Ten Ways to Spot an Unprofessional Security Guard Company
First impressions mean everything in the security industry, especially when it comes to hiring a professional security guard service. If you’re interviewing a potential security company and you are dissatisfied with the appearance of their company staff or security guard personnel, take note. A security company that is professional should dress the part — any failure to meet this basic standard is an indication that they may fail in other areas of their service as well.
It’s All About The Money and Not The Service
It’s easy for a security company to claim that they’re dedicated to providing exceptional service, but it’s not easy to live up to those expectations. If the company you work with for security continually disappoints you with their customer service, this is a good indication that their services may fail to meet your expectations in other areas as well.
Superficial Background Checks for Security Guards
You should do a thorough background check on every individual that is coming onto your premises. When interviewing a potential security company, always make sure that every one of their staff has undergone an extensive criminal background check and can provide excellent personal references.
Bad Reviews from Previous Clients
Any security company that receives great reviews from their clients will be proud to share them with potential customers. If a company is evasive when you ask to see some of their reviews or references, it is likely because they have something to hide. Never hire a security company that has a history of low performance. Before hiring a potential client, you should check their Google reviews and read feedback on the company logged by the Better Business Bureau.
Poor Customer Service
While human errors can occur on any jobsite, excellent customer service should mean that should any difficulties arise, any errors can be handled with ease BEFORE it can become a larger issue. On the other hand, poor customer service can stem from lack of organization, poor communication or improperly managed or administered protocols onsite. If this poor service begins to affect your security, it’s a good indication that it may be time for a new security provider.
Security Companies That Are in Non-Compliance with Government Standards
Security companies operating illegally are increasingly common in Ontario. You should always ask potential security companies to show a copy of their compliance letter from the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services, which shows their agency license and that they are in full compliance with the PSISB and its regulations.
Security Guards Committing Time Theft
When you pay for security services, it’s with the expectation that you have a secured premises when there’s a guard on duty. But if one of your security guards isn’t at their posted when needed, are you getting your money’s worth?
Time theft at work occurs when an employee accepts pay from their employer for work that they have not actually done or for time they are not at their post. Since the employee is not actually doing the necessary amount of work during their shift it is considered a theft of time from the company.
Security Guards Are Not Police Officers
According to our PSISA in the Code of Conduct, security guards in Ontario are prohibited from presenting themselves as police officers or performing police-related duties. For this reason, they are also prohibited from using the following words when referring to their work as security guards:
- Detective or Private Detective
- Law Enforcement
For example, security guards are prohibited from referring to themselves as “security officers”. If a security guard addressed him- or herself as “security officer”, that means that the security company is not in full compliance. Furthermore, if you search for a security company website and you find “security officer” or “officer” that is a violation of sections 35 and 40 of the PSISA.
Security guards violating security policies.
Security guards, barring some rare instances, are there to observe and report, not enforce provincial/local laws. When conducting day-to-day work, each security guard is responsible for upholding company and security protocols for the health and wellness of each person in the vicinity. If they fail to comply to or uphold these policies, it could present a security liability risk to your company.
Individuals found guilty of offences under the PSISA could face a fine of up to $25,000, imprisonment for up to one year or both. As such, it is crucial that security guards comply with all aspects of the PSISA and its regulations to avoid the possibility of being named in a complaint or facing charges.
Security Guards Using Excessive Force
The law is clear that security guards have no more right to use excessive force to execute a citizen’s arrest than any other citizen. In fact, many security guards are obligated to follow a hands-free policy barring them from physically touching any person, except in extreme circumstances.
Following the requirements of the government of Ontario, each security guard is also required to undergo extensive training to manage security incidents effectively. And in the event that a security guard is required to apprehend a suspect or make a citizen’s arrest, it should be with the proper training to avoid the use of excessive force.