Security Guard Salary
Security Guards in the United States pull down an average of $10.81 per hour. While the company and experience level impact pay for this group, geographic location is the most influential factor. Making up 79 percent of those who took the survey, male Security Guards greatly outnumber their female counterparts. Health benefits are not enjoyed by everyone in this line of work, and more than half lack any coverage at all. Medical benefits are reported by approximately two in five and dental coverage is claimed by just under a third. Work is reasonably fulfilling for most Security Guards — the majority report average levels of job satisfaction. The data in this summary comes from the PayScale salary survey.
Job Description for Security Guard
Security guards provide low-level protection for companies and organizations which usually involves patrolling the premises, either by foot or in a company vehicle (of course, a valid driver’s license is required in order to drive company vehicles). Security guards patrol for suspicious or dangerous activity that might be detrimental to the safety of the facility or any people present. If a person at or in the facility is in violation of particular rules or policies, the guard must correct the situation.Read More...
Some security guards are expected to monitor the people who enter and exit the facility, and may be permitted to restrict access to individuals with clearance. They must always watch for suspicious activity which may lead to theft or violence on the premises; when a situation becomes unmanageable, they must use discretion to remove violators from the facility and call for backup, which may include the police department. Though security is the most important aspect of the job, it is also important to provide service in a polite and professional manner.
In some facilities, security guards also provide reception services to guests. Depending on the facility being monitored, the job may include highly stressful situations, so it is important to be able to work well under pressure. A high school diploma or equivalent is generally required for this position, and some employers may prefer those who have at least an associate’s degree. Many entry-level positions are available, as well.
Security Guard Tasks
- Respond to alarms and emergency situations.
- Make periodic tours to check for irregularities and to inspect protection devices and fire control equipment.
- Greet incoming guests and tenants, providing information regarding the site and surrounding area as requested by visitors.
- Guard and monitor premises to prevent theft, property destruction, violence or rules and safety violations.
- Perform fire prevention, safety and maintenance tasks and parking/traffic enforcement.
Security Guard Job Listings
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Popular Employer Salaries for Security Guard
Securitas Security Services Usa, Inc., G4S Security Services, Allied Barton Security Services Inc., Universal Protections Services, and US Security Associates, Inc. are all popular places to work. Although G4S Security Services offers the highest salaries (median pay is $26K), survey participants reported a rather limited pay range of $21K to $34K. Security Guards will also find cushy salaries at Guardsmark, Llc. (+$25K), Allied Barton Security Services Inc. (+$24K), and ABM Security Services, Inc. (+$22K).
Weiser Security Inc., FJC Security Services Inc., and US Security Associates, Inc. also rank near the bottom for pay, each handing out $20K-paychecks on average.
Pay by Experience Level for Security Guard
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Experience and pay tend to be weakly linked for Security Guards — those with more experience do not necessarily bring in higher earnings. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $23K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $25K on average — a distinctly larger sum. Security Guards claiming one to two decades of experience make an estimated median of $27K. In the end, the overall pattern seems to be that more experience generally corresponds to higher pay; a Security Guard with more than 20 years of experience can earn $29K on average.
Pay Difference by Location
For Security Guards, busy San Francisco offers a higher-than-average pay rate, 42 percent above the national average. Security Guards will also find cushy salaries in San Jose (+27 percent), Seattle (+18 percent), Las Vegas (+10 percent), and Denver (+6 percent). The smallest paychecks in the market, 13 percent south of the national average, can be found in Miami. Below-median salaries also turn up in Pittsburgh and Houston (11 percent lower).