Businesses must recognize that thefts, crimes, and emergencies can occur on the premises. Some stores, such as retail stores, convenience stores, and even car washes, often prove to be the main targets for criminals and petty thieves because they are usually easier businesses to burglarize. Security guards are a deterrent in preventing crime, maintaining security, and helping employees and staff during emergencies. Many car washes have no onsite employees, with customers helping themselves using coin-op systems or auto pay stations. Security guards are beneficial at these locations because they can provide an authoritative presence to help prevent crime. Following are nine ways your car wash can benefit from having a security guard onsite:
Provide Security and Safety
Having a professional security guard at your business can provide peace of mind to the business owner, customers, and employees. Employees working in high-risk areas are more productive and easier to keep when they aren’t worried about safety. By providing security guards you are telling your customers that you are concerned for their safety and willing to take the steps needed to ensure they remain safe. This is particularly important for unmanned car washes because they can be a prime target for criminals.
Prevention of Crime
The presence of a security guard at your car wash is a great deterrent to crime. Criminals will think twice about burglarizing a business that has uniformed protection. Professional security guards are trained to look for suspicious activity. Guards can assess situations and react to security breaches. A security guard is also a greater visual deterrent than a camera or digital security system. Having a guard walking your property sends a message to potential thieves that you are serious about protecting your business.
Handling Crimes and Criminals
Professional security guards receive different levels of training when it comes to an active response to a crime. Some guards may simply act as a witness and contact law enforcement. Others may be able to detain suspects. The business owner decides whether they want to have an armed or unarmed guard protect their property. They also need to discuss with the security firm’s management team the procedures for handling a suspect. Hiring a trained and state-licensed guard from a security company can ensure that the guard is capable and sensible when facing criminal activity.
Minimize Response Times
A professional security guard has the training needed to react quickly and responsibly when a crime occurs. Security guards can apprehend criminals, using varying nonviolent de-escalation tactics. They can also use an appropriate amount of physical force when necessary and have the skills to detain them until the authorities arrive. Security guards are also trained on the steps to take in case of a medical or fire emergency. Their training allows them to act quickly to get people to safety or protect customers and employees if needed.
During an emergency, whether due to the occurrence of a crime, fire, or medical event, the presence of a security guard can help reduce panic and maintain order until law enforcement or EMTs arrive and can take over the situation. Keeping people calm in an emergency is essential for their safety and professional guards have the training necessary to keep order in difficult situations.
Monitoring the Business
Not all security guards spend their entire time at your business patrolling the perimeter. Hiring security professionals to monitor cameras, restrict access to an area, and aid customers when needed is also useful. A security guard may have certain goals, such as looking for suspicious activity, keeping an eye on the building after hours, or opening and closing a business. These duties take many of the security responsibilities off the shoulders of the business owner and allow them to focus on their work. Security guards at a car wash facility without personnel can keep an eye out for suspicious activity allowing the customers to go about their business comfortably.
Restoring or maintaining order during an emergency needs to be part of any business security plan. Hiring a professional security firm means that you will receive trained guards who are knowledgeable and trained to execute safety plans. Guards trained in de-escalation tactics can help ease any tense situation that might occur between customers. For example, a verbal fight breaks out because a customer believes another person cut them off or is taking too long washing their car. A trained security guard can step in and help the customers work out their differences in a civil manner without any further escalation.
Help You Save Money
Hiring a security guard to protect your business will also help save you money in the long run. Instead of having to pay to replace equipment or fix damaged areas of the business, security guards can prevent this from happening in the first place. Security guards can help you with insurance claims by surveilling your business so that you have the right documentation needed to prove that you have taken all the proper steps with your claim.
Security guards can also be customer service representatives for your business. A guard may maintain the cashier’s desk meaning they will have a substantial amount of interaction with customers and employees. Security guards may help direct people to business representatives who can further assist them. When working with the public and your employees you want a professional who is courteous, kind, and represents themselves and your business well.
Hiring personable security guards lets you communicate that your business is professional and customer oriented.
When hiring a professional security firm to provide guards for your business make sure they have the proper licensing and training required under state and local regulations. By hiring a professionally trained guard to protect your business you can be sure that your property, customers, and employees are safe in the event an emergency takes place.
Bill Herzog is the director of operations at LionHeart Security Services, located in Tempe, AZ. Herzog spent more than 25 years in law enforcement before joining LionHeart. You can visit the company on the web at www.lionheartsecurityservices.com.