What Every Security Guard Needs to Know About COVID-19

Since March, the country has been experiencing an upheaval of daily life due to the outbreak of the coronavirus. The “new normal” for many cities throughout the nation was defined by shuttered businesses, stay-at-homes orders, rising unemployment rates and general uncertainty as to what else the pandemic would bring.

Even as some places begin to see things return to a semblance of normalcy, health and safety protocols are constantly changing as the number of cases ebb and flow from week to week. Despite the ambiguity, there is one thing that remains constant – the need for security. Security professionals are being called upon more now than ever before to protect people and property. New security concerns are emerging as businesses begin to reopen under strict health and safety guidelines. Social distancing protocols must be enforced unlike ever before.

With the increased need for COVID-19 security guard services, there comes an even greater challenge for security officers to do their jobs while staying safe amidst the pandemic. If you are a security guard, it is in your best interest to understand as much as you can about staying safe during the coronavirus pandemic.

Why are security guards essential during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Retail establishments, healthcare facilities, corporate business parks, restaurants and many other businesses are dealing with different security concerns than in the past due to the pandemic. Many business owners and staff members struggle to properly enforce the social distancing procedures while maintaining the daily operations of their businesses. Some businesses have experienced outbursts and violence from irate customers who refuse to follow safety protocols. Still others have closed their doors and worry about looters, thieves and vandals threatening their vacant properties.

In the current state of the country, professionally trained security guards are the best way to deter crime and ensure that your business remains vigilant about enforcing health and safety protocols. Guards have specialized knowledge and skills that enable them to identify suspicious behavior, interact appropriately with the public and enforce rules in a fair yet firm manner. To be even more effective, security guards should be aware of advanced recommendations for managing the virus while working for a client and with members of the public.   

How can security guards protect themselves and others?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have outlined specific guidelines for protecting yourself and others from contracting and spreading COVID-19. In addition to following the basic guidelines, security guards should take additional steps to safeguard themselves and the people they are hired to protect.

Maintain all basic health and safety protocols.

To minimize your risk and reduce the chances of spreading the virus to others, security guards must take fundamental precautions such as maintaining a distance of six feet from other people as much as possible, washing hands frequently, using hand and surface sanitizers and avoiding touching your face. In addition to taking these precautions themselves, security guards should enforce any other basic protocols on behalf of their clients. The reality is that security guards will have to engage with the public in order to fulfill their functions. Taking the necessary precautions is just one way to prevent the spread of the virus.

Use personal protection equipment consistently.

If you’ve traveled in an airplane, you know that in the event of an emergency you should secure your oxygen mask before assisting others with their masks. The same concept applies to COVID-19 protection when dealing with the public. While on duty, guards should wear the necessary PPE such as masks, eye covers and gloves. Request these items from your client. If the client does not provide the appropriate PPE, procure them on your own. Protecting yourself will allow you to better protect others.

Recognize the symptoms of COVID-19.

Security guards have ample interaction with the public. During the pandemic, security guards should take the time to learn the signs and symptoms of the virus. By being able to identify a potentially infected person, security guards can take the necessary precautions, deny them access to the premises or report the risk to your customer. Signs of the coronavirus can include cough, body aches, sore throat, difficulty breathing and fever.

Report exposure and take the appropriate measures.

As with any safety or security threat, guards should understand the proper channels for reporting potential exposure to COVID-19. Document the incident and the response procedures taken. By carefully reporting the incident, guards can help to stop the spread of the virus before it gets out of control. It can also help the customer be proactive about communicating the potential exposure to their customers and staff members.

Security guards have been essential during the coronavirus pandemic. While they continue to do their jobs, guards must be extra vigilant about following health and safety protocols. By following the suggestions above, security guards can significantly reduce their personal risk and the risk to others.

When you need security personnel who aim higher

Call Off Duty Officers, Inc. to find out how we can serve your business.

Off Duty Officers, Inc. provides armed and unarmed, off duty law enforcement and security personnel for both short- and long-term assignments. Contact us for an instant

Our experience means your safety.

Private Security Guard Services During COVID-19 Pandemic

The last few months have been a whirlwind for many business owners across the United States. From forced closures and limited openings to mask orders and other social distancing regulations, many businesses have had to shut their doors permanently or completely change the way they do business. 

For those who are still operating in some capacity, the new and ever-changing safety rules have put a lot of pressure on business owners and managers. They are being tasked with developing appropriate safety and sanitation protocols for their employees and customers that are in compliance with local regulations. If they are unsuccessful, they risk fines or business closures. Plus, they need to enforce the social distancing protocols which can put a strain on businesses, many of which are operating with minimal staff to begin with. 

To alleviate some of this stress, businesses of all sizes are turning to security guard companies to help them navigate these challenging times. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to escalate in recent weeks, there has been an increased reliance on private security guard companies to provide security and support. There are a number of vital jobs that a security guard can perform to keep you and your business safe, compliant and open for business.  Read on to learn about how private security guards can contribute to your peace of mind during the pandemic. 

Private Security Guard Services During COVID-19 Pandemic

Maintain social distancing and health protocols. 

Local governments have begun instituting their own social distancing protocols for both essential and non-essential businesses and operations. These include maintaining 6 feet of distance, limiting the number of people in a space at one time and wearing a mask or face covering. Enforcing these protocols has been left up to the businesses and their employees; however, it can be a challenge to ask your staff to do their jobs, monitor customers and apply the regulations all at the same time. 

We have seen a number of news reports that show customers who refuse to comply with the rules, especially those related to wearing masks. Staff members have been accosted by irate customers which can cause a threat to the safety of all inside the business and tarnish the business’s reputation.

Security guards can eliminate the need to involve your employees in enforcement of the safety and health protocols. Guards allow your staff to focus on business, rather than confronting possibly hostile customers. Uniformed guards administer the rules in a professional and respectful manner, limiting the risk of an unsafe or dangerous interaction. 

Secure and protect closed businesses and buildings.

Even though some establishments have opened their doors, there are still many buildings that are closed and will be for the foreseeable future. Owners of these properties still need to protect the premises from potential vandals, thieves and squatters who might want to take advantage of the vacancy. Security guards provide mobile patrols to monitor the property for suspicious behavior and report a crime to the proper authorities. Patrols can be both scheduled and random to give your business the best protection. In addition to patrols, guards can also post at your entry areas to ensure that only those who are authorized are on the property during its closure. 

Security Guards for Small and Medium Sized Businesses 

If you own or manage a business, you are surely facing a great deal of uncertainty due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It seems that the situation changes almost daily, making it difficult for business owners to keep up with the demands of operating a business and maintaining safety and health protocols. Now more than ever, private security guards are a vital asset to owners and managers who want to ensure that their employees and customers are safe and that their businesses remain open and operational. 

Are you considering hiring security guards for your business? Are you unsure if it is the right choice for you? Contact Off Duty Officers today to talk with one of our security specialists about your security needs during the pandemic. 

Every day, our team works with people just like you who are concerned about operating their businesses during these uncertain times. A free consultation with our specialists will help you determine the level of security you need to get the results that you want. We have helped hundreds of small and medium sized businesses secure their sites by providing highly trained temporary and permanent, armed and unarmed guards. Call today to learn more about our custom security guard services. 

When you need security personnel who aim higher

Call Off Duty Officers, Inc. to find out how we can serve your business.

Off Duty Officers, Inc. provides armed and unarmed, off duty law enforcement and security personnel for both short- and long-term assignments. Contact us for an instant

Our experience means your safety.

Lesser Known Benefits of Hiring Security Guards for Your Business

When your company chooses to hire a team of guards to protect your business, you are getting much more than security. Studies have shown that the presence of security guards in a workplace can have a positive impact on employee productivity, morale and retention. Smart business owners understand that these benefits are key to keeping a business running successfully. 

If you aren’t working with a professional security guard company to protect your business, it may be time to consider it. In this article, we want to share some of the reasons why security guards can be a valuable asset to business owners, including some of the lesser-known reasons that often go overlooked. 

When you are considering adding security to your business operations, we suggest contacting a reputable security guard company in your area. An experienced company can help you understand your security threats, assess your needs and offer you comprehensive solutions that will meet your requirements. By consulting with a company with a good reputation, you can feel confident that you are getting the level of security that you need.

Primary Benefits of Hiring Security Guards 

Security guards are one of the best ways to protect a business, retail center, business park, residential community and construction site from common security threats such as theft, vandalism, violence and unauthorized access. Companies have a variety of options when it comes to security, so they have the flexibility to choose the level that best meets their needs. From temporary or permanent assignments to armed or unarmed guards, businesses can design custom solutions depending on the threats they face. 

Some of the primary benefits of hiring security guards for your business include: 

Act as a deterrence to crime.

Common criminals likely won’t attempt a theft or attack at a property that is manned by professional security guards. The risk of being caught is too high for most to even make an attempt. Uniformed guards demonstrate to would-be criminals that you take security seriously. 

Provide customer service.

Security guards are there to provide security, but they also act as a representation of your business. They can provide some basic customer services such as directing guests, escorting law enforcement and notifying management of safety issues. 

Monitor entry points.

For commercial buildings, security guards can be a valuable asset in monitoring who enters and exits the property. They can be instrumental in checking identification and credentials and maintaining guest logs to be sure that only authorized persons are on the property.  

Enforce property rules and regulations.

As a part of your security team, security guards can help you enforce property rules and regulations. They can act as your “eyes” when you are not on the premises or when you are busy handling your business operations. 

Ensure quick response time to issues.

If an issue were to occur, business owners can have peace of mind knowing that they have a dedicated team who can respond to and handle the issue until the police arrive on the scene. 

Additional Benefits of Having Security Guards on Site 

Employees may not feel safe at work for a variety of reasons:

  • Office located in a dangerous or crime-ridden area
  • Performing work that is the target of protestors or other antagonists 
  • Property that is open to the public
  • High-profile CEO or leadership team that has been media attention
  • Recent occurrence of crime on the property 

No matter the reason, it is in the best interest of employers to take the safety and security of their employees very seriously. It is well-known that employees who feel safe and valued at work are more likely to have higher morale. Just some of the unseen benefits that hiring security guards can offer employers include a boost in: 

Morale: Feeling unsafe at work can have serious negative impacts on the morale of employees. When an employee worries about walking to and from the parking lot or has concerns about who is entering or exiting the building, their fear and anxiety can change the way they feel about their work. Unhappy employees with low morale can completely change the culture of your workplace and make it an unpleasant place to be. 

Productivity: When employees feel safe at work, they can free their minds of any anxiety that comes with worrying about their security at the workplace. Security guards on site can give employees peace of mind so they can focus on their work. Employees won’t have to worry about unauthorized people entering the property. They can feel confident that there is a dedicated guard who is looking out for them throughout the day. 

Off Duty Officers – Top Rated Security Guards Nationwide  

If you need an experienced and professional security guard company to provide peace of mind for yourself and your employees, contact Off Duty Officers today. We provide armed and unarmed guards to businesses across the country who are looking for highly-trained and reliable security guards. 

When you need security personnel who aim higher

Call Off Duty Officers, Inc. to find out how we can serve your business.

Off Duty Officers, Inc. provides armed and unarmed, off duty law enforcement and security personnel for both short- and long-term assignments. Contact us for an instant

Our experience means your safety.

Summer Travel Considerations During the Covid-19 Pandemic

Since March, many Americans have been staying at home and limiting their outings to help curb the spread of Covid-19. The pandemic has changed the way we live, work and socialize; and, it seems that the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic is not about to end anytime soon. As more states began to loosen their stay at home restrictions and reopen their economies, we have seen spikes in numbers of infections across the country. 

Despite this concerning news and the doubt that comes with it, many Americans are still feeling the urge to get away this summer. Road trips may have replaced international adventures and small family gatherings may have replaced large family reunions, but many people are finding that they need to recharge outside of their homes. 

The question on the minds of many this summer is how to travel safely during a pandemic. If you feel the pull to travel, it is critical that you take your safety and that of others into consideration. Aside from following state and federal guidelines regarding the pandemic, travel and social interaction, there are things you can do to help reduce your chances of getting sick and increase your chances of traveling safely. 

And if you are still on the fence, these questions may help you decide what choice is right for you and your family. 

3 Considerations for Traveling this Summer 

In times of uncertainty, it is important that you plan ahead. Whether you have decided to make a go of it or if you are still not sure if travelling is the right decision for you, taking these 3 points into consideration will help you make a more informed choice. 

Decide where you will go (and how you will get there).

While you may have a destination in mind, do your research before committing to a location. Find out if that area is experiencing higher than normal infection rates by checking a Covid-19 tracker and reviewing the state’s website. Also consider that many attractions are closed or limited in their availability, including national parks and amusement parks. Be sure to stay aware of the safety rules for that area, being mindful of the fact that they may change. 

Once you decide where you will travel to, you must consider how you will get there. Although airlines are taking extra precautions such as temperature checks before boarding and mandatory masks, many people are still weary of airline travel. Because of this, many families are choosing a good, old-fashioned road trip instead of a flight. Road trippers likely have more control over their environments and those they interact with.

If you do choose a road trip this summer, take these points into consideration: 

  1. Pack plenty of personal protective gear such as gloves, masks, hand sanitizer, soap and disinfecting wipes. Bringing enough of these valuable supplies will help you avoid unnecessary trips to the store or being left exposed. 
  2. Prevent the need to stop more than required by bringing along ample snacks and beverages. If you do need to stop for rations, choose a drive-through that requires less physical interaction. 
  3. Plan your route in advance so you can research the safety rules for the states and cities you will be driving through. 
  4. If you must stop for gas, restroom breaks or food, be sure to wipe down the pump and other surfaces you come into contact with. Wash your hands thoroughly and use hand sanitizer often. 

Choose your accommodations carefully. 

Once you know where you are going and how you will get there, you must decide where you will sleep. Those with campers and RVs may decide to stay in their homes-on-wheels. Others must choose between a hotel or home rental service like AirBnB or VRBO. There are pros and cons to each option, so do your homework before choosing the right one for you. 

Hotels, especially chain hotels, are more likely to have strict cleaning and sanitation standards to prevent the spread of the virus in their facilities. However, hotels are often busy with people coming in and out from various parts of the country, making it more difficult to maintain social distance.  

Home rentals offer a greater ability for you to limit your interactions with others. You can also bring your own food so you know exactly where it came from and how it was prepared. On the flip side, not all home rentals have professional cleaning services who will adequately sanitize the property. Contact the home owner to learn more about their cleaning and sanitation policies before making your booking. 

Be flexible.  

This probably goes without saying, but you will need to be flexible. Rules and regulations are changing every day as rates of infection rise and fall in states throughout the country. Take into account the uncertainty that everyone is feeling and the current risks of travel. Understanding that things may not go as planned will help you curb your disappointment if the trip has to be postponed or cancelled. 

No matter what choices you make for your summer travel plans, being prepared and remaining flexible will help you make the most out of this changing and challenging situation.  

When you need security personnel who aim higher

Call Off Duty Officers, Inc. to find out how we can serve your business.

Off Duty Officers, Inc. provides armed and unarmed, off duty law enforcement and security personnel for both short- and long-term assignments. Contact us for an instant

Our experience means your safety.

How to Decide Between Armed and Unarmed Guards for Your Business

If you own a business, you have likely thought about hiring guards to protect your employees and property. Although the decision may seem straightforward, have you considered whether you need armed guards or unarmed guards? Many business owners are unsure which option is right for their business. 

While it might appear that armed guards are the better choice because of the added protection they provide, that is not always the case. In fact, unarmed guards can offer many businesses more than adequate protection while still being cost effective. To aid in making this important decision, we encourage customers to consider certain factors including level of threat, current vulnerabilities, security goals and budget. 

Read on to explore these considerations in more detail. If you are still unsure whether your business needs armed guards or unarmed guards, contact the security specialists at Off Duty Officers today. Our team can help you gain a better understanding of your security needs and suggest the right solutions for you. 

Armed Guards vs. Unarmed Guards: Which Should You Choose?

No matter which option you ultimately go with, the first step is doing a complete assessment of your business and your security risks. A professional security company can assist you with this if you do not have the time, knowledge or manpower to do it on your own. A thorough assessment can indicate what level of security you require and the types of services you need to cover your vulnerabilities. 

Unarmed Guards

Unarmed guards do not carry firearms, but may possess non-lethal weapons for protection. Non-lethal weapons may include pepper spray, batons or tasers. Businesses who hire unarmed guards typically face low to medium risk and are assigned at locations such as retail establishments and residential communities. They are effective in deterring theft, vandalism and responding to suspicious behavior, among many other things. Because they do not carry a firearm and therefore do not require liability insurance, they are less intimidating than an armed guard but still provide peace of mind to employees and customers. 

Unarmed guards might be the right choice for your business if: 

  • You operate in a relatively low-risk setting such as a religious establishment, park, community center, museum, retail or grocery store.
  • You care about providing a safe but intimidation-free environment for your employees, customers and guests. 
  • You have a smaller budget but still require security protection. 
  • You would benefit from services such as access control, customer assistance, mobile patrols, escorting employees after hours and monitoring for suspicious behavior and vehicles. 

Armed Guards

Armed guards are authorized to carry a deadly weapon. In order to carry a firearm, they are required to have specialized training and licensure. Because of these additional certifications, armed guards are generally more expensive than unarmed guards. Armed guards are usually assigned to customers with a higher risk of threat including banks or other businesses with valuable assets as well as businesses that operate in high-crime areas. The sight of a weapon on a guard can put people on edge or give the perception that your business is unsafe. As a business owner, you must consider how an armed guard would look to your employees, visitors and the general public. 

Armed guards might be the right choice for your business if: 

  • You handle or transport large quantities of money, expensive jewelry and equipment or other valuable merchandise. 
  • You operate popular events that draw very large crowds, VIPs and media attention. 
  • You understand the added costs of licensure and training and have the budget to pay more per hour for protection. 
  • Your require increased protection because you work in a high-crime neighborhood or operate during off-hours. 

Make the Right Choice for Your Business 

Choosing the right level of security can be a challenge. By taking a good look at the security threats that your business faces, you can get a better idea of your needs. 

If you need help making the right decision for your business, call the experts at Off Duty Officers. We have been trusted for over 25 years by businesses across all industries who need the best security guard services in the nation. Our team is proud to be the leading provider of highly-trained and experienced armed and unarmed security guards in the country. Work with us by calling our office today. 

When you need security personnel who aim higher

Call Off Duty Officers, Inc. to find out how we can serve your business.

Off Duty Officers, Inc. provides armed and unarmed, off duty law enforcement and security personnel for both short- and long-term assignments. Contact us for an instant

Our experience means your safety.