Job type

Security officer

£16k - £26k

Typical salary

37 – 48

Hours per week

Security officers make sure that buildings, valuables and people are safe and secure.

More info

  • Make sure that buildings, valuables and people are safe and secure
  • Use thinking and reasoning skills for dealing with emergencies
  • You could progress to senior or chief security officer, then supervisor


Your role as a Security officer will vary depending on the industry you work in, and could include:

  • Patrolling premises and securing doors, windows and other entrances
  • Monitoring CCTV cameras
  • Responding to alarms
  • Checking staff and visitors in and out of buildings
  • Guarding cash or other valuables in a security vehicle
  • Operating scanning equipment and devices, for example at airports
  • Searching luggage
  • Guarding the boundaries of important facilities, like airports or power stations


You may work evenings and weekends and shift work is very common. You may work on your own or in a small team and some jobs involve driving. For work involving cash or valuables in transit, you'll spend much of your time in a security van. You'll need a reasonable level of physical fitness.

You'll need

This role would be ideal for someone with the ability to write short reports and follow written instructions, the confidence to challenge people when necessary, the ability to use your initiative and make quick decisions, and the ability to work with technical equipment like CCTV.

There are no set requirements but a good standard of general education would be helpful.

Previous experience of working in the police or armed forces could also be useful.

To qualify for this, you must: be aged 18 or over, pass identity and criminal record checks, and complete relevant approved SIA training.

Employers will carry out checks on your personal and work history going back up to 10 years, and you'll need to let them know about any criminal convictions before you apply for a security licence.

You'll need a Security Industry Authority (SIA) licence for agency and contractor jobs. You do not need a Security Industry Authority (SIA) licence for in-house security jobs at your employer's premises.

You can take a training course approved by the Security Industry Authority (SIA). Many of these courses are run by private security companies.

You may also be able to start by completing an intermediate apprenticeship in providing security services.


With experience, you could become a supervisor, then senior or chief security officer. With further qualifications you could go into security management or training, or set up your own security company.