What does this mean for you as a buyer of Security Services?
The Private Security Industry Act 2001 requires the SIA to establish a “system of inspection for providers of security services, under which those organisations who satisfactorily meet the agreed standards may be registered as approved, and may advertise themselves as such”.
The objective of the SIA’s Approved Contractor scheme is to raise performance standards and to assist the private security industry in developing new opportunities. The scheme is voluntary and was developed in consultation with representatives from across the industry; it only covers those parts of the industry that are regulated by the SIA and the Private Security Industry Act 2001 (as amended). There is a single scheme, with sector-specific approval based on a relevant set of qualifying criteria.
Benefits of Using an Approved Contractor
Choosing an ACS accredited supplier for the provision of your contract security services will help you to meet your security obligations to your staff, shareholders and other stakeholders.
Approved contractors are demonstrably committed to customer service and the compulsory licensing of their staff. This means their customers can rest assured that every private security operative deployed on their premises will be working within the law (unless we have withdrawn the company’s authority to deploy staff whose licence applications are pending, which can be checked via the public Register of Approved Contractors).
The benefits of using an Approved Contractor are wide-ranging and briefly summarised below.
Continuity of Service
Suppliers of security services who are not Approved Contractors are only able to deploy staff that physically hold a valid SIA licence; to do otherwise is a criminal offence. Approved Contractors could be given special dispensation to deploy staff who have completed their training and are waiting for their SIA licence application to be processed. Approved Contractors will therefore be able to offer greater flexibility and operational effectiveness when supplying security services.
Best Practice and Continuity of Quality
You can be confident that the employment practices of the supplier have been extensively assessed in respect of quality and best practice. Should the Approved Contractor sub-contract, you can be assured that they will only do so to other SIA Approved Contractors, thereby maintaining the integrity of your security supply.
Clear Customer Focus and Increased Flexibility
You can expect effective customer-focused procedures in place to overcome any issues that arise in service delivery. The ACS Standard encourages service customisation, rather than ‘off-the-shelf’ packages. This will help ensure that the services delivered more closely reflect your precise requirements.
Leadership and Innovation
The ACS is a progressive quality initiative. It’s also a voluntary scheme. You can expect accredited providers to be highly responsive to change and swift to adopt new methods and best practices.
The Extended Police Family
The status of the ACS is recognised by the police and offers the potential for enhanced working relationships. The aim is to provide practical benefits through ‘joined-up’ police, business and community initiatives.