A security officer job description helps you know key information about the field. Since security job officer performs a variety of functions in order to ensure public safety, it’d be good to know all your possible options from the get-go. For example, they carry out surveys on areas which have been assigned to them for any illegal activities. These can range from private properties to buildings.

They also offer protection to people from a variety of hazards such as vandalism, terrorism, fires, and theft. They actively patrol assigned areas in order to ensure public safety. In some cases, they use surveillance and security systems in order to carry out their functions.

Security officers also deal with a host of emergencies. Generally, one does not require any academic qualifications in order to qualify as a security officer. However, it is helpful if one has a good education standard. In order to work as a security officer, one will require a Security Industry license. One also needs to be courteous and helpful as security officers generally deal with a lot of public order issues.

Some security officers may be armed like police officers.  However, the kind of tasks the security officers carry out will depend on their work settings.  For example, if you are working as a transportation guard, you will use tools such as detectors for screening passengers. In casinos, security officers will not only be screening people but they also watch out on cases of cheating by gamblers as well as any underage gamblers.

Jobs and Responsibilities for Security Officers

  • Performing patrols, monitoring and securing of premises, often with the help of closed circuit television or CCTV.
  • Checking openings such as doors and windows for any signs that has been an unauthorized entry.
  • Watching out on various irregularities in the premises such as unlocked security doors, leakages or equipment malfunctions and sending incidence reports to the relevant authorities.
  • Monitoring alarm systems and responding to alarms
  • Making security arrangements and issuing security passes to authorized visitors.
  • Offering clients and the public assistance
  • Offering armed escort services for payroll deliveries
  • Monitoring suspects and reporting their activities to the police. In many cases, they may also apprehend and detain suspects as they wait for the arrival of the police.
  • Carrying out close monitoring of the computerized alarm systems and the CCTVs. They then communicate information to their mobile units using radio communications when there is a need to attend to the alarms.
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  • Performing checks on travelers and their hand luggage in order to detect any security threats such as explosives or any concealed weaponry.
  • They monitor, detect and report any cases of theft, fraud as well as any unlawful activities carried out by business patrons or even employees.
  • Providing security to various organizations such as banks and restaurants.

Security Officer Training

Employers prefer hiring security officers who hold a least a high school diploma or a GED although in some cases, these may not be necessarily required. Having a previous experience in law enforcement duties will definitely give you an extra edge.

When hiring, employers will run background checks on the individuals in order to verify if they have any criminal record. There are employers who also carry out drug tests. Once hired, the candidate will be taken through a comprehensive on-site orientation so as to familiarize them with their roles and responsibilities.

If you will be working as an armed guard, then you must complete a firearms training. The requirements for armed guards vary from state to state. All states now require the registration of security officers who bear arms.  Additionally, armed guards will have to undergo a more comprehensive on-the-job training. There are security guard training and certifications that one can undertake in order to fulfill the requirements of a security officer job and improve their employment prospects.

Apart from the educational requirements, there are various other personal qualities which are desirable in a security officer. These include the following:

  • They must be physically fit. A medical examination may be performed on the candidate.
  • They have to be observant
  • They must possess excellent communication and negotiation skills
  • Must have good eyesight and hearing
  • Must be responsible persons
  • They have to be trustworthy
  • You must be an assertive person who also has good interpersonal skills


According to data by BLS, the median salary of security officers in 2013 was $24,070. The highest paid security officers earned $43, 150 while the lowest paid earned $17, 510.  The best paying industries for security officers include electric power generation along with natural gas and distribution. The areas where security guards earned the highest include Texas, New York, California and San Luis Obispo amongst others.

Job Outlook for Security Officers

Based on data from the Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS), there will be a steady job growth in the security profession between 2012 and 2022 with an annual growth rate of 12.1%. The good job prospects for security officers is driven by a multiplicity of threats facing many US companies and organizations including increased terrorism, theft, and vandalism. Over that 10 year duration, some 129,600 jobs will be created in the profession.

The majority of security officer positions are in the security services and the investigative services.  Many who work in these areas have an average annual remuneration of $25, 570. The security officers who carry weapons generally earn higher salaries than their counterparts who do not. Additionally, they have greater potential for advancement in their profession and for even higher salaries.


Below are some of the biggest sites that feature security officer listings: