Professional security guards never know what they are going to encounter while on duty. Incidents can happen at any moment. It is possible to predict when an incident is likely to occur. However, history is full examples of incidents happening when are least expected. At any time an incident can happen or something unexpected can take place and a security guard above all should be ready to handle any situation as well having the right equipment and materials to do so. Upon arriving on site here are a few things a security guard should have to be better prepared for their day.
1. Ink Pens (at least 2 of them)
A professional security guard has 2 primary duties…observe and report. Observation can be done by using your eyes. However, reporting requires the guard to have some method of documenting and recording what is observed. A security guard must have an ink pen on their person to be prepared to document their observations and complete reports and other paperwork. A guard should never assume there will be a pen around to complete paperwork. Ink pens have a habit of “walking away”. It is always best that security guards have a couple pens on them at all times.
2. Pocket sized notepad
Experienced guards always carry a small, pocket sized notepad with them at all times. Most reports are on letter sized paper. It is not practical to expect a guard to carry a binder or large notebook around while they are on patrol. Large pads and binders are cumbersome. At a minimum they will be irritating. At their worse binders and large pads can get in the way and reduce an officer’s reaction time when an incident occurs. It is hard to reach for your pepper spray or baton while carrying a large binder. Security guards can use the pocket sized pad to make notes that can be referenced later when they are completing their official reports. These notes of observations may seem minor at the time could be clues that can aid in a criminal prosecution. Security guards must be sure to only write information that is of a professional nature in their notepads, as the pads can be subpoenaed in court cases resulting from incidents that may occur. Taking notes records your observations while they are fresh on your mind. Doing so increases the accuracy of your reports. Many security companies in Maryland, Virginia and Washington DC include an ink pen and notepad as part of their uniform.
3. High quality rubber soled shoes or patrol boots
A sturdy, good pair of security guard shoes can make the difference between having an aching, sore back and being without any soreness at the end of the day. Shoes worn while on duty must have rubber soles. Many posts require a dress style shoe. Even in such cases a rubber soled dress shoe is the best option. Leather soled shoes can become slick and cause those that wear them to fall when running or walking briskly. A professional security guard should make an investment in their shoes. Wearing a cheap, poorly made pair of boots may not hurt your wallet, but they will certainly hurt your back and feet after a long shift. Smart guards buy high quality shoes.
4. A Belt
It may be in fashion in some circles to not wear belts. However, this does not apply to security guards. Belts must be worn to keep your pants in order, maintain a professional appearance and prevent mishaps from occurring in the event that a guard must move quickly. No one wants to be the guard who trips on his pants while rushing to assist in a crisis. If permitted, a duty belt should also be worn. The duty belt should have a fool assortment of tools and weapons to assist a guard in doing their jobs.
5. Fully Charged Mobile Phone
As was previously stated, guards observe and report. A mobile phone is the best tool to use to report an emergency. Having a mobile phone while on duty gives the security guard the capability to call the proper authorities or emergency medical services. Security guards must resist the temptation to use their mobile phones for non-duty related activities such as texting, playing games or surfing the internet. Such conduct is unprofessional and unwise. Due to abuse, many security service companies do not permit the use of cell phones while on duty in locations where there landlines are easily accessible. However, even easily assecilbe landline can be inconvenient in times of emergency. a mobile phone is still the set option. Battery use must be conserved to ensure that the phone will be properly charged in case of an emergency. While battery loss is a natural thing that happens, it is critical to start your shift with a fully charged phone and to charge it periodically during your shift if possible. Having a mobile phone also gives the security guard direct contact with their supervisor or team lead, in the case that they need specific instructions on that particular site.