local authorities. They also have their functions such as managing and advising security (George and Button, 2000).
In addition, the role of the private security companies have in the recent past tremendously grown due to the crucial role they are actually playing in the private policing. However, there has been an increased debate on the issues of governance and the regulation of the private security (Long, 2003). This resulted into a rapid growth of this company, especially the public areas patrols; exposing of criminal involvements; and reduction of the night-time workplace break-ins. However, in the United Kingdom the Private Security Industry Act of 2001 is usually crucial in making sure that it controls the operations of this industry which is currently expanding at an alarming rate (Heyde, 2003; Jones and Newburn, 1998).
Furthermore, the managers of these security industries serve a very critical role in ensuring that high standards of security are adhered to. This is mainly because these security managers who are usually employed for the purpose of managing the security personnel in their respective security firms as well as the security specialists who are actually employed by the non-security bodies are mandated the responsibility of managing and overseeing security staff in charge of their organisations protection have been greatly excluded from the licensing as well as many other qualifications that they are required to possess in order to be able to effectively execute their duties (Toscano and Weber, 1995). This has therefore been the major gap as well as impediment that has been posing challenges towards the overall performance as well as standards of the entire security industry and thus contributing towards the creation of a private security industry that is truly accountable to their duties and responsibilities while at the same time adhering to very high standards of professionalism (Button, 2001).
Bottom up Training
It is undoubtedly evident that most of the security organisations usually employ security managers who are actually not fully competent in order to be in a position of carrying out their duties effectively. Therefore, most of the managers or supervisors of the security personnel sometimes tends to be less competent when it comes to the issues of managing physical attacks (Sarre and Prenzler, 2009). Hence, at time you find out that the security staffs that are directly under their leadership and with more years of experience on the job tend to be more competent. This is due to the fact that the Irish training programme that is actually prescribed for the security personnel training only covers the course of the static guards as well as door security personnel which takes place within a very short period of time usually less than a week (Heyde, 2003; Jones and Newburn, 1998). However, there is also no training that is specifically required for both the management and the supervisory staff of the security personnel. This results to the doubting of their capabilities in being able to effectively execute the duties when it comes to managing issues of physical attack (Collins and Cox, 1987).
However, the Private Security Personnel training course aims provide the trainees with necessary but basic skills enabling them to work in the security industry. Hence, due to the short duration that is actually taken during this course it is only necessary for people who opts to practice as mere guards either at the capacity of static guards or door security personnel but does not give someone enough knowledge and skills to be able to successfully execute the responsibilities of a security manager (Button, 2001; Zedner, 2006). Therefore, in the United Kingdom the Private Security Personnel training is only capable of imparting skills and knowledge of the security personnel such as competently carrying out tasks that arise in the door security as well as the security guarding sector. Therefore, these tasks mostly include provision of the security guarding, door security services, alarm systems and CCTV monitoring, hazard identification, response to emergencies, and use of defensive and detention techniques when needed.
However, there is very little attention on the security managers since there is no licensing required. Hence, the security managers can be broadly classified into three main categories whose qualifications are undoubtedly questionable. For instance, there are the security managers employed by the security firms whereby the big companies such as the G4S tends to employ a reasonable number of security manager on annual basis responsible of the management of its security officers substantial force (Collins and Cox, 1987; Zedner, 2006). The ones operating in areas that are regulated require to get licensed meaning that that those operating in the unregulated areas do not require any licensing. However, if these managers perform front-line duties they are therefore required to undergo the training for the category of license they manage whereas they no, then they may obtain a non-frontline license. However, these managers are usually no entitled to any requirement for additional training under the regime of licensing either as non-frontline or frontline holders. This means that security personnel who are under them may then be in possession of more knowledge and skills compared to them which then results to their services been questionable (Button, 2001; Sarre and Prenzler, 2009).
The other category of security managers is the managers who are employed by the non-security organisations such as shopping centres, ordinary companies, hospitals, local authorities and so on to execute the duties of managing and advising them on security issues. These managers take a wider range of functions meaning that they are supposed to greatly embark on advising their employer in addition to managing the security operations (Cunningham, Strauchs and Van Meter, 1990; Michael, 2002). Hence, they are often referred to as security advisors or security managers. These managers the only ones who are capable of effectively carrying out the duties of a security managers thereby being reliable guardians. This due to the fact that they have usually received formal training hence capable of amicably carrying out the duties of a security specialist (Sarre and Prenzler, 2009; Stout, Jenkins and Pizatella, 1996).
Furthermore, most of the small and medium sized enterprises usually delegates the responsibility of security to ether their general managers, personnel manager or facilities manager. They may require licensing whenever required a process which is mostly marred with numerous loopholes. However, these manager often tend to have no background training on security issues but under their capacity they ends up managing security personnel who are more competent than them thereby raising the issues of their ability to effectively manage a department they do not have succinct background information (Sarre and Prenzler, 2009; Zedner, 2006).
Ex military and law enforcement security managers
Most of the security managers in the United Kingdom are actually ex-military and law enforcers as it is the case with most other countries throughout the world. However, it is always assumed that these group of security managers tends to be competent mostly considering their previous backgrounds on security systems as well as their experience in their respective forces, however, this mostly tends outs not to be the case mainly because a reasonable number of them do not possess any credible qualifications of the operations of the security systems (Button, 2001).
However, the research that was carried out by Hearnden (1993) found that there was 61 and 76 per cent of the ex-police and ex-military security personnel that were recruited respectively. This indicates that the security managers in the entire of United Kingdom are predominantly from the military and the police. Moreover, considering that to these two groups the security management is actually their second career then the average age tends to be high compared to other professions while at the same time there is an entrenched negative orientations regarding to both education and training on the security management issues (Heyde, 2003; Jones and Newburn, 1998).
Additionally, the study that was carried out by Hearnden (1993) indicates that 62 per cent of the security managers did not possess any vocational qualifications a possession that they rated as fourth least significant attribute towards good security management; 59 per cent were actually working in organisations that never had any formal training needs analysis; 38 per cent of the security managers had not attended even a single outside seminar or course within a period of two previous years; and 40 per cent were actually unwilling or unable to identify a particular requirement for personal training. However, this trend has continued unabated despite the recent expansion in the higher education concerning the issues of security management (O’Carroll and Mercy, 1989). This is greatly attributable to the fact that most of these ex-police and ex-military takes the security management job as a second career aimed at supplementing their pensions and they mostly end up appointing their successors or other subordinates from the same backgrounds.
In addition, despite the benefits that are accrued because of the experience, skills and networks brought by these ex-police and ex-service personnel to the security industry, there are also some detrimental effects caused by the second career mentality (Sarre and Prenzler, 2009; Stout, Jenkins and Pizatella, 1996). This may also end up influencing the orientation of these managers since they mostly rely on the experience gained in their previous job instead of qualifications to be able to effectively perform the duties. This therefore has greatly contributed to the current status of the security management in the entire of the United Kingdom (Button, 2001). However, if the security management will end up being juxtaposed against the rest of other managerial specialism then the security managers will be prepared towards investing their time in order to secure appropriate development through education and training so as to improve their careers and be able to effectively execute the duties of a security manager (Wakefield, 2003; Collins and Cox, 1987).
Perhaps there is also the need to increase and expand the number of learning routes that are currently limited that leads to the security management jobs. This is mainly because despite the experience gained by most of these ex-service and police security personnel qualifications are also very crucial in ensuring that they capable of effectively executing their work thereby becoming capable security guardians (Lynch, 1987). Thus, there should at least the minimum qualifications which may include a diploma in security management which could be used as the entry level qualification for the security managers.
Assessing the risk of physical attack
The aspect of the workplace violence risk assessment in the attempts of combating physical attack in the workplace require someone who possess the managerial skills and knowledge that will be crucial in enabling them to effectively undertake a risk assessment thereby facilitating the implementation of policies that will address the issues risks identified (Zedner, 2006). Therefore, the security manager needs to be competent by taking a formal security management training which includes covering the risk assessment as well as other crucial areas such as the causes of workplace violence, its causes and preventative measures thereby making them effective and capable guardians (Button, 2001; Collins and Cox, 1987).
In addition, the ability for the managers to be able to amicably carry out an effective physical attack risk assessment, then they are required to be able to take a collaborative approach to the overall security systems within the organisations in which they manage the security personnel (O’Carroll and Mercy, 1989). Hence, irrespective of the size of the organisation the ability of the security manager to be capable of explicitly analysing the security system is of critical significance since it facilitates the possible loopholes of the security system that are likely to threaten the security systems. Therefore, additional training is required to most of the security managers in order to ensure that they are in a position to adequately undertake a risk assessment of their organisations.
Security management is undoubtedly among the most significant departments in any organisation that requires to be headed by effective and competent security managers who are capable guardians. This is due to the fact that negligence in their work may lead to outright detrimental effects that are capable of negatively affecting their respective organisations through loss of property as well as customers when proper security measures are not adhered to effectively. However, the training offered to most of the security personnel is not adequate to make someone a capable guardian of the security system. This is mainly because it only offers a basic introduction to security systems but no security management skills are obtained. Therefore, further training is required for one to advance their security management skills. In addition, majority of the security managers in the United Kingdom tends to be ex-military and ex-police which makes them to largely rely on their experience instead of qualifications because they have actually not gone through a formal security management training. Moreover, an effective security managers needs to have adequate skills crucial to enable the amicably carry risk assessment within their organisations.
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