SIA launches new consultation exercise focused on licence-linked qualifications

The Security Industry Authority (SIA) has just launched a new consultation to help determine the content of the next generation of compulsory qualifications for licensed operatives in the private security industry. This new consultation will run for four weeks until Monday 11 February.

Following an initial consultation last year, the Regulator for the private security industry has been working closely with expert Working Groups to inform the content of these draft specifications. These panels were made up of private security industry representatives and subject matter experts. The new draft specifications include their suggestions, as well as the findings unearthed from extensive research conducted last October in order to understand the current and future skills needs of the private security industry in the UK.

The development of these specifications is a key milestone in the SIA’s Private Security Skills and Qualifications Review. This new consultation is an essential element. In addition to requests for comment on the specifications, the Regulator is also seeking views on the following important areas:
*Is the proposed content fit for purpose?
*Does the new content represent an unreasonable burden on individuals and businesses seeking to enter the industry
*Should the additional content relating to the door supervisor role be included in the close protection specification to facilitate the current licence integration arrangement? Or should licence integration end such that close protection licence holders can only work in close protection roles?
*Should there be compulsory physical intervention training for the security officer and close protection roles

Fit for purpose qualifications

Tony Holyland, head of quality and standards at the SIA, commented: “We’ve gone to great lengths to ensure that the next generation of qualifications are fit for purpose. This is the latest stage in a robust development and consultation process. The initial consultation attracted more than 840 responses, while this brand new consultation will be equally meaningful. This is the last chance for the public to have its say and help us to make sure the specifications are right. We all now have an opportunity to shape the future of the licence-linked qualifications and ensure they’re relevant for the security industry in the years ahead.”

Holyland added: “As always, it’s essential that as many people as possible give their views on this new consultation. Employers and prospective operatives spend a considerable sum of money each year on these qualifications, and they need to be fit for purpose. The SIA can only achieve this with the help of the private security industry.”

This new consultation is structured around the SIA’s six licensable sectors that require a qualification. These are backed by nine sets of skills specifications which are included in the consultation.

The SIA’s licensable sectors that require qualifications are Cash and Valuables in Transit, Close Protection, Door Supervision, Public Space Surveillance (CCTV), Security Guarding and Vehicle Immobilisation.

Once the consultation closes, all feedback will then be reviewed to develop the final versions of the specifications. These final versions will appear on the SIA’s website by the early Autumn. The specifications will then be used by the awarding organisations to develop the licence-linked qualifications.

*Access the consultation website and share your views with the Regulator

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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