Security Guards

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About the Job

Guard, patrol, or monitor premises to prevent theft, violence, or infractions of rules. May operate x-ray and metal detector equipment.

It is also Called

  • Watchman
  • Watchguard
  • Truck Guard
  • Transportation Security Screener
  • Timber Watchman
  • Surveillance Officer
  • Station Gateman
  • Special Police
  • Special Officer
  • Ship Keeper
View All

What They Do

  • Monitor and adjust controls that regulate building systems, such as air conditioning, furnace, or boiler.
  • Escort or drive motor vehicle to transport individuals to specified locations or to provide personal protection.
  • Inspect and adjust security systems, equipment, or machinery to ensure operational use and to detect evidence of tampering.
  • Operate detecting devices to screen individuals and prevent passage of prohibited articles into restricted areas.
  • Answer telephone calls to take messages, answer questions, and provide information during non-business hours or when switchboard is closed.
  • Warn persons of rule infractions or violations, and apprehend or evict violators from premises, using force when necessary.
  • Circulate among visitors, patrons, or employees to preserve order and protect property.
  • Respond to medical emergencies by administering basic first aid or by obtaining assistance from paramedics.
  • Call police or fire departments in cases of emergency, such as fire or presence of unauthorized persons.
  • Patrol industrial or commercial premises to prevent and detect signs of intrusion and ensure security of doors, windows, and gates.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: RCE.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Realistic interests, but also prefer Conventional and Enterprising environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Support, but also value Relationships and Independence in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Education Required

These occupations usually require a high school diploma.

Wages

In 2016, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $26,270 with most people making between $17,530 and $38,420

Outlook

0.78%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 43,860 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 47,260 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 340 openings due to growth and about 620 replacement openings for approximately 960 total annual openings.



Pennsylvania Department of Education