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Manned guarding in 2016

As our lives become more and more integrated with technology, the security industry is no different. Manned guarding has become a hot topic of late because of the recent terror attacks and cuts to police spending. James Kelly, pictured, Chief Executive of the trade body the British Security Industry Association (BSIA), explores how manned guarding is still one of the most important aspects of security.

While security technology can put businesses at an advantage when countering theft, vandalism and arson, in some settings, a physical security presence still comes as a must. Employing staff to keep premises secure has long been a favourite security solution. Adaptable, able to react quickly and think on their feet, the benefits of providing a human element to your security solution should not be underestimated.

Security patrols by foot or by vehicle are fundamental when responding to intruder detection and also give a highly visible security presence. The feeling of security for any on site visitors and staff is also enhanced by the presence of security officers manning access points and by security guards carrying out random patrols both in buildings and perimeter areas of the facility. Security patrols are often responsible for managing technological aspects of a site’s security solutions, such as CCTV or access control. They can be an expensive form of security, but the ability to react quickly to developing situations as well as their obvious deterrent to potential intruders mean they are well worth the cost, should there be deemed enough of a benefit to having them.

Fully trained operatives can form a highly effective layer of security for your facility. However, the prospect of integrating both electronic security systems and manned security is certainly something you should consider. Using all the benefits of the electronic systems and advances in technology, and combining them with highly trained security staff able to make informed decisions, and decide what course of action is necessary in the case of an emergency, is an entirely comprehensive way of providing security.

CCTV cameras can be monitored and directed via a control centre, whilst manned patrols can be sent to any incident in real time, and adapt to any changes in the situation utilising this technology. Access control can be instantly utilised to lock down areas strategically in accordance with security protocols, and vehicular access can be restricted or granted through interaction with drivers, should it be necessary. Interaction with the public and on site visitors or workers should not be underestimated either, with the human element vital in providing reassurance that they are in a secure location.

All aspects of a security officer’s role require sensitivity and understanding of technology, as well as excellent communication with management and administrative staff. For this reason, choosing a reputable supplier with solid industry experience is essential for the success of a security strategy.

A professional security company can offer far more than just uniformed officers, providing consultancy and security design as well. By sharing best practice across its portfolio, the supplier can provide help and advice on the application of security technology as well as a physical security presence. This can include making use of technological developments such as fingerprints readers and eye scanners as well as traditional CCTV and perimeter alarms.

BSIA members operating in the security guarding sector employ fully vetted and qualified personnel and adhere to strict quality standards. Details of these can be found on the BSIA’s website,


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