All of our venue and festival clients are commenting on how hard it is to recruit and retain good security staff. Therefore we’ve partnered with Stage Event Security to bring you some top tips on choosing a good security company for your venue.
For public-facing businesses, such as bars and nightclubs, adequate security is vitally important. Venue security mitigates risk, protects public health and safety, and prevents incidents from escalating further. It can be challenging to find good security staff and solutions for your nightlife venue, which is why we have teamed up with Stage Security to provide this helpful article.
As a manned guarding and venue security specialist based in Ipswich, Stage Security knows what it takes to provide adequate security measures for venues across the UK. In this article, Stage will offer tips on how nightlife businesses can choose a reputable security company to keep their premises safe and secure.
Why Do You Need Venue Security?
First and foremost, it’s important to identify why venues need security. The nightlife scene generally has a bad public reputation. Environments are darker, visibility is reduced, people are intoxicated, and criminals are on the prowl. By welcoming customers into your venue, you are accepting responsibility for keeping them safe. Likewise, this point also counts for your employees.
Security is essential for protecting staff and customers against potential risks. A wide range of dangerous situations and threats can crop up, including theft, assaults, terrorism, intoxication, underage drinking, and anti-social behaviour. Environmental risks can also appear, such as water leaks, trailing cables and poor lighting. The core goal of a security team is to prevent injuries and even deaths from occurring due to risks.
As well as severe injuries to customers or employees, failing to prevent incidents can cause an array of consequences for businesses. If an incident occurs, the company can suffer from financial damage or reputation ruin. There is also the Licensing Act to consider, which aims to prevent crime, discourage public nuisance and protect children. If a business breaks the licensing rules, then its license may be revoked. Being unable to sell alcohol, stay open late, or provide entertainment can be devastating to a nightlife venue.
Security solutions will keep your venue safe and reduce liability should incidents occur. There is also the possibility that your insurance premiums will be decreased as policy providers will see your business as a safer bet due to your actions to mitigate risk. By recruiting venue security specialists, your business will be in the safe hands of experienced professionals. They will know how best to secure a venue, including thorough planning, identifying weaknesses and implementing improvements.
How to Choose a Security Company
There are a lot of factors to consider when searching for the best security company to protect your business. Security is a worthwhile investment that will pay off in the long run. You want to find a company that suits your requirements and budget, only paying for what you need. With that said, you want to avoid a cheap solution just so that you can tick a checkbox.
Here are the best tips to help you find the perfect security company for your venue.
What You Need
Let’s start by considering what services you will require. For venues, we highly recommend hiring door supervisors as a bare minimum. Supervisors, often called bouncers, are the first taste of your venue that people will experience. For this reason, door staff should be friendly but firm and visible. Door supervisors are responsible for permitting entry to a venue, refusing access if a person is underage or intoxicated, and conducting searches to identify banned items such as weapons and drugs. Supervisors will also deal with conflicts in the venue, helping to bring incidents under control and evicting troublemakers.
You will also want to consider how many supervisors will be needed. Generally speaking, a lot of venues will be fine with two supervisors on most occasions. More supervisors may be required if your venue has multiple entry/exit points or you have additional staffed services. Likewise, if you are hosting an event with a large crowd, you will need more manpower. Other security solutions to consider include CCTV, alarm response, event security, cash-in-transit, or mobile patrols.
Experience & Training
With your requirements identified, it’s time to begin researching the options available to you. When searching for a security company, you want to find a firm that specialises in providing the services you require for businesses like yours. Look at their previous work to understand their past experiences by visiting their company website or local news outlets. If they’ve worked for a venue similar to your own, or ideally multiple venues, then this should give you greater comfort. Next up, you want to see what their customers think of the work they’ve carried out. Reviews should be readily available online and will help inform you before committing.
Experience is just one thing. Are the company’s guards fully trained, and do they receive regular training to keep them up to modern standards? Don’t be afraid to reach out and ask questions before hiring the security company. The aim is to find a reputable firm, and any trustworthy company will be more than happy to answer your questions and offer the information you need to make an informed decision. Avoid being pressured into signing any contracts until you’re sure that the company is the right one for you.
Ultimately, you want guards that are trustworthy, experienced and friendly. They are not solely there to act as a visible presence but must be prepared to behave professionally when unexpected situations arise. It is not just about preventing crime and incidents, however. Customer service is a vital skill for security personnel, especially when greeting customers at the venue’s entrance.
Qualifications & Licenses
A lot can go wrong if you hire door supervisors that aren’t quite up to the job. The Security Industry Authority heavily regulates the security industry. The SIA is there to ensure that security staff are suitably trained, qualified and follow industry guidelines. It is a legal requirement that door supervisors hold an SIA licence. Do not appoint a security company if their staff don’t possess the required licences.
Make sure that any guards who will be working on behalf of your business are fully qualified, industry-proven and prepared to deal with any scenario professionally. A Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check should also be carried out to ensure that the security guard is fit to carry out their role. While not mandatory, other accreditations such as CHAS, BSIA and SafeContractor may give you greater peace of mind that the security company is worth hiring.
For our last tip, we will talk about the pricing side of things. It’s important that you avoid paying for products and services that you don’t need, especially if they don’t add value to your security measures. The security company should offer a flexible service and consider your individual requirements, allowing them to suggest a bespoke quote. We recommend that you avoid companies selling fixed packages without considering your needs.
You will also want the security company to consider your individual venue. Every venue is different, with varying layouts, target audiences and neighbouring impacts. A security team should conduct thorough planning and tailor their services based on your venue and its unique potential risks.
If you would like to chat with our team about safety in your venue, we offer comprehensive vulnerability training for venue staff and security teams – please email email@example.com. If you would like to chat with someone about venue security then please do reach out to Stage Security, who kindly sponsored this blog post, on firstname.lastname@example.org.