The Security Institute (SyI) has launched a new initiative to inspire and attract young people to consider a career within the security industry.
The “Next Generation” Security programme is backed by an ambitious 10-year plan designed to change perceptions about the security industry and to showcase the career opportunities that exist to 13 – 17 years who are considering their career options.
Next Generation has already received extensive industry backing with 50 businesses and organisations stepping up to offer work experience programmes and lend their support to the initiative. Baroness Ruth Henig of Lancaster CBE CSyI, President of the Security Institute is also lending her support.
The Security Institute’s 10-year plan to improve perceptions of the industry will seek to address the longer term issues such as the gender pay gap, improving diversity in the profession and specifically look at promoting lifelong learning, professional development and security qualifications.
“We must promote to young people the key role security plays in our society,” said Rick Mounfield CSyP FSyI, Chief Executive of the Security Institute. “The security profession is one of the most ‘job secure’ lines of employment on offer to young people today, but unfortunately the perception of security is poor, often fixated on the image of a security officer in a retail setting. The reality is very different. Our industry offers a range of rewarding career paths beyond simple security guarding, it is a professional career of choice with a clear pathway to leadership.
“Since April this year we have been garnering support from across the security disciplines to provide an opportunity to showcase the industry’s diverse portfolio of jobs that will cater for STEM capable and the less academic teenagers that would thrive in a team supporting the Police and wider security function. With the help of our private sector and public industry partners we are setting out to change this and build a better reputation as well as increase understanding about what is on offer.”
Paul Barnard MSyI, Director of the Security Institute and of Ward Security, who has been a driving force behind the initiative, said: “There is a real need for the security industry to address the reasons why we are not attracting bright young people and to change perceptions that it does offer both an interesting and life long career choice.
“Having had a successful career both in the City of London Police and now in the security industry I know first-hand how rewarding it can be as well as the importance of the convergence of the security industry with the national security strategy. The security industry is crucial for the ongoing defence and security of our nation and it is important we take action now to address the recruitment issues and to attract the calibre of people we need to help us protect our society over the long term.”
The SyI will begin its roll out of the Next Generation initiative at the International Security Expo in November where it has organised to host a group of 50 secondary school age children including Volunteer Police Cadets, for a guided tour of the show with the aim of demonstrating all the disciplines and diversity that the security sector can offer.
It will also match these children with three day work experience placements hosted by its business partners in their local area.
The SyI will replicate this activity at the Security & Counter Terrorism Expo in April 2019 as well as IFSEC in June 2019.