Pilgrims Group ranked in Top 5% of UK security companies following SIA and ISO audits

David Freear: Chief Operations Officer at Pilgrims Group

David Freear: Chief Operations Officer at Pilgrims Group

Security specialist Pilgrims Group has officially been ranked in the Top 5% of all the UK’s 800 security companies having passed two quality audits with further improved scores and zero improvement needs.

Pilgrims Group bettered its previous score for the Security Industry Authority’s (SIA) Approved Contractor Scheme (ACS) audit as well as passing the International Organisation for Standardisation’s (ISO) audit with “outstanding” marks.

In particular, two areas of good practice were identified by the SIA in its report. First, Pilgrims Group’s training portfolio. This includes the eGuarding training package (which won the Training Initiative of the Year category at the Security Excellence Awards), the company’s new Xpatter database (designed to report on international incidents and hot spots and which is available as a mobile app) and the LifeSaver product. The latter provides end user customers with a series of scenarios for key incidents such as fire scenarios, burns and vehicle safety.

Also praised was the company’s ongoing work with the City of London Police and the local Chamber of Commerce as well as its support for the hugely successful Cross-Sector Safety and Security Communications hub.

The ACS audit actively measured Pilgrims Group’s service against 89 different criteria. Pilgrims Group’s score increased on last year, in turn representing a significant pass in all areas with no improvement needs required.

For its part, the thorough ISO audit tested the quality of the company’s services and standard operational procedures, including emergency procedures, general duties, technical systems and administration. The audit of Pilgrims Group’s teams revealed no non-conformances, either major or minor.

“A thorough external assessment of what you do is vital when it comes to maintaining quality and driving improvements in any business sector,” stated David Freear, chief operations officer at Pilgrims Group. “The audit is an effective way to do this and shows our clients that we meet and, in many ways, exceed all of the criteria and standards set by the Regulator. Our membership of the ACS scheme is extremely important and it’s a credit to our team that we’ve achieved such a high rating.”

Closing the gap: strengthening the case for business security

Pilgrims Group’s senior advisor, Sir David Veness, has presented the argument that recent developments in international terrorism – and the current response to the threats and risk posed – have strengthened the business case for corporate investment in security.

The recent presence of armed soldiers on the streets of French and Belgian cities, for instance, demonstrates “changed circumstances and novel dimensions” of the challenge.

Business leaders are urged to consider the key factors which have led to these changed conditions:

*The threat is growing faster than the response and has created a gap in security

*The threat and the security gap is likely to be enduring

*The potential impact upon business encompasses staff safety and security both at home and abroad

*The changed threat and response has wide implications for business operations and thus necessitates a more integrated and comprehensive security policy

“The opportunity for business arising from these factors is to assess the need for self-help and sharpen the corporate security posture,” stressed Sir Davies Veness. “This opportunity extends to the business contribution to closing the security gap in the wider community interest.”

Sir David believes that a sound beginning to the process of assessment of the need for business change is to analyse the reasons for the growing threat and to appreciate the limitations upon response.

“On the basis of analysis of the threat of international terrorism and the current response, the business case is clearly made out for a step change when it comes to in-house corporate security and for the business reinforcement of both public and private sector security.”

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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