If you're looking to hire a security company to protect your business, make sure you do your homework and find a company that will provide the right level of service for your business needs.
To help you with this, we’ve identified some common mistakes businesses make when vetting security professionals.
1. Not Researching a Company
When you hire a security company, it's important to do your research to confirm that they're properly licensed and insured.
Security companies should provide you with proof of insurance, proof that they are fully licensed to work in your province, and a list of past clients.
It's also wise to check the company's reputation online, including the Better Business Bureau, Yelp, Google reviews, and social media for any negative feedback.
2. Not Checking References
References are your best source of information for a security company's qualifications. They can provide valuable insights into how they’ve handled situations for their clients in the past, and confirm if they’re capable of providing the level of service that you and your business customers expect.
Ask potential security companies for their client testimonials, or contact their previous clients yourself (if you have permission).
3. Not Reading the Entire Contract
Contracts can be long, boring, and intimidating to read, but that's exactly why you need to take the time to understand them. You're about to entrust a company with all of your security needs, do you really want to leave it up to chance? The last thing you want is for there to be any surprises down the road because you didn't read through every single word of your contract.
4. Not Getting Multiple Quotes
One of the most important things you can do when hiring a security company is to get multiple quotes from different companies. This should be standard practice in any industry, yet it's so often overlooked.
Once you’ve secured three or more quotes from potential security companies, compare them based on the level of service that will be provided, not just the cost.
5. Not Considering Add-On Charges and Fees
Add-on charges and fees are common in service industries, but if you don't know what they are, you can be surprised when it comes time to pay.
Review any add-on charges and additional costs that are outlined in your contract. This can include things like travel reimbursement for excess mileage, or the need for additional manpower if a situation changes during an event, like an increase in guest attendance.
6. Not Asking about Training
You’re not hiring a security guard to be the next Albert Einstein. You don’t need someone who can explain the theory of relativity, but you do want them to be prepared for any situation that may arise at your place of business.
There are several things that should be checked when vetting the experience of a potential security company:
- Have their security guards gone through a thorough training program?
- Is training an ongoing process or just one-time?
- Are their guards trained in de-escalation and conflict resolution?
- Can their security guards handle emergency scenarios like fires, building evacuations or active shooters?
- Do they have any other credentials?
- Do they have all of their certifications up-to-date? If not, how quickly can they get them?
7. Accepting a One-Size-Fits-All Security Solution
Instead of putting together a one-size-fits-all security solution, a potential security company should work with you to determine the unique needs of your business, and provide customised security solutions. If the prospective company can’t customise its services, it's probably not the right one for you.
Not All Security Companies are Created Equal
Some may offer more than others when it comes to their services, some may have a better reputation or offer services at a lower price, and some may hold a higher standard for their employee training, or customer service.Smart business owners work with a reputable company that listens to their concerns while delivering customised services to meet their needs.