A Comprehensive Guide on Starting A Security Guard Company

Security is crucial to everyday life and operations. It’s in this capacity that homes, businesses, schools, and buildings are made safer and more accessible. With current and potential threats looming on the horizon, individuals and entities need to invest in well-trained security professionals and equipment to adequately protect themselves and their assets. A security guard company can be invaluable in this regard.

There is plenty of room for growth in the $132 billion-plus security industry considering the high demand for its services. And it is this surge in demand for security guards that has prompted entrepreneurs to set up security firms to take advantage of this lucrative business opportunity. For the uninitiated, it may be complicated to understand what goes on behind the scenes to provide this important service. This is where this guide is meant to help.

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Overview of a Security Guard Start-Up

Establishing a security guard company is a great way to build a personal or business portfolio while serving the public. However, the nuances of this enterprise are wide, and a comprehensive plan and strategy should be part of the venture. To provide an idea of the overall business model, the following are components of security guard companies:

Offering Security Services

One of the most obvious benefits of starting a security guard company is the sheer variety of services it can offer. Not only do customers need to protect their properties, assets, and other relatable valuables, but they also have to guarantee the privacy of individuals (including the most vulnerable) who need to be kept in custody. From physical security to crime prevention, a security guard company can be the ideal solution for such situations.

Obtaining Licenses, Permits, and Accreditation

It’s critical to ensure that a security firm has the necessary licenses and permits to conduct its operations. These are essential documentation that requires constant updating. It is also necessary to comply with relevant industry standards and regulations to protect the company’s licenses and stakeholders.

Hiring and Training Security Guards

Protecting valuable assets always requires properly trained security guards. Security guard companies must have a comprehensive training program in place for their employees before they can open for business. This includes certifying and licensing them, teaching them basic skills, and ensuring that they have the right attitude, knowledge, and mindset for the task.

Creating and Managing a Security Protocol

One of the most critical elements of a security guard company is to have a well-written, effective security protocol in place. A security protocol is a list of security-related responsibilities, procedures, rules, and policies that ensure the security and safety of assets. It is the bible of any security firm and outlines what the employees must follow.

Building Security Equipment

Security equipment plays a vital role in providing adequate protection. Some of the equipment can include but are not limited to:

  • Security alarms
  •  CCTV
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Security software
  • Access control devices
  • Wireless communication devices
  • Security systems
  • Security cameras
  • Smart door locks

These, among others, are just some of the tools security guard companies employ to ensure that their clients are adequately protected.

How to Start a Security Guard Company

Security guard companies can operate in a wide array of settings, but each business has its own set of challenges and requirements. Below are a few pointers to help guide entrepreneurs who are just starting their businesses.

Business Plan

Staying afloat as a company requires a business plan. For this reason, it’s important to study the industry, the market demand, and the competition to come up with a workable business plan that will help achieve both short-term and long-term business goals. When analysing the market, businesses should consider the insurance required by state laws. This serves to protect everyone’s interests, including customers and employees alike.

Other working parts of a business plan encapsulate a detailed overview of services to be provided, financial necessities (including launch budgets, sales projections, employee packages, and other overhead costs), in-depth business analysis, and marketing strategies.

Legal Requirements

It is important to study local and state laws and regulations to ensure compliance, protect the business, and minimize risk. The same goes for the other legal formalities, including business permits and licenses, company name and trademark registration, and tax compliance. In places like the UK, security companies are regulated by the Security Industry Authority (SIA), while in the U.S., security companies are licensed by the State, not the Federal government.

Also required are a private patrol operator license and a qualified manager license. The former grants individuals the authority to operate security guard companies; while the latter enables managers to handle security matters, in general, under the direction of the company. Business owners may have to pay $250 to $1,000 in licensing fees.


The business’ insurance requirements can be extensive and cover a wide array of risks. Insurance may cover workers’ compensation for security staff, liability insurance for business assets and operations, and property insurance for business premises and property owned by the business owner. It is in the case of a lawsuit, for instance, in which the security guard company may be held liable for damages and injuries.Insurance coverage ranges from $100,000 to $1 million, depending on the state.

Private security firms are also encouraged to subscribe to a risk management program. These programs are designed to protect companies against risk-prone behaviour and ensure they comply with state laws and regulations.


Establishing a security guard business requires considerable capital, which in this case may be the most challenging part. It’s often necessary for private security companies to start with a budget that will cover operating costs for at least one year.

Depending on the industry, the type of services to be offered, and the company’s financial standing, it may be necessary to secure bank loans to kickstart the business. It’s also possible to tap on the equity capital of individuals who can put up start-up capital as investments. It’s a good way to secure funds for the company.

Hiring and Training

Having adequate and experienced security personnel is the backbone of any business. It also comes with its challenges. One is the cost of hiring security guards. Recruiting fees, training, and security certification costs are accounted for, along with payroll and remunerations. Hence, a detailed staffing strategy is critical.

Proper instructions, necessary guidance, and monitoring of quality are vital. As with any business, a clear understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of security personnel will help the business to provide the best possible services.


As mentioned before, security guard companies have a lot of potential to grow. For individuals looking to venture into this industry, getting the right strategy in place is critical to ensure a smooth transition. It will help their businesses avoid unnecessary expenses while putting them on the right path.

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