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How to Become a Security Guard in South Africa

Becoming a Security Guard in South Africa is a little complex compared to other countries and jurisdictions:

  • There are multiple SA government agencies you will have to go through.

  • Security Guards are given a letter grade depending on the security role.

On your journey to becoming a Security Guard in South Africa, you will have to deal with two government agencies:

  • Safety and Security Sector Education and Training Authority (SASSETA)

  • Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority (PSIRA)

SASSETA is the government agency that will regulate your South African security training. Your training will have to be completed by a SASSETA approved provider.

South Africa

PSIRA is the SA government agency that regulates security licensing. Once you complete your security training, PSIRA will be the government agency that issues you your South Africa Security Guard license and letter grade.

South Africa Security License Grade

  1. Grade E: This is an entry level grade. You will focus on security patrolling with a grade E.

  2. Grade D: This is also an entry level grade. You will perform security patrolling and access control with a grade D.

  3. Grade C: A grade C used for security roles that require some delegation.

  4. Grade B: Grade B is a Security Supervisor type role.

  5. Grade A: Grade A is used for Security Management.

SA guard license

South Africa Security Guard License Requirements

  1. Age: You must be 18yo or older.

  2. Criminal Record: You cannot have a criminal record of any kind or be under investigation for a crime. PSIRA will perform a records check on you during the application process.

  3. Grade Nine Education: You need at least a grade nine education or equivalent.

  4. South Africa Citizen: You need to be a South Africa citizen or be a permanent resident of SA.

  5. English: You must be able to speak and write in English.

  6. Government Security Force: You cannot be a member of any government's security force or agency.

  7. South Africa Approved Security License Course: You need to take SA approved security courses based on what security grade you want to enter. It is recommended to contact SASSETA for approved security training providers.

What Does a South Africa Security Guard Do?

South Africa Security Guards Patrol Vacant Locations

South Africa Security Guards will do foot patrols of locations for a set number of times per shift.

A common task for a South Africa Security Guard will be checking mechanical rooms for any unusual signs or potential health and safety issues.

South Africa Security Guards watch for hazards and fill out hazard reports (South Africa Guards write a lot of reports).

Guards in South Africa document and report maintenance issues to supervisors.

Many South Africa security sites require Guards to monitor fire extinguishers to ensure that they are not overdue for inspection (official reviews are done by maintenance personnel).

South Africa Security Guards write a lot, including filling in logs as their shifts progresses with what activities are being done at what times. South Africa Guards will have their own security notebooks and will constantly note all unusual sightings, occurrences, and incidents.

South Africa Security Guards will respond to alarms and act accordingly as per the Emergency Response plan set in place by supervisors. This may include,

Evacuation of the security site.

Checking alarm system on the way out for information about where the problem is occurring.

Contacting supervisors.

Responding to incidents and completing all reports as necessary.

South Africa Security Guards Protect Sites with Customers

If a South Africa Security Guard is working in a team environment, they will usually meet for a pre-shift briefing at a set location. Once the meeting has been completed the South Africa Security Guards will go directly to their designated sites.

In South Africa security site locations with customers, Guards will do a lot of patrolling. This can be in a building or outside in places such as parking lots.

South Africa Security Guards are usually responsible for site cleanliness when there are no designated cleaning staff. This means as a South Africa Security Guard, expect to be cleaning a lot of trash.

Monitoring CCTV cameras will be a big part of a South Africa Security Guard’s job. This will be on a continuous basis with follow ups on issues seen.

When it comes to security sites in the service industry, South Africa Security Guards will have to assist customers in various non-security ways. This can be giving them directions or carrying items for them. Furthermore, South Africa Security Guards will often be expected to be friendly, outgoing, and talkative with customers in their security sites.

A constant security issue for South Africa security sites with customers will be smoking, alcohol consumption, and narcotics. South Africa Security Guards will often be making sure people aren’t smoking in non-smoking areas, consuming alcohol, or narcotics. For the latter, a South Africa Security Guard will usually report the issue to local police.

If the South Africa security site is a residence, responding to noise complaints will be a big part of the job.

Of course, catching shoplifters will be a constant for a South Africa Security Guard in a site with customers.

South Africa Security Guards Work at Security Gates

South Africa Security Guards will patrol parking areas to make sure vehicles are registered at that security site.

Every person entering through the security gate will produce valid photo ID to the South Africa Security Guard. The Guard will determine if the individual may pass.

During medical emergencies, the South Africa Security Guard will direct traffic to allow easy access for South Africa EMS vehicles.

South Africa Security Guards Deal with Medical Issues

Emergencies at a South Africa security site can happen at any time, day or night. On going communication will be key for all South Africa Security Guards involved to get through the emergency with the best possible outcome.

South Africa EMS/ ambulances will often be called by South Africa Security Guards.

The South Africa Security Guard that places the 911 call will relay info regarding who, what, where, why, and when.

South Africa Security Supervisors will usually take lead on these incidents and direct other South Africa Guards to specific tasks to perform during the emergency.

South Africa Security Guards will always remain calm and professional. Furthermore, they will assist however they can.

About the Author

SA guard

Peter Sandru is an Instructor & Co-Founder of NDIL with over 15 years working in security. Peter has spent more than a decade conducting security operations throughout the world, primarily for corporations, law firms, and government agencies. Peter has assisted in the creation of numerous security training programs in various capacities.


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