Given the critical nature of the security personnel role—protection of life and property—quality assurance (QA) procedures and practices should form the foundation of a security program.
Following these best practices can deliver superior peace of mind for everyone involved, from an organization’s employees and visitors to the team responsible for safety and security.
On-Site Management Team
In addition to site supervisors, managers and the leadership team need to conduct thorough, on-site inspections regularly and consistently. These quality checks should include not only weekday shifts during business hours, but also evening shifts, weekends and holidays.
Ongoing site visits enable managers to see day-to-day operations firsthand. This intimacy with each organization’s security program provides an invaluable perspective for identifying opportunities for improvement and building relationships.
One critical QA component involves ensuring team members have the capability to conduct the necessary inspections. When personnel are overburdened, standards slip through the cracks. It’s just human nature. QA systems are important, but they must be feasible for people to implement them. Smaller client portfolios allow managers to spend more time in the field with the security officers and ensure standards are being met or a solution is in the works and continuously monitored.
Multiple, Specific Inspection Types
Supervisors and managers should conduct multiple specialized inspections, ranging from officer inspections to safety audits and risk assessments. This approach encourages thoroughness while increasing the managerial presence on-site. A detailed checklist for each kind of inspection ensures consistency: uniforms, vehicles, locations, safety protocols, etc.
The point of the inspections is not to check a box or to catch an officer doing something wrong but to catch someone doing something right. Each inspection offers an opportunity to improve and refine operations, not only at that location but also across the whole organization. Problems that crop up in one location might well be unnoticed elsewhere. Everyone benefits when the process is continuously reviewed and improved and best practices are shared.
QA Reports and Surveys
Using mobile devices to track inspection findings allows managers to ask and answer questions, take photos, and note deficiencies on-site and in real-time. All these bits of information can be tracked, monitored and rated.
At a granular level, tracking any deficiencies regarding vehicles, locations, safety issues, officer knowledge, and training is essential. Analyzing all available data can identify systemic flaws and negative trends, which directs focus where needed and makes it easier for managers to do their jobs. In addition, quickly recognizing problem areas or trends help mitigate them before they become major issues.
Ongoing Communication and Follow-Up
After gathering all this information, communication should be the next step in the process. The data and subsequent analysis need to be shared within the company, with site leadership and officers, and with client organizations to support the continuous enhancement of practices and protocols. For example, data analytics from inspections can inform the development of new training materials at the organizational level, as well as on-site procedures for specific client sites.
Regular contact with employees and clients strengthens these relationships. Better relationships and communication help identify potential issues before they escalate and create a genuine partnership as all parties work together for the account’s success.
Officer retention should be a significant aspect of QA practices. Each interaction provides an opportunity to learn about an employee’s work environment, their job satisfaction, and potential areas for improvement. When officers are cared for and supported—not treated as a number—turnover decreases, which creates a more tightly knit organization and adds value for customers.
In short, Quality Assurance should drive a security organization’s practices. Balancing and economizing the flow of information, analyzing it effectively, and presenting that information to the customer are central tenets of this approach.
At Sunstates Security, we have a dedicated Quality Assurance department with years of experience using the above practices to continuously refine operations across the system and provide customers with the best possible service.
One security officer recently described working for Sunstates as a “challenging” experience—in a good way. “What I mean is the company, and its leadership will challenge you to be better. They will help you set a goal within the company and see you through the process. . . . They will recognize you for the good work you do. They will also help you fix the errors.”
To discuss the benefits of our approach or to review your current security needs, please call Sunstates Security at 866-710-2019 or contact us.