In many cases, effective security guard training can be the difference between life and death. Let’s break down the many types of security guard training, what it should include and how you should implement it into your business.

Table of contents
  1. What Are the Basics of Security Guard Training?
  2. What Kind Of Security Guard Training Is Available?
  3. What Every Security Guard Training Program Must Include
  4. Factors Shaping Security Guard Training Development
  5. Use The Latest Technology to Implement Your Security Guard Training Program
  6. Addressing Common Training Program Concerns
  7. The Bottom Line On Security Guard Programs

It’s a fact—many security guards don’t receive adequate training. As a result, they need to figure out important safety measures the hard way, often making mistakes that could be harmful, lethal, and even legally damaging to your company.

Expecting your guards to carry out certain safety protocols without any further guidance or information is downright negligent and unprofessional. Security guards need to be taught the ins and outs of every task they are expected to perform to ensure they are doing the best job they can and taking your company to new heights.

While security guard training can mean lots of work and preparation, the end results can often be the difference between your business flourishing or going under.

Let’s dig into the basics of security guard training, the many types that might be relevant to your business, and the tools you should use to put your training program into practice.

What Are the Basics of Security Guard Training?

Until recently, security officer positions did not require much training or qualifications. Many security jobs only require a GED and a clear criminal record—some not even that. 

And yet, this job requires many skills and responsibilities. Therefore, it also mandates a great deal of experience and training.

If you want your security guard company’s employees to be ready for modern challenges, perform at a high level, deliver excellent customer satisfaction, and also pass government regulations, then there are no two ways about it: you need a stellar security guard training program.

Some of the main security guard training topics include:

  • Guarding and monitoring premises
  • Operating surveillance equipment
  • Preventing theft
  • Communicating quickly with emergency services
  • Escorting individuals around a site or off the premises
  • Assisting in the secure transportation of money or highly-priced goods
  • Making quick decisions and prioritizing duties

But it’s also essential to clearly understand the specific types of security guard training that your business may require.

What Kind Of Security Guard Training Is Available?

While there are many different types of training for security guards with their own specific set of courses, there are usually three key types that these programs fall under.

Basic Security Guard Training

Otherwise known as BSG, basic security guard training teaches new guards the basics of safety procedures in their job and typical duties and responsibilities they need to follow. Typical examples of BSG include:

  • Hospital security course: For 2 days, trainees learn about hospital emergency protocols, patient/customer service, and traffic control.
  • Bank security course: Trainees need to learn how to detect and handle criminals who target banks, as well protecting assets, bank information, employees, and customers.
  • Hotel security course: Trainees learn about the security risks that hotels face and how to be fully prepared for both internal and external dangers.
  • X-ray screening course: Security guards who work at airports learn how to use x-ray machines for security purposes. They also learn other airport safety protocols such as aircraft protection, aviation hazards, passenger control, etc.
  • Special event security course: For 1-3 days, trainees learn safety protocols surrounding the event they are working at and security strategies and operational skills.
  • Cash in transit (CIT) course: Trainees learn how to transport cash and other valuables.
  • Security manager training course: For 5-7 days, trainers learn managerial responsibilities, federal criminal law, state security regulations, etc.

Occupational Health and Safety Courses

A crucial part of security guard duty is keeping safe and compliant, which all security guards need to learn courses on in order to maintain full compliance. Typical OHS courses include:

  • First Aid
  • Workplace health and safety
  • Safety management
  • Conflict resolution
  • Fire prevention and safe evacuation
  • Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (CSHH)
  • Infection prevention

General Security Guard Training

In these types of training, security guards must register voluntarily and be awarded a certificate upon completion. GSC training courses include:

  • Traffic management course
  • Fitness and self-defense course
  • Control room CCTV operator course
  • Operation room supervisor course
  • Control room supervisor course
  • Operation manager course
  • Courses for oil and gas facilities


But how to train security guards is the big question that many business owners need answers to.

Simply read on to find out what should be included in any security guard training program. 

What Every Security Guard Training Program Must Include

Whether your security guards are patrolling the mall, neighborhood playground, or doing armed security for sensitive facilities, your training program must start with the two following things:

Vision Statement

At its core, a good professional vision statement describes what winning looks like for your company. It provides the ends, not the means. 

Training Requirements Document (TRD)

Your security guard training program needs to address the needs of the entire organization. Start by creating a “training requirements” document (TRD). The main features of your TRD should include the following:

  • Your regulations and their requirements.
  • Safety training, especially if your guards are armed. 
  • Voluntary certification for guards at the end of their training.
  • The conditions of the training. How much does building the program cost? How long will it take? The major cost associated with training is the time your officers are taking from their duties. That’s why leading companies are switching to online onboarding, preferably delivered through mobile apps, so that officers can train on the job or at their preference.
  • Training materials – your TRD should include a curriculum. If your training program is just meant to comply with regulations, it’s simple enough to find reference material for resources without too much effort. For example, California requires all security guards to complete the Power of Arrest training. The manual is available online, and you could download it to a mobile training app and have your guards complete it from anywhere, at any time. 

What Topics Should Security Guard Training Cover?

The following security guard training topics should be covered in the program you’re building:

  • Learning to maintain a high visible presence to deter illegal behavior
  • Civil and criminal law understanding
  • Emergency procedures
  • Boosting your awareness of relevant legislation and laws
  • How to detect, deter, observe and report
  • Drug awareness
  • Fire safety awareness
  • Learn how to search individuals
security guard using app for security guard training
  • Escorting techniques
  • Learn how to assess a situation
  • Deescalation techniques
  • Conflict resolution
  • First Aid
  • Monitoring and controlling traffic movement (in all seasons, including winter)
  • Access control – checking baggage and vehicles for illegal substances
  • Crowd control
  • Observing and identifying hazards

Factors Shaping Security Guard Training Development

The following three factors are important because, collectively, they define the environment in which the training development is currently taking place.

Various Security Threats

As security officers, you’re charged with protecting the public from various types of harm. Here are some examples:

  • The threat of weapons of mass destruction, terrorism, political unrest, and economic instabilities.
  • Missions and joint operations within local, state, and national law enforcement.
  • Rapidly unfolding ambiguous scenarios with little time to reach complex decisions.

Obviously, a supermarket security guard (for example) won’t need to go through the same counter-terrorism training as a SWAT unit. However, any training program in this day and age should consider the above factors. 

Technological Changes

Technology is the biggest catalyst for change, and we’re not just talking about the security industry.

The resources for any successful training program should include training on new surveillance technologies and other new tools of the trade. 

Connecteam security training program software user interface

You must consider state of the art technology available to the industry. Tech-savvy professional security officers are already a necessity. They bring added value to the customer, in the form of advanced and quick problem solving, that much is clear. 

Connecteam – The Ultimate Security Guard Training App

Also, for the security officer, learning new technologies can help them expand their career opportunities, and better prepare them for the challenges to come, turning the job description from a dead-end job to one with a promising career path

New technology makes it easier and more effective for security officers to protect their people, facilities, and assets. 

Regulations and Reforms 

The security industry is a heavily regulated one. As noted above, if anything changes, technology will likely be the reason for that change. Technology is already changing the industry by taking a significant portion of violence and crime online, which has created a whole new division of security called cyber-security

However, technology also has a direct effect on security concerns in the offline world too. These concerns will likely be reflected in new regulations and reforms required by security officers. That’s why flexibility is imperative in any training program you implement. 

Your training program must reflect new regulations and industry reforms quickly and easily. Once changes are made to the program, they need to be distributed to the workforce quickly and enable you and them to comply with regulations.

So, make sure your security guard training program is flexible enough to make quick adjustments as they come along.

Use The Latest Technology to Implement Your Security Guard Training Program

There are many noteworthy security guard software solutions available today that let you create, distribute, and track the progress of security guard training programs simply and quickly. 

But if you want to make changes to your program, cloud-based software lets you do that pretty much from anywhere at any time.

With the Connecteam all-in-one security app, you can move your security business forward and gain full control over your security guards.

Whether you need to order uniforms, have a guard of the month contest, update security guards about the new procedures, or get emergency reports and send them to the relevant manager, you can do all of this with just a couple of clicks.

Also, you can send updates to relevant individuals, groups within the company or a specific shift/patrolling unit.

Here are some of the following ways that Connecteam can help you train your security guards.

  1. Use Connecteam’s employee training software to create security guard training programs for your employees from one place with documents to read, and media files to watch.
  2. Test your security guards’ knowledge on any topic or new skill through online quizzes.
  3. Create training forms and checklists to cover all bases.
  4. Schedule your security officers’ shifts.
  5. Track working hours and overtime.
  6. Send and receive immediate individual messages or mass updates.
  7. Collect signed digital incident reports with pictures to your mobile phone.

You can use this all-in-one app’s checklists feature for a variety of different cases, such as:

  • Start and end-of-shift reports
  • Supervisor inspection reports
  • Incident reports
  • Accident reports
  • Customer complaint reports
  • Uniform order forms
  • Alert response reports
  • Weapon cleaning forms

Moving the training program from cluttered spreadsheets and different training materials to a mobile app allows you to train hundreds of guards at one time. 

Save time and money with a unique onboarding process and create a security guard knowledge base where everything is available and transparent, including video content.

Connecteam’s security guard training app is both practical and easy to use. Also, getting started is easy and free for the first 10 users.

Give Your Security Guards the Best Training Resources They Need to Do Their Job Safely and Effectively

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Addressing Common Training Program Concerns

You’ll need to jump over a few hurdles when creating a security guard training program.

You can expect to deal with some pushback as you try to move forward, and here’s how you can deal with the most common causes:

  • We don’t have the budget: companies with formalized training programs have 218% higher income per employee. The same companies also enjoy 24% higher profits than similar companies in the same industry that don’t have formalized training. Research by DDI demonstrates that training increases operating income by 52% and improves productivity by 81%! 
  • We don’t have IT support: actually, you don’t exactly need it. Cloud-based software has made many IT support jobs redundant. There are several mobile app platforms that are cloud-based and help users manage documents. Some are so simple to use (like Connecteam) that you can upload your training program to their platform in no time at all. The really exceptional ones will provide on-demand support to help you complete the process.
  • This requires too much effort: in reality, you’re losing money any time you’re not training your workforce. That being said, setting up a new training program for your security company can be daunting. But it doesn’t have to be. As the saying goes—don’t leave for tomorrow what you can (and should) start today.

The Bottom Line On Security Guard Programs

Like security guards, you are charged with keeping people and property safe and preventing crime. However, there’s one thing you can’t stop: time. 

As time goes by, the security industry changes, too, adapting to new requirements, challenges and regulations.  

But there is always room for new technology that can make security companies more efficient and productive – whether it be through scheduling your guards, training them, or tracking their time. 

Ultimately, the best way for you to generate value for your customers is to develop and maintain a highly qualified and capable security force (for every security guard card they require). 

After all, it’s what your customers expect. So beat the competition by having the best workforce on the clock.

Move Your Business Forward with an All-In-One Security Guard Training App

Schedule, track time, communicate and train your employees from one place with Connecteam’s security guard training app.

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