This group includes security guards and other related workers who protect property against theft and vandalism, control access to establishments, maintain order, and enforce regulations at public events and within establishments, conduct private investigations for clients or employers and provide other protective services not elsewhere classified.
Watch the video below to see what a day in the life of a security officer is like.
People in these occupations:
Estimated median employment income based on 2021 Job Bank median hourly wage rate (median annual salary = hourly wage rate x 40 (hours per week) x 52.14 (weeks per year))
Note:Estimated median employment income based on 2021 Job Bank median hourly wage rate (median annual salary = hourly wage rate x 40 (hours per week) x 52.14 (weeks per year))
Source: 2021 Job Bank Wage Report
Source: B.C. Labour Market Outlook
10 year expected job openings: 5,780
Armoured car guards:
Corporate security officers:
Retail loss prevention officers:
The majority of security guards work full time 40 hours per week, however, some workers are only employed part of the year since many job opportunities are seasonal.
Many of the facilities that security guards monitor require supervision 24 hours a day year round so workers are often required to work shifts that include evenings, nights, weekends and holidays.
Security guards who watch site activity via security cameras spend a large portion of their day looking at monitors, which may result in eye strain and cause fatigue.
These workers may have to travel when monitoring multiple or large sites, guarding items in transit or working in the transportation industry.
Security guards take leadership roles in emergency situations and may have to handle hostile people, which can sometimes make for a stressful work environment.
Source: 2016 Census
In B.C., security guards do not need secondary school graduation, however, it is preferred. Other requirements include:
The course is offered through approved institutions and security companies. Training requirements beyond BST vary depending on where security guards work and include:
Individual security companies often provide additional in-house training.
The new Security Services Act will require bouncers, armoured car personnel, in-house security guards, bodyguards and members of the Corps of Commissionaires to be licensed and undergo a criminal background check. Other requirements for security guards may include:
Those who are certified for an occupation by a regulator elsewhere in Canada can apply for the same certification from the regulator in B.C. Under the terms of the Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA), most applicants who are transferring their credentials from elsewhere in Canada will not be required to complete additional training or testing. However, the B.C. regulator may ask applicants to provide further information such as a letter of good standing, references, or criminal record check.
For those who trained outside of Canada and never received certification from any Canadian jurisdiction, a full assessment is likely needed. Most occupational regulators have a process for assessment and recognize internationally trained applicants.
Contact the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General: Security Services for details on how to apply for certification in B.C.
For information about labour mobility in Canada, visit www.workersmobility.ca.
View a list of B.C. occupational regulators.
For more information about programs offered specifically for this career, visit EducationPlannerBC.
Every job calls for a certain set of skills. Knowing those skills is the first step in finding a good career fit.
Here, you will find the 35 most relevant workplace skills. Some are more important to achieving success in a certain career than others. These skills may come naturally to you or you may need to gain them through education, training and experience.
See the list of work-related skills below, ranked in order of importance for this career. You’ll also find the skill strength needed, letting you know how capable you must be in that skill.
Check out the list and see if this career matches your skills—take that first step!
Security guards are needed to guard construction sites from theft and vandalism. As well, they are needed to protect most commercial and some residential buildings once construction is completed. Since many new graduates quickly move to higher paying jobs outside of the industry, there is currently a shortage of workers in B.C.
There will be growing demand for people with advanced security solutions training and threat/risk assessment skills. Those with previous experience working as security guards, in law enforcement or in the military will have a greater chance of finding work.
Most work opportunities will continue to be in urban centres such as the Lower Mainland and Southern Vancouver Island regions where there are more facilities that require monitoring. There may be higher growth in any port area due to the Transport Canada changes to the Marine Security Act and enforcement.
Increasingly, security professionals are using computers and technological devices in their daily work, so workers must be comfortable using this equipment.. As the use of closed circuit television cameras increases, those who can use monitoring equipment and software will have more job opportunities. However, increased use of closed circuit television monitoring may reduce the number of patrolling security guards needed.
Security guards with a lot of experience may move into supervisory positions in the occupation or into corporate security management. Supervisory courses are offered to those who want to advance their career.
With additional training and education, security guards may move into law enforcement careers. For example, they may become police officers, corrections officers or sheriffs.
Commissionaires have an established system for moving up, with four levels of supervisor positions and three levels of management positions they can compete for.