Security guards help protect some valuable stuff, which varies depending on where they're working. Maybe you'll work for a jewelry store so you'll learn to protect precious gems or maybe you'll work for an apartment complex where you'll be protecting the residents.
Really, there isn't a limit for who or what business needs a security guard. You can find work just about anywhere. A lot of businesses struggle with theft, some even have violent situations arise frequently. Other companies deal with people not following the rules and like to have a security guard to help. So you see, you're needed everywhere.
Sometimes a venue or event will be so big, they'll have x-ray and metal detector equipment setup. In these situations, you'll have to operate and examine those machines as people walk through. Or maybe you'll end up as an individual person's security guard. Whatever you end up guarding, just make sure you're ready for whatever is thrown at you.
Security guards and gaming surveillance officers patrol and protect property against theft, vandalism, terrorism, and illegal activity.
Most security guard jobs require a high school diploma. Gaming surveillance officers sometimes need experience with security and video surveillance. Most states require guards to be registered with the state, especially if they carry a firearm.
As you move along in your career, you may start taking on more responsibilities or notice that you've taken on a leadership role. Using our career map, a security guard can determine their career goals through the career progression. For example, they could start out with a role such as security officer, progress to a title such as officer and then eventually end up with the title operations officer.
What Am I Worth?
Mouse over a state to see the number of active security guard jobs in each state. The darker areas on the map show where security guards earn the highest salaries across all 50 states.
|Rank||State||Number of Jobs||Average Salary|
The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 25.3% of security guards listed customer service on their resume, but soft skills such as communication skills and good judgment are important as well.
Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Security Guard templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Security Guard resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.
After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:
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Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a security guard. The best states for people in this position are Hawaii, Washington, Minnesota, and Oregon. Security guards make the most in Hawaii with an average salary of $42,908. Whereas in Washington and Minnesota, they would average $41,518 and $36,914, respectively. While security guards would only make an average of $36,599 in Oregon, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.
|Rank||Company||Average Salary||Hourly Rate||Job Openings|
|1||CSC Holdings LLC||$37,077||$17.83||884|
|2||Universal Protection Service||$35,745||$17.19||2,425|
|3||United States Marine Corps||$31,374||$15.08||621|
|4||Andy Frain Services||$30,876||$14.84||635|
|6||Admiral Security Services||$30,872||$14.84||645|
|8||West Coast Choppers||$30,863||$14.84||951|
A security officer is a watch person with a wider range of duties and the ability to exercise independent judgment, while a security guard is a watch person who is assigned a particular post or patrol area and has little independent judgment.
It takes 3 years of professional experience to become a security guard. That is the time it takes to learn specific security guard skills, but does not account for time spent in formal education.
No, security guards do not make good money. The median hourly wage is only $14.27 an hour ($29,680 a year). The hourly wage for a security guard ranges from $10.17 ($21,159 a year) and to $24.19 ($50,319 a year).
It takes as little as a week to become a security officer. The first step is obtaining your Class B license. The license requires a minimum of 40 hours of professional security training, followed by an exam.
The base qualification of a security guard is a high school diploma or its equivalent. Though it is quite rare, companies may prefer to hire security guards with a two- or even a four-year degree in criminal justice, police science, or another applicable field.