G4S South Africa: Raising standards in security
Three hundred previously unemployed men and women are now putting into practice their training as potential security officers in a G4S scheme that’s set to raise industry standards in South Africa.
Launched earlier this year, the training programme aims to help hundreds of 20 to 35-year-olds achieve accredited security qualifications.
After three months spent in the classroom the group, one of the largest-ever intakes in the country’s security industry, has now been deployed across South Africa to put theory into practice.
After completing their three-month placements, the learners will then receive their qualifications – which are over and above what is normally required to work as a security officer in South Africa – and are free to begin work, whether for G4S or another security provider.
“A lot of young people in South Africa finish school with no clear idea of what they want to do,” explained Stan Chetty, National Learning and Development Manager.
“We were keen to give something back to the communities in which we operate by giving them the training and qualifications to prepare them for successful careers in the security industry.
“The benefit to the business is that this will help us develop a pool of trained and skilled security officers who are ready to be deployed.
“Quite often we sign new contracts that require a quick turnaround, and the training and vetting process can take a long time. So, through training programmes such as this, it will enable us to respond much quicker.
“But while we hope that many of those we trained will join us, it isn’t only about G4S – the qualifications they receive will help them market themselves anywhere in the industry.”
Among the areas covered by the training, which is provided in partnership with professional training company Ukwanda, are customer service, public relations, positive first impressions, communication skills, managing complaints, legal considerations and relevant legislation.
“We’ve learned a lot with this initial programme and we will certainly be looking to repeat it in the future,” Stan added.
“Ideally it will become an annual process. The numbers involved may vary, and will likely depend on the needs of the business at that time.”
Tian Taljaard, Operations Director, G4S Secure Solutions (SA) said: “It is so encouraging to see the enthusiasm of this young group of South Africans who are excited by the opportunity to become a part of the private security industry and part of the G4S family.
“This type of initiative is also good for business as it allows G4S to introduce new, well-trained personnel to our customers and to the broader industry.”