Security Guards and Related Security Service Workers

(NOC 6541)

in All Sales and Service

This group includes workers who guard and implement security measures to protect property against theft, vandalism and fire, control access to establishments, maintain order and enforce regulations at public events and within establishments, conduct private investigations for clients or employers and provide other protective services not elsewhere classified. They are employed by public or private security agencies, residential complexes, educational, cultural, financial, and health institutions, retail establishments, businesses and industry, investigation service companies, transportation facilities, and organizations throughout the private and public sectors, or they may be self-employed.

Job Outlook

Good

Read more

  • Estimate decline slightly employment change, 2017-2019
  • Estimate 215 openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019
  • Estimate Moderate rate of unemployment in 2016

Compared to: All Sales and Service

  • Estimate Decline slightly employment change, 2017-2019
  • Estimate 5260 openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019
  • Estimate Moderate rate of unemployment in 2016

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “good”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is better than average when compared to other occupations in Nova Scotia. This is a fairly large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities occur fairly regularly. The number employed in this occupation is expected to decline slightly over the next few years, which may affect the number of new opportunities available (yet overall job prospects are still considered good due to other factors). With a large percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to be a key contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Security Guards and Related Security Service Workers most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs may either be permanent or temporary positions, as both are common.

The median employment income for 48% of Security Guards and Related Security Service Workers who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $30,491. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

Hourly Pay

$11.00

Minimum

$12.50

Median

$19.00

Maximum

Annual Pay

$5,139

Minimum

$23,096

Median

$46,506

Maximum

Compared to: All Sales and Service

Hourly Pay

$10.70

Minimum

$12.50

Median

$21.17

Maximum

Annual Pay

$2,949

Minimum

$16,629

Median

$45,086

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

This group includes workers who guard and implement security measures to protect property against theft, vandalism and fire, control access to establishments, maintain order and enforce regulations at public events and within establishments, conduct private investigations for clients or employers and provide other protective services not elsewhere classified. They are employed by public or private security agencies, residential complexes, educational, cultural, financial, and health institutions, retail establishments, businesses and industry, investigation service companies, transportation facilities, and organizations throughout the private and public sectors, or they may be self-employed.

Job duties

The following is a summary of main duties for some jobs in this group:

  • Security guards control access to establishments, operate security control-room equipment and patrol assigned areas to guard against theft, vandalism and fire, enforce regulations to maintain order and resolve conflicts and to monitor establishment activities; ensure safety and emergency procedures are followed; issue passes and direct visitors to appropriate areas, check age identification of patrons, and perform security checks of passengers and luggage at airports.
  • Armoured car guards drive and guard armoured trucks, pick-up and deliver cash and valuables to banks, automated teller machines and retail establishments.
  • Corporate security officers investigate unlawful acts of employees or patrons of establishments and recommend security systems such as electronic detection devices and access devices.
  • Private investigators conduct investigations to locate missing persons and obtain information for use in civil and criminal litigation matters or for other purposes; they may also conduct polygraph tests (integrity surveys) for clients.
  • Retail loss prevention officers prevent and detect shoplifting and theft in retail establishments.

Sample job titles

  • bodyguard (except police)
  • bouncer - security
  • commissionaire - security
  • loss prevention officer - retail
  • private detective
  • private investigator
  • retail loss prevention officer
  • school crossing guard
  • security alarm system consultant
  • security guard

Skills

You should be physically fit and in excellent health, and have a valid driver's licence. Cultural sensitivity, patience, and mental stability are important. You must be resourceful and able to work on your own carrying out instructions given by your employer. It will be necessary to gain a good knowledge of the regulations pertaining to your work. Excellent communication, observation, and problem-solving skills are essential. You should also be able to communicate with and gain the respect of the public. Candidates are required to pass the appropriate background check.

Job requirements

  • Completion of high school is usually required.
  • A college diploma in law and security or police technology may be required.
  • Training is provided for airport security guards and establishment-specific training may be provided for security jobs in this group.
  • Security guards carrying firearms require a licence.
  • Armoured car drivers require a Valid Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL) and a Firearms Acquisition Certificate (FAC) for both restricted and non-restricted firearms.
  • Private investigators require provincial licensure.
  • Responsible beverage service certification is usually required for security staff in establishments serving alcoholic beverages.

Other considerations

Corporate security officers may require experience as a police officer.

By the numbers

Quick look

3,345

employed in 2016

70.5%

employed full-time

0.7%

self employed

25.1%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
74.9%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
50.3

median age

Compared to: All Sales and Service

102,605

employed in 2016

59.4%

employed full-time

6.2%

self employed

60.1%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
39.9%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
37

median age

Where will I likely work?

56.6%

Halifax

15.0%

Cape Breton

12.8%

Northern

10.3%

Annapolis Valley

5.4%

Southern

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

Northern

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

73.9%

Management, Admin & Other Support

8.7%

Public Administration

4.2%

Educational Services

2.4%

Transportation and Warehousing

2.1%

Retail Trade

What is the age of Employment?

20.4%

55-64

19.1%

25-34

17.8%

45-54

16.2%

15-24

15.1%

35-44

11.4%

65+

Compared to: All Sales and Service

35.7%

25-34

28.6%

35-44

21.4%

55-64

Top levels of education

36.5%

High school

$22,157 median annual income
26.2%

College certificate or diploma

$26,284 median annual income
16.4%

Less than high school

$20,319 median annual income
9.1%

Bachelor's degree

$22,408 median annual income
8.4%

Trades certificate

$24,556 median annual income

Compared to: All Sales and Service

40.4%

High school

$12,982 median annual income
19.9%

College certificate or diploma

$19,514 median annual income
18.8%

Less than high school

$9,486 median annual income
10.0%

Bachelor's degree

$20,807 median annual income
8.0%

Trades certificate

$18,797 median annual income

Education & training

Adult high school/secondary diploma programs

This program is typically offered at the high school level.

This instructional program class comprises any program that defines the prescribed requirements, specified by the appropriate jurisdiction, for the completion of and graduation from a secondary school program of academic subject matter offered for adult learners outside of the regular secondary school program. This does not include adult compensatory education programs resulting in completion of a high school equivalency certificate or diploma.

Institutions providing this program

Universite Sainte-Anne

Siège Social: 1695, Route 1

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS B0W 1M0

(902) 769-2114

Nova Scotia Community College - Annapolis Valley Campus

50 Elliott Road

Lawrencetown, NS B0S 1M0

(902) 825-3491

Nova Scotia Community College - Cumberland Campus

PO Box 550, 1 Main Street

Springhill, NS B0M 1X0

(902) 597-3737

Nova Scotia Community College - Akerley Campus

21 Woodlawn Road

Dartmouth, NS B2W 2R7

(902) 491-4900

Nova Scotia Community College - Burridge Campus

372 Pleasant Street

Yarmouth, NS B5A 2L2

(902) 742-3501

Nova Scotia Community College - Kingstec Campus

236 Belcher Street

Kentville, NS B4N 0A6

(902) 678-7341

Nova Scotia Community College - Lunenburg Campus

75 High Street

Bridgewater, NS B4V 1V8

(902) 543-4608

Nova Scotia Community College - Institute of Technology Campus

5685 Leeds Street

Halifax, NS B3K 2T3

(902) 491-6722

Nova Scotia Community College - Pictou Campus & School of Fisheries

PO Box 820, 39 Acadia Avenue

Stellarton, NS B0K 1S0

(902) 752-2002

Nova Scotia Community College - Shelburne Campus

PO Box 760, 1575 Lake Road

Shelburne, NS B0T 1W0

(902) 875-8640

Nova Scotia Community College - Strait Area Campus & Nautical Institute

226 Reeves Street

Port Hawkesbury, NS B9A 2A2

(902) 625-2380

Nova Scotia Community College - Marconi Campus

PO Box 1042, 1240 Grand Lake Road

Sydney, NS B1P 6J7

(902) 563-2450

Nova Scotia Community College - Truro Campus

36 Arthur Street

Truro, NS B2N 1X5

(902) 893-5385

Securities services administration/management

This program may be offered at the college, trades, or university level.

This instructional program class comprises any program that prepares individuals to plan, manage, and supervise services providing private security protection for people and property and related investigative and consulting functions. These programs include courses in security and loss prevention services, private security and investigation techniques, security technologies, personnel management, business operations, marketing, applicable laws and regulations, and client relations.

There are no schools in Nova Scotia offering this program.

Security and loss prevention services

This program is typically offered at the trades/college level.

This instructional program class comprises any program that prepares individuals to perform routine inspection, patrol and crime prevention services for security companies. These programs include courses in the provision of personal protection as well as property security.

Institutions providing this program

Nova Scotia Community College - Truro Campus

36 Arthur Street

Truro, NS B2N 1X5

(902) 893-5385

Employment requirements & contacts

No regulating bodies were found under this occupation profile

Contacts

Nova Scotia Department of Justice, Policing Services Division
P.O. Box 7, 1690 Hollis Street
Halifax, NS B3J 2L6
Tel: (902) 424-4030

Additional resources

There are no additional resources for this occupation.

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