Foremost Security – Patrolling Through the Years
The 10th Anniversary of Foremost Security has given me cause to think about how the security industry has changed over the years and what the future may have in store.
Of course, this personal journey down memory lane comes at a time when my industry, and many others, are facing what is widely recognised to be the biggest challenge of recent history…
Coronavirus has led to tragic loss of life and has shaken society to the core. Even those of us lucky enough to have escaped without suffering ill health – or losing family, friends and colleagues -have had to adapt to some major changes. Within our sector we are battling with the availability of personnel, the stability (and longer term future) of many clients and the rapidly developing changes to regulations being issued by the government as they manage the situation.
Thankfully, Foremost, entered this crisis in very good shape and we have maintained much of our existing business – in fact, the nature of our services has seen us gain new work as a result of premises being unmanned and potentially vulnerable – but even this does not mean we can be complacent about the road ahead.
So, with the exception of the current major pandemic, what have been the most significant changes I have seen within security in my 20 plus years of working in the sector? I can think of three main areas which have had the greatest impact.
The first of these is the minimum wage.
It’s introduction in 1999 at last saw employees receiving a decent hourly rate for their work and this probably had one of the biggest effects on how guards were treated and how their value was recognised. The cost to business was huge, but I personally regard the change as being something very positive for both employees and employers.
Then comes licensing of our industry by the SIA.
Although regulation had been rumoured for a few years before, licensing by the Authority was here by 2004. Whilst our company was already very well prepared for compliance, with ISO9001 in place in advance, we benefitted most from the resulting removal of unscrupulous companies who tarnished the reputation of our trade.
Finally, it would be wrong not to acknowledge the effect technology has had.
There was a time when the office PC basically held customer details and generated invoices, but now we harness technology to help our business flourish. With tablets making our in-field staff so much more efficient and cloud-based systems allowing us to share information effortlessly and streamline processes, we fully recognise the benefit to be gained from embracing every new technological advance.
2020 will be significant for Foremost for many reasons
Over and above it being our 10th Anniversary. I, for one, intend to remain positive and focussed as I know that our secure foundations and our strong company culture will see us through whatever is thrown our way. In the past we have handled our fair share of challenges and our resilience has grown as a result. Our greatest strength now is that we are in a position to support our existing clients, and help many new ones, to secure their empty premises and provide valuable reassurance whilst they themselves regroup and adapt.
Out of everything – we’re still daring to up our game during COVID-19!
Stay Safe all!