What Does A Security Guard Do?

Written by Holly Savage

1st April 2021

Security guards are often some of the most critical staff on-site at any given location. As they ensure that any location, whether it be a construction site or a retail business, is protected. And they can often be the difference between a company swimming or sinking. But what does a security guard do and how can their duties help them to protect a business?

We’ll be discussing this and more such as what are the duties of a security guard, what private security guards can do, and the different areas security guards work.

What Is A Security Guard?

Before we begin discussing the different duties of a security guard, let’s first clarify what a security officer is. A security guard is someone who is licensed by the SIA and is hired by businesses to carry out a variety of security-related activities.

There are many benefits of having a security guard, and guards will be hired by companies to protect either a business, people, or valuables. Guards may have to do patrols and inspect property against fire, theft, vandalism, terrorism, and any other illegal activity. The main reason people hire security guards is to reduce crime.

What Is The Main Role Of A Security Officer?

Security officers will have many responsibilities and roles to undertake. The main role of a security guard will be to provide protection to people, buildings, businesses, and valuables. Guards are able to do this by supplying properties with a strong visible security presence, and this presence instantly suggests to criminals that a site is well protected.

what does a security officer do

What Does A Security Guard Do?

As well as providing businesses with a strong security presence, security officers will have many other daily tasks. We’ve listed some of the most common security guard duties and responsibilities.

Control Access For Employees, Visitors, And Outside Contractors

Security guards are responsible for controlling who enters and exits the premises that they are guarding. Sometimes they might need to keep a record of who is entering and exiting the premises, when they entered and how long they stayed. This is usually recorded in a logbook supplied by the employer.

Role of a security guard

Protect And Enforce Laws On An Employer’s Property

When you are a security guard you are responsible for protecting the people and items on the employer’s property but also stopping any unlawful activity like criminal damage and theft. When a security guard sees any unlawful activity, they need to report it to the police and ensure that all evidence is preserved at the scene of the crime.

what do security officers do

Monitor Alarms And Closed-Circuit TV Camera

Monitoring alarms and CCTV is a crucial role in a security guard’s job. As guards will monitor alarms or CCTV to check for any suspicious activity. Security officers who are monitoring CCTV footage may be asked to watch footage from multiple areas within a client’s property. The guard will need to have good concentration skills and be well-rested if this is a late-night shift.

responsibility of a security guard

Responding To Emergencies

To ensure proper response in case of an emergency, security guards should carry out regular drills. During the drills, the security guard should let everyone know what is expected from them. They should also be responsible for contacting the emergency services and evacuating the area in the actual event of something serious happening.

security guard tasks

Write Daily Reports

In some jobs, a security guard may be expected to write daily reports. The security guard should be reporting about their daily activities and irregularities. This includes things such as equipment or property damage, theft, the presence of unauthorised persons, and unusual occurrences.

what is security work

Answering Phone Calls

A security guard may be the only person at an employee’s premises late at night. This means they are responsible for any phone calls and should act as a pseudo receptionist. They should also check that the heating and other electrical equipment aren’t being left on overnight.

what is the main role of a security officer

Preventing Criminal Acts

Having great observation skills is a required qualification to have in any security officer job. Security guards will use these observation skills to help them prevent criminal activity, as they will often monitor CCTV, conduct surveillance, perform safety audits of the facility, and investigate all suspicious circumstances. Security guards also act as a visual deterrent against thieves and other criminals.

common tasks for security guards

Assisting the Public

Working with the public is also part of security officer duties. Guards will often greet people and identify visitors, give directions, redirect individuals who are present in an unauthorised area, such as backstage at a concert, and answer any questions from people in a polite and friendly manner. Another way that guards can help assist the public is on a college campus, as security officers will give presentations to students on personal safety and how to protect their belongings from wannabe thieves.

what is security guard duty and responsibility

What Do Security Do All Day?

A common question asked about security guards is what do they do all day? And well, guards will have many daily tasks to complete, but their main daily responsibility will be to provide ultimate protection to the business that has hired them. Security personnel will do this by:


  • Keeping a watchful eye out for criminals. This task can be done by guards using CCTV equipment like cameras to monitor different areas of a business or by them completing regular patrols around a building or site.
  • By supplying businesses with a physical security presence. This physical security presence turns guards into a strong visual deterrent, and it instantly showcases to thieves that the business has good security in place.
  • By ensuring that a business is protected from any potential hazard. Guards will make sure that businesses are protected from any security risk. They will complete this task daily by conducting risk assessments or by completing regular patrols.
what are the duties of a security guard

Where Do Security Officers Work?

As we mentioned above, security officers will have a wide range of security guard job duties. However, most of these duties will often depend on the area that a security officer is working in. We’ve listed some of the most popular areas guards will work in and their most common tasks.


  • In retail security, security officers ensure individuals, documents, products, money, and hardware are kept secure and protected. They may work with retail store detectives to prevent any criminal activity by customers or staff.
  • In places of business, such as offices, banks, hotels, and hospitals, security guards keep everything under control and ensure the association’s clients, staff, and property are sufficiently protected.
  • In museums or art galleries, guards may be tasked with monitoring and ensuring the safety and protection of prized art pieces. This would be done by monitoring guests, checking for suspicious items, and surveying areas and safety mechanisms for any potential tampering.
  • While security officers who work in factory security, government buildings, and military bases, security officers protect data and items and are tasked with checking the credentials of individuals and vehicles entering and leaving the premises.
  • At colleges, in parks, and at sports arenas, security guards maintain crowd control, regulate parking and seating, and direct traffic.
  • At bars and dance clubs, security officers (or bouncers) prevent underage individuals from entering, gather entrance fees at the entryway, and keep everything under control among customers.
  • Guards who function as transportation security screeners ensure individuals, transportation gear, and cargo at air terminals, train stations, and other transportation offices remain accounted for and well protected.
  • Security guards may be hired as a bodyguard to help protect celebrities. These guards will often work closely with their clients and may have tasks such as driving them to different places and patrolling different events before their clients arrive.
  • Security guards who work as gaming surveillance officials do the greater part of their work in club observation rooms, utilizing sound and video hardware to scan for any potentially dangerous situations.

What Does A Private Security Guard Do?

Private security guards are typically guards who are from a security firm with their own security department, and they are often hired by businesses to provide protection. Private security guards will have a wide range of different tasks and their duties are quite similar to normal security officers.

Some of the most common duties that private security officers have are:

  • Acting as a visual deterrent against thieves.
  • Conducting regular patrols around a building or site.
  • Using CCTV monitoring equipment to review different areas of a property.
what does a security guard do

What Does A Security Guard Supervisor Do?

Security supervisors are a higher job position within the security industry. And like guards, they will have the daily task of providing protection to a business or client. They will also have extra responsibilities such as helping to manage a security team. Some of the most common duties of a security guard supervisor are:


  • Ensuring employees have the correct SIA licences.
  • Conducting security visits to buildings or sites.
  • Supervising and monitoring a security team.
  • Delivering specific details and assignments to new security guards.
  • Completing incident reports.
  • Monitoring equipment distribution and usage.

So, What Does A Security Guard Do?

Overall, security guards will complete a wide range of different duties for business, and these tasks will often depend on the type of business that a guard is working for.

If you’re interested in keeping up to date with all the latest security guard news, why not check out our blog? Where you can find articles about different types of security guard services and how to become a security guard.

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