How to Choose the Right Type of Security Guard For Your Event
As an event manager at your company, you’ve likely created a checklist of all of the things your events need. A schedule? Check. Food? Check. Although every event is special in its own way, the ingredients that make up a good recipe for an event — like a master schedule, detailed itineraries or food for all diet types — don’t always change. However, since each event is unique based on the location and the guests involved, safety is a concern that needs to be researched. Choosing the right event security guard is one of the items to consider.
You may be the best at what you do at your company, but that doesn’t mean you are keeping up with every new advancement in the security industry. In fact, understanding the difference between the different types of security you can provide your guests can be a daunting task. This is especially true if you are consider hiring a security guard for your event, as this person will become an integral part of your event’s success. Just like an employee, a security guard can either enhance or detract from the overall experience.
There are many ways to keep an event secure. Advancements in technology allow for remote monitoring using video, audio and your cell phone to stay in touch. But even real-time video surveillance isn’t equipped to provide you a real-time reaction when a situation occurs right in front of you. Depending on your event and guests, you may need a security guard present to keep your guests safe or to provide a feeling of comfort.
So how do you choose the right type of human security for the job? Here are three questions to ask yourself to help you pick the security you need for your event.
1. How big is your event?
You may be the person responsible for all events, big and small. This can include the summer barbeque in your company’s backyard, or perhaps an annual getaway for a few of your company’s core teams, like executives. No matter what, it’s your responsibility (and the company’s) to keep employees safe, no matter where the locale. If your guests are traveling anywhere, they will rely on you to stay safe.
That’s why it’s crucial to understand how many guests you can expect at the event, as well as any extra persons you may be responsible for. This information is significant when it comes to choosing a security type. For example, if you’re considering having a human security guard, what is the threshold for perhaps needing two guards? Or three? Even if you don’t know the answer, you need to know the numbers involved. No matter what kind of security guard you pick, it’s important to understand the ratio of guests to guards, so you can ensure you are keeping your guests as safe as possible.
Asking how big your event is not just about the number of guests, but also about how much space your event covers at the venue. When you consider the number of guests along with the location, your event may suddenly become bigger than you anticipated, based on the amount of space your event takes up. For example, if you are hosting an event at a hotel and your guests are staying overnight, the “footprint” of your event becomes much bigger than just the ballroom itself. You may want to consider providing security in all places your guests may be during the event, requiring more security than you had originally planned.
2. Where is your event located?
Picking a venue for your event can be one of the biggest decisions you make as a planner. A great location that is suited for your event can make your guests’ experiences that much better. Once you know the number of guests you are planning for, not only can you choose the right venue, but you can also get a better picture of what type of event security you will need.
For example, if you’re proposing a backyard barbeque at your company headquarters, it may not be necessary for your security guards to have firearms. However, if you are traveling by plane to a remote location, it may be important to you that a security guard provides that level of protection. Knowing the number of guests and where the event is located can help you decide how many security guards you need and, most importantly, what type of skills they should possess to fulfill their duty at your event.
One important distinction here is training. Understanding a security guard’s background is crucial for their presence to be a success at your event. Some security guards have more protection skills than others, and a resume can help you distinguish who is the right fit for your event. If it’s for a small gathering, you may not need anyone with an extensive training background. But if your event is located in a dangerous neighborhood or you’ve had issues at your events in the past, you may want a security guard with a law enforcement background to provide that extra level of safety.
3. What are your expectations for this event security guard?
Even if this isn’t your first foray into hiring security guards for an event, missing out on the chance to write down your expectations can start your event off on the wrong foot. Since you are the person with the most insight into this event, it’s your responsibility to take the information you have and anticipate and plan for the needs of your guests. Thinking ahead in this case isn’t only best practice, but crucial. You know it’s an important step to collect the resumes of the security guards you are considering for hire. Sitting down and comparing your expectations to what they’ve promised to provide via their resume will complete your research.
After you’ve documented your expectations, sharing them with your potential hires can help you get a feel of who might have had similar experiences in the past and who might be a good fit for your event. Understanding your past experience and why you asked for a certain type of skill, or why you might want to check their references, can help you and your hired security be on the same page about what a successful event looks like. Communicating your expectations and concerns will create a foundation for a great event, and a fun and safe experience for your guests.
4. Hiring a quality event security guard
Hiring help in the security department can be overwhelming. There’s a lot to know, and while security guards may all hold a similar title, they do not possess the same skills and training. Nearly all states require security guards to complete the licensing process during the first few months of employment, but not all states require other processes like a written test, a physical and more. Plus, there is a common misconception that police officers and security guards are one in the same.
It’s these reasons that knowing your options for security is non-negotiable when planning an event in today’s corporate world. Understanding what security can provide you as well as the event basics will help you decide what type of human security is best to have at your event. Sometimes, factors like where the venue is located or how many guests you anticipate can have a big effect on your security plans. It could even be that, based on your past experiences, you and your guests feel more comfortable with an armed guard versus a guard with no law enforcement training. Sharing this information and more with your hired security will help you plan a safe, fun experience for your guests that satisfies your need for safety, and promises a great event for all.
Are you considering hiring a security guard for your next event? Do you need some help in researching your options? Click here to receive a pricing proposal for all of your security needs!