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What is the difference between door supervisor and security guard?

Updated: 2 days ago

The difference between training as a door supervisor or as a security guard can be a bit difficult to understand at first. Once you have read our article we hope you will have a complete understanding and that we have answered this question for you and a few other related frequently asked questions around the topic.

To understand the differences we must first look at the similarities. Both are licensed activities under the Security Industry Authority (SIA) in the private security sector.

A security guard can work in the retail and corporate and commercial sectors whilst a door supervisor can also work in pubs, bars and nightclubs and anywhere else where alcohol is sold for consumption.

As a result, the courses differ between the standard security guards training and door supervisor.

Training as a security guard will take a total of four days learning to finish. The training course includes three modules. These are:

  • Core Learning for Common Security Industry Knowledge

  • Security Guarding Specialist Module

  • Conflict Management Module

Whereas training as a Door Supervisor will take you a total of six days. The course includes classroom learning and 4 multiple choice exams, physical assessments, first aid and counter terrorism.

There are four units in the course:

  • Principles of Working in The Private Security Industry

  • Principles of Working as a Door Supervisor

  • Application of Conflict Management for The Private Security Industry

  • Application of Physical Intervention skills

Training specifically covers, conflict management skills, drug awareness, criminal offence 's, licensed premises and non licensed premises, providing a physical presence and mitigating potential threats such a a persons carrying harmful weapons.

Is a door supervisor higher than a security guard?

No, it is a different license, however a door supervisor license permits you to work in more sectors as mentioned above.

Can I upgrade from a standard security guards license to a door supervisor license?

Unfortunately you cannot, in order to perform a new licensable role you will need to train up from scratch.

Does it cost more to be a security guard or a door supervisor?

Despite a security guard license being more restrictive in terms of job opportunities and pay rate as well as being 2 less days per week training the price difference between becoming a Security Guard or a Door Supervisor in negligible.

At the time of writing a Security Guard Course costs around £180's, whilst a Door Supervision Course costs around £210's.

Should you train as a security guard or a door supervisor?

We advise people looking to enter the security industry to train as a door supervisor rather and a traditional security guard. Simply put as this qualification entitles the person to take on security guard roles as well as door supervisor roles. This will increase the likelihood of you obtaining work and prospects once you have your license.

Once your qualified in Security how do you get your SIA License?

Once you receive your course certificates of completion you can apply for your SIA license online via the SIA website.

How long does the SIA License take to come?

The current wait time to receive an SIA license is around one month to six weeks from application, however it can come quicker. You can check you application status online on the SIA portal.

Other frequently asked questions we receive about being an SIA approved security guard.

Can I use my SIA licence abroad?

You can only use your SIA license to work in the United Kingdom. The Republic of Ireland and other countries in Europe and beyond have different requirements. So if you are thinking about becoming an SIA security guard and undertaking security officer training then you really need to be planning of staying in the UK to make it worth it.

What is the difference between traditional Security Guards and modern day Security Guards?

Traditional security guards were pre 2004 before SIA licensing came out. It meant that anyone could choose to become a door supervisor and a security guard without any training or vetting taking place. That is the main difference between the old and modern security guards. Modern security guards undertake skilled training and vetting to ensure they can suitably provide security services to a safe standard.

What type of duties do many Security Guards undertake?

Many security guards can expect to patrol, safeguard, monitor business premises and deal with front of house and concierge duties in the relevant setting.

SIA Door Supervisors are trained in physical intervention and can use techniques taught on their SIA course as a last resort. Examples of a ‘last resort’ situation include:

  1. Where necessary to prevent harm

  2. When other options have failed, or are likely to fail

  3. When it is not possible or appropriate to withdraw

Door Supervisors should not use any force without good reason if none of the above apply. Failure to heed this advise could lead the Door Supervisor in hot water.

Can a Door Supervisor search me?

The short answer is, only with your permission or if it is a condition of entry to the premises and you wish to gain entry.

Do I need an SIA License to watch CCTV?

If you are getting paid to watch CCTV and it is public space surveillance then yes, you will need to obtain training in CCTV and apply for your license. Close Protection Licenses also cover CCTV. Monitoring business premises remotely via a control centre and surveillance services can also be options if you have this qualification and SIA Licence.

Fahrenheit Security

34 S Molton St, London, W1K 5RG

Telephone: 02074095291




Plus Code: GV72+MG London

Book an appointment:

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