Part of a successful business comes from keeping your overhead costs low. Internet, office supplies, and rent are just a few of the things that benefit from price shopping. It’s no different when comparing security companies for hire. You will receive offers that range from low to high, and then it’s up to you to find the best fit.
It is always tempting to go with the lowest bidder and sometimes, they will be the best value. But when you consider the various offers, it will be good to keep in mind some of the things that budget security companies won’t tell you unless you ask.
1. Everyone has a license
In Hawaii, to be a legal security professional, you have to have a license. To earn one, people must take a state-mandated training course that lasts about 8 hours and covers a range of topics. Trainees learn about ethics, image, basic techniques, and how to report back to public authorities.
When an agency states that they provide licensed security guards for hire, it means that all of their guards have met the legal standards to secure the things that are important to you. The real difference is found in the additional training that personnel get from the agency itself. The basics are great, but just that: basic. You will get a much better security professional from an agency that makes a significant investment in ongoing training.
So please, ask about their agency-specific training.
2. They have constant employee turnover
Business owners all share the pain of trying to find good help. It’s no different in the security world. Working late hours, weekends and holidays takes a toll. But security has to be provided around the clock. It’s such a challenging situation that the national average for employee turnover amongst security agencies approaches 300%!
Budget agencies simply won’t provide a high enough wage and other benefits to keep people around. The revolving door means that they are constantly sending inexperienced people with low motivation to guard people and property.
Agencies that are willing to invest in their people through wages, benefits, and even charitable initiatives gain by being able to provide their clients with experienced security professionals. While this may translate to higher rates, it only takes one incident with an inexperienced guard to undo any savings you might have had with a budget option.
3. They are probably not local
Some of the budget companies for hire out there are extremely large, and they provide lower rates through the volume of work they acquire. In your locality, you may find that their presence is limited to small, regional offices. The manager of that office might be a transplant from somewhere else in the country, and not even know your area well.
Finding an agency locally will have advantages. You will likely have a direct line of people who can make decisions. Their employees and managers will be embedded in the community and understand the challenges a neighborhood may provide. Local workers and local management will offer a much more motivated and tailored approach to meeting your security needs.
4. They lack effective customer service
Budget agencies rely on services going smoothly, on their end to reduce costs. This means that if you are having challenges with your security service and need to talk to someone who can make a decision, you might be out of luck. Phone trees and low-level employees who are not empowered to fix your problems can cause delays and aggravation.
Look for agencies that have a direct line to people who can help you. It may be a manager or an owner, but you will want to ensure that whoever your point of contact within the agency is can fix problems if they come up. Your experience with the protection service of your choice will likely be smooth, but when time matters, the budget option will be less helpful.
5. Technology isn’t better than people
Technology is a good thing. Cameras, lights, and motion sensors all have their place. An over-reliance on those things may save money upfront but won’t be nearly as effective in finding the right mix of tech and people.
Having people on site provides benefits from deterrence to being able to react quickly. We wrote a blog about it, if you want to learn more.. Using people does cost more, but an agency that takes the time to understand what you need will also be able to suggest how to balance the two so you can get the best value.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with being budget-conscious. You just have to keep in mind that the cheapest isn’t always better. When you approach a security agency thinking “What is the best value for money that I can get”, that’s a different mindset.
To help you get into this value vs. cost approach, here are three great questions to work into your conversations with potential protection agencies.
1) What can you tell me about your company training program for your security personnel?
2) How invested in my community is your agency?
3) What percentage of your clients are my size and in my industry?
At KT Protection Services, we use our combined 60 years of experience within our ownership team to ensure we deliver great value to our clients. We do this through a dedication to a healthy work culture and investment in our people.
Through the KT Cares initiative, we give back to our community. Our employees receive competitive compensation and benefits. We also take great pride in our in-house training that supplements the basics given by the state.
If you’re looking for a security service in the Hawaiian Islands, come kick our tires. From a free no-hassle quote to a conversation with ownership, you choose how you want to talk to us. You may find that we are not the cheapest option, but we will be committed to providing you with great service and value.