Security Guards and Patrol Services

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Current Conditions, Industry Structure, How Firms Operate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 6,800 security firms in the US provide security guard, patrol, and related services, including personal and property protection. Security guards are a supplement to public law enforcement, and act as a deterrent to crime. The majority of industry revenue comes from securing buildings and parking facilities. Other services include crowd control and bodyguard services. In addition to guards, firms use electronic security systems or guard dogs to enhance protective services. Firms may provide consulting services, such as security system design or training.

High Cost Of Failure

The nature of the security business puts companies at risk for liability for personal injury, property damage, and financial losses.

Limited Pricing Flexibility

The security guard services industry’s struggle to maintain profitability is complicated by stubborn low growth in pricing.

Industry size & Structure

The average security guard and patrol services provider operates out of a single location, employs 111 workers, and generates $5 million annually.

    • The security guard and patrol services industry consists of about 6,800 firms that employ about 757,600 workers and generate about $35 billion annually.
    • The security guard and patrol services industry is concentrated at the top and fragmented at the bottom; the top 50 companies account for 64% of industry revenue.
    • Large companies include Securitas North America, Allied Universal Security, and G4S (formerly Wackenhut). Some large firms are foreign-owned or have international operations.
    • The industry includes large international companies, regional firms, franchises, and independent operators.
                                  Industry Forecast
                                  Security Guards and Patrol Services Industry Growth
                                  Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

                                  Recent Developments

                                  Oct 28, 2022 - Talent Shortage Lingers
                                  • The security industry has been hit with a talent shortage affecting its guarding services. Many factors have contributed to the lack of skilled guards. The pandemic caused human interactive companies to close temporarily along with access to education, testing and licensing facilities needed to create skilled applicants. Guarding is an employment option that can’t be done remotely and it’s adversarial by nature, which makes it unappealing as a career choice for many people. Technology based alternatives to physical guarding can help fill the gap. One example of this is converting manned security entrances to unmanned ones equipped with smart technology that deters unauthorized entry. Creatively combining technology and experienced workers can allow businesses to run efficiently, according to Security Today.
                                  • Technology is helpful in the security industry to attract and retain valuable employees. According to Security Magazine, access to tools and resources to keep employees organized and informed can enhance their satisfaction. Technology can elevate business operations by supporting data analytics to forecast security threats and automating payroll, scheduling, and company communication. Smart tech sensors, connected cameras and access control are also helpful to enable guards to perform their jobs at the highest level possible.
                                  • Security guard and patrol firms can improve their marketing, charge higher prices, and build their businesses by highlighting the quality of their staff and security experience. Length of time in business, use of background checks, and specialized training such as police or military service reflect the stability of the firm and the level of its employment standards. References from existing clients, along with proof of licensing and insurance, help to instill trust in the firm’s business practices.
                                  • Almost all retailers, regardless of size or location, have seen an uptick in shoplifting, including organized retail theft, according to Retail TouchPoints. Retail industry experts suggest pinpointing exactly why retail crime is rising is difficult, but possible contributing factors include rising inflation pushing people more people to commit theft, and supply chain issues that have driven up the value of certain goods and made them more lucrative for thieves. Security guards placed in high-profile locations within retail environments can serve as a strong deterrent for thieves seeking soft targets.
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