Sometimes when reaching out to new properties we hear that they are currently "happy with the service being provided." This is great to hear because it means that the current guard staff is operating at a satisfying level. However, what this doesn't necessarily mean is that the security company itself is doing good by the guards.
One of our latest clients requested that we rehire the entire security staff from the exiting company. When we investigated further, it was revealed that the other company was paying the officers low but charging the client high. To make things worse, payroll was being mishandled and information was not being relayed properly from the security account manager.
How we helped:
We were able to give everyone pay raises and still come out lower for the client. Our App technology helped increase payroll transparency as well as massively improve communication.
Find out what we can do for your current staff (say hello).
You get what you pay for.
The minimum pay rate for SAYF-guards starts at $12/hr.
Compare this to the median hourly wage around the state:
- Tampa Bay ($10.54)
- Miami ($10.63)
- Orlando ($11.07)
- Bureau of Labor Statistics
Additionally, we do not decrease the pay rate if the guard is moved to another site. Many companies will pay based on the location of work. This can create a bait & switch type of situation in which someone may be hired for an $11/hr job but be told only the $10/hr site is available.
Well maybe like 2 words : DON'T IMPERSONATE
There are many firms that try to market themselves as paramilitary or private police. So it's not surprising that certain behavioral limitations had to be included in the handbook.
Badges (don't use the 5 point sheriff's star)
Vehicle Lights (don't use any other color than Amber/Green)
Titles (don't use agent, sheriff, patrolman, trooper etc)
Don't use state seal
Uniforms (ID yourself as security)
It feels much like a series of DON'TS, but there is a section on regulated activity with only one sentence:
"Definition - Providing, or advertising as providing, the service of guarding persons or property for compensation."
Given how all these rules are relative to only one thing, they should of just added "and without pretentiously acting as a law enforcement or gov't agency."
Here's a link to the official handbook
So before I get to the repercussions of getting into a jiu jitsu match with a guard on duty, I wanted to clarify something.
Assault vs Battery:
The difference lies in whether or not someone was actually physically touched or if there was just a threatening intention to do so. Assault in general is when someone intends violence towards another but doesn't actually touch them. It becomes Battery only when someone is physically harmed. Things get even worse if there are weapons involved in which case it would become "aggravated assault" and "aggravated battery."
So, when it comes to these crimes committed against guards the laws are stricter than some may think. For instance, battery against a guard was reclassified from "a misdemeanor of the first degree to a felony of the third degree."
Naturally the consequences are elevated if it becomes aggravated. Check out the details here. You can also learn about the legal lingo around assault & battery here.
So I got a call once from a retired marine looking to do some part time work. He wanted to know what exactly he had to do in order to work in security. I told him basically what I'm about to tell you in regards to pre-employment procedures required by the state.
So, to get right into it--
As far as Florida goes, there are two types of guard licenses:
• "D" - General Security Officer License
• "G" - Statewide Firearm License ("D" is a prerequisite)
Managers & Instructors have their own designated licenses (M, DI, K..). For the most part in order to perform unarmed services an individual must have at least a "D" license. If they wish to perform armed services then they must additionally attain the "G."
A 40 hour classroom course is required to be completed for the "D" and an additional 28 hours for the "G." Its pretty much like any other class you would take with powerpoint presentations, videos, and of course testing. The "G" of course highlights firearm instruction and is different in that regard. Prices vary for the courses and can range from $118-500 depending on the school. A good place to search would be your local colleges who tend to offer these courses year round, but there are private institutes who are licensed to do this as well.
But to be honest, this isn't enough and any company that does employ guards must gauge applicant abilities during the interview process AND after. No joke, I once had a supervisor with a mug shot! It's important to always make it easy for guards to know what is expected of them and to additionally provide them with that information. There are great guards out there but in order to get them you have to set the bar a little higher.
So far around 83% of applicants to SAYF don't make it all the way through. In a future post I hope to further discuss the interview process for other companies including ours and the reason for our hiring rate.
If interested, some legit courses:
Tampa - HCC
Orlando - Valencia College
Miami - Miami-Dade College
Any UAS (unmanned aircraft system) aka Drone that weighs between 0.55-55lbs has to be registered with the Federal Aviation Administration. According to the registration website it states:
"You will be subject to civil and criminal penalties if you meet the criteria to register an unmanned aircraft and do not register."
With that said, its only about $5 to register and shouldn't take longer than a couple of minutes.
You can learn more or register your own drone here.
Our registration number is: FA3PMET737
We offer Drone Patrols!
Amber & Green--
Yup, those are the patrol light colors that every security agency in the state must use. It was done In an effort to clarify and distinguish the types of warning lights utilized by different service vehicles. That way we aren't confused with construction and road site assistance who also use amber lighting.
In reference to security the statute states:
"Vehicles owned or leased by private security agencies may show or display green and amber lights, with either color being no greater than 50 percent of the lights displayed, while the security personnel are engaged in security duties on private or public property."
You can learn more about statute 316.2397 here
Depending on the location a licensed guard can detain any individual for reasons such as:
1. "ascertain his or her identity and the circumstances of the person’s activity."
2. "probable cause to believe that a person has committed or is committing a crime..."
This is all dependent on whether the site under protection is considered a "critical infrastructure facility." Simply put, it's places like power plants, refineries, water treatment centers, secured areas that are vital to the society and economy at large.
Learn more about this statue here
12 hour graveyard security shifts was what my weekend consisted of for years as a college student. After heading out to grad school I started to get more and more into entrepreneurship & technology, which eventually led me to start programming. My affinity for it grew strong enough that I actually left my master's program in order to explore it further.
That was 3 years ago, and now I'm surprisingly back in the industry which I had thought of as only a means to an end. This time though, oh this time, I'm ready to change things up. It seems to have been an organic process in the making. I was developing software with efficiency in mind and at the same time the security service trade was still a decade behind. The more I thought about all of the unproductive practices that were so commonplace, the more I got eager to want to do something about it.
What needed to change:
So what did we do about these 7 points?
For us this is just a start and we hope to continue to innovate and change the way security services are utilized. Check out our blog for any new updates and most of all stay SAYF.