It is hard to know if one Virginia security company is a better solution than another. With so much on the line, it pays to put some time into comparing companies to find the security company in VA that can meet your specific needs. After deciding between hiring a security guard company vs police officers, you now have to choose the right company. Look for these seven qualities when hiring a security company in Virginia.
#1: Licensing and insurance of security companies in VA
Not only should they be licensed and insured, but they should also verify that they have insurance coverage levels to adequately protect you from litigation. Virginia only requires companies to carry at least $100,000 per occurrence and $300,000 aggregate coverage. However, most lawsuits exceed that amount. Security companies should have at least one million per occurrence and three million aggregate at the lowest amount. It is also helpful if they also have an umbrella insurance policy with a minimum of one million to work beyond that initial coverage.
Additionally, the company should be explicitly licensed by the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice (DCJS).
#2: Quality assurance measures
Talk to the security company about quality assistance measures they take. Companies should have field supervisors in place visiting the location at least several times a week for the life of the service time. Electronic patrol tracking is another feature that many quality security companies offer. Through electronic patrol tracking is not required for every location, it is helpful to select a company that can provide it if you need it. The security company should have some system like this to ensure patrols are occurring.
#3: Management of your account
There should always be an account manager or another person who is directly assigned to your account. This ensures there is a specific person you can go to for specific areas of concerns. It also ensures that someone can make sure your expectations are met. This should be someone within management, above a field supervisor!
#4: 24-hour Support from a live person
Incidents can happen at any time. Your security company should offer 24/7 customer support. You should have a number you can call for immediate assistance and speak to a person who can help you. An excellent way to check this is to call the company after 8 pm (do this before hiring the company) and see who answers the phone.
In many cases, it will be an answering machine (the worst option) or it may be an answering service (better than nothing!) If they do not answer the phones now, you know they will not answer them later. You want it to be a live supervisor or dispatcher. Choose security companies in VA that is prepared to answer your call when you need them.
#5: Highly skilled officers
The professionals they hire matter. Virginia law requires that security officers have 20 hours of training to obtain a licensed, unarmed security officer designation. This type of training is completed one time every two years. A higher quality company encourages education beyond this. Seek out security companies in Virginia that specifically encourage education.
#6: Comprehensive references
Prior to hiring a security officer, the company should provide you with at least three references. Call these and determine if the company offers the quality of service you expect. Additionally, look for testimonials on their website. You also can look for reviews or other information about the company through the Better Business Bureau or third party websites.
#7: Management is local
Local, direct management is something many companies do not have, but can make one of the biggest impacts on your success with that organization. The Virginia security company that you select should offer you local support. There a many large security companies that manage their security teams from afar with little or no local mangement presence on the ground in the actual service area. In this situation, decisions are made by people who don’t know the area. They rarely know the officers being assigned. This lack of knowledge can often result in gurds beiing assigned who are qualified to work but may not have the best temperament or personality for the location that they are servicing. A company that has a local team in your area is a better option. These professionals can select guards for assignments based on skills and your needs. Keep in mind that Northern VA is different from any other location in the DC metro area. You need a team that knows the area.
Security companies in Virginia are not all created equal. Look for the right quallitities and the best choice becomes clear. If you are looking for fire watch in Virginia, you must be even more careful. If your business is located in Maryland be sure to as these 7 Questions to ask when hiring security companies in MD.
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