Security officers require training in all states. Each state has its own individual requirements. The amount of training needed for certification can vary between eight and 40 hours depending on the state, with extra hours normally required to be able to work with a weapon. The courses for certification are typically very easy to pass, given that they are offered by private companies with an incentive to get as many students certified as possible — however, it is in the students’ best interests to know the regulations within the industry as best as they can, to do the best job possible.
All states require background checks to ensure that security officers are fit to handle the responsibilities expected of them, especially since security officers are critical for protecting valuable property and using proper judgment. Generally, a conviction for a felony or other serious crime rather than an arrest will cause someone to lose their eligibility. Once certified officers begin applying for security jobs, they will likely face another background check by security companies, though these checks aren’t necessarily very thorough.
Once hired by a company, security officers are likely to go through additional training to make sure they understand the specific tasks of their job. They may also be subject to surprise inspections by government officers to ensure they are in compliance with industry standards. While working at their job, they will be observed by their supervisors to ensure they are meeting expectations, and will be given feedback to improve when necessary, as in other fields.
Though the pay in the field isn’t so high, it can be rewarding for many people to work in the field due to the responsibilities they carry and the social interaction it may allow with the public. With enough work and dedication, it is also possible to rise within a company and earn a good salary. Those with military or law enforcement experience are especially sought after for promotion within the field.