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Door Supervisor or Security Guard licence?

Ever since the SIA gave people a choice between the licences in 2005 this has been a question which has caused much discussion.


The simple fact is that anyone who holds a Door Supervisor licence can undertake any of the roles covered by a Security Guard licence. This is clearly shown on the SIA website in the ‘Licensing Integration’ section:


So what are the advantages of holding a Door Supervisor licence rather than a Security Guard licence, especially if you have no intention of working in a pub or club?


The short answer is that you will have greater job opportunities and be seen as more versatile by most potential employers. Consider the following:


  • A Door Supervisor licence is needed to work wherever alcohol is sold for consumption on the premises. For example, in
    • Hotels
    • Restaurants
    • Theatres
    • Cinemas
    • Casinos


  • A Door Supervisor licence means that you can work in Event Security. Namely at the many summer music festivals that take place throughout the UK. Listen to your favourite bands while you work! These shifts tend to be long and reasonably well paid.


  • As part of the Door Supervisor training course you will learn some Physical Intervention skills. These are equally useful to Security Guards (although not included within their SIA course) as they teach you ‘disengagement’ – how to legally and safely extract yourself from somebody else’s unwanted grip – and ‘escorting’ – how to lead a person out of premises without using painful or illegal techniques.


  • The respective training is remarkably similar. Both Security Guard and Door Supervisor courses include the modules ‘Working in the Private Security Industry’ and ‘Conflict Management’. Door Supervisors also learn Physical Intervention (see above).


  • The modules that differ are ‘Working as a Door Supervisor’ and ‘Working as a Security Officer’. However when compared side by side about 80% of the content shares the same principles.


  • Although you may not want to work as a Door Supervisor permanently, there can be times when the occasional night might provide some useful additional income. In particular there is usually a shortage of Door Supervisors around the Christmas/New Year period, when demand is high, and pay rates tend to be significantly higher than the rest of the year.


  • Circumstances change. What would you do if your income suddenly dropped and you needed a part-time job to get you through a difficult patch? With a Door Supervisor licence your opportunities would be far higher than if you just held a Security Guard licence.


  • The cost of a Door Supervisor licence is the same as for a Security Guard licence – currently £220.00.



So in conclusion, the answer must surely be that the Door Supervisor training and licence have many more benefits than would be gained by doing a Security Guard course and having a Security Guard licence!