Training & qualifications – Approach
The SIA is defining standards of competence for licensing which will be consistently applied and include an industry wide approach across sectors and jobs. The competency criteria for licensing will be based on a systematic analysis of skills, needs and trends, and on the identification of the knowledge required to perform the job to the required standard. The processes involved in the development of the standards of competency are:
- Looking at existing standards in the security industry and identifying any omissions
- Identifying the skills and knowledge required for specific jobs
- Looking at existing training and qualifications and identifying best practice
- Producing specifications for training and qualifications for each security industry sector
- Talking with each industry sector to develop training modules and new qualifications
From here, the SIA has specified new qualifications that build on those that currently exist and include best practice in training. Where gaps in training existed the SIA consulted with industry stakeholders to ensure that the training and qualifications were improved to cover the standards set.
In developing the new qualifications the SIA will take into account the changing roles of those already employed in the industry and the requirements for new skills and knowledge. Many of the qualifications will now include assessment in conflict management and communication, subjects identified as basic skills needed by the industry. The qualifications will also be designed to allow candidates to progress to higher level awards if they so choose.
The SIA will not be developing training courses or qualifications. Instead, in conjunction with the qualification regulation authorities, it will endorse awarding bodies to deliver the new qualifications.
The SIA specification requires door supervisors to know how to minimise conflict in aggressive situations. This may include some physical contact with customers in certain situations. The specification does not require door supervisors to acquire specific knowledge of physical intervention techniques, such training usually requires 2 days and includes an annual refresher.
As a regulatory authority, the SIA requires that door supervisors have the relevant level of competence to operate in a professional manner and increases public trust and confidence in those offering security services. The standards specified do not remove the right of door supervisors to defend themselves when faced with a threatening situation. It also does not remove the duty of the employer to identify and provide additional training for door supervisors should they deem it necessary.
The SIA will recognise certain, relevant existing qualifications or parts of a qualification, including those from overseas. Existing qualifications will be looked at to see if they meet the new requirements allowing the holder exemption from the new training requirements. The SIA will encourage recognition of qualification achievements where possible but this can only be on the basis of careful evaluations of such awards on a case-by-case approach.
Training organisations will charge for training courses and exams and these charges may vary between different training providers. Training is expected to cost between £250 – £350. The SIA has agreed funding support with the Learning Skills Council to reduce the costs to individual trainees. The LSC funding support will be £102 per individual which will go to the training provider to off set the training fees bringing the cost for door supervisors for parts 1 & 2 of the SIA qualification to around £150 – £250.
The SIA and LSC believe the funding arrangements will provide the basis for national funding support for the private security industry.