What’s the difference between door supervisor and security guard?

The roles of SIA door supervisors and security guards are often conflated in the minds of the public. However, they serve different functions and are better suited to different situations. There are also legal requirements that you must bear in mind. Knowing the differences between the two roles ensures that you’re employing the right kind of operative for a role.

What activities do security guards undertake?

The activities that are undertaken by manned SIA security guards fall into three categories. They can include providing a physical presence, patrolling or offering surveillance services to deter behaviours or to provide information about behaviours and actions when they occur. Guarding activity includes the following:

1. Guarding of premises
2. Guarding of property
3. Guarding of one of more individuals

The key difference is the type of responsibility

An SIA door supervisor is the type of guard you are required to have by law if any manned guarding tasks involve licensed premises. In this sense, licensed premises mean those that are open to the public for the consumption of alcohol or when regulated entertainment is being provided on site.

Not all manned guarding falls under the remit of a door supervisor. For example, specialist licenses are required for close protection, the protection of cash and valuables while in transit, and public space CCTV surveillance. In addition, there is the traditional security guard. A general Security license is required for manned guarding activity that doesn’t fall under the remit of any of the specialist licenses mentioned above.

When should you choose an SIA security guard?

Traditional security guards with basic licenses are ideal for environments that don’t serve alcohol and where security must be maintained. For instance, patrolling, securing and monitoring business premises out of hours is a key role that many security guards undertake.

It’s important to be aware of the restrictions on CCTV use for standard security guards. While they are permitted to use CCTV to identify trespassers and protect property, they are not permitted to use it to monitor the activities of the public or to identify a particular person. A Public Space Surveillance (CCTV) license would be required for this, and therefore standard security guards aren’t permitted to work in public spaces such as shopping centres.

When should you choose a door supervisor?

As already mentioned, an SIA door supervisor is a legal requirement on premises where alcohol is going to be served. Their training specifically covers the common variables that door supervisors will face every day. This includes conflict management skills and physical intervention skills. As such, they are trained to deal with those who are intoxicated and potentially violent.

SIA security for you

SIA door supervisors play a vital role for licensed premises across the UK. Whereas if there is no alcohol being served, an SIA approved security guard will be the role needed.

Able Investigations’ team of SIA security guards in Bristol have undertaken rigorous, tactical training to ensure they are prepared for any stressful situation that may arise. Training has come from our very own MD, a licensed BTEC level 3 Instructor and supported by training from a very experienced retired police officer.

To find out more about our security division, you can call us on 0845 370 7401, email us or fill in our contact form and we will get back to you.

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