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Venue security expert urges better understanding of security management

Venue security expert urges better understanding of security management
January 22, 2014

The cancellation of the Wet'n'Wild Sydney's New Year's Eve event and the subsequent media attention on the attraction's security management and staff, and the event promoter highlight a number of issues including a lack of understanding that security is a management discipline with its own body of knowledge, research and education, according to Don Williams, a recognised leader in venue security management and analysis.

Williams believes that managers of attractions, facilities and venues should apply the same standards to security advisers (in-house or contracted) as they would for any other managerial adviser: demanding relevant qualifications and experience; internationally recognised certifications such as the Certified Protection Professional (CPP) or Physical Security Professional (PSP) designations; a demonstrated understanding of the venue's business drivers and image; the ability to communicate how they will support the venue's reputation and functions;, an understanding of related disciplines such as business continuity planning (BCP); media management; workplace health and safety and emergency management.

Williams, who is passionate about the development and recognition of the security management profession, explains "to many the term 'security consultant' still conjures images of someone trying to sell guards, guns and gates, a perception that has been hard to break.

"Yet there is a definable and distinct difference between the security industry and the security profession.

"The industry, those who provide physical protective equipment and services, is an important element supporting corporate and government security.

"The profession offers security expertise and guidance to management.

"Managers (need to) differentiate between security consultants using the same criteria they do for any other selection: qualifications, accreditation, acceptance by professional bodies and relevant experience."

Williams highlights that guidance can be obtained from professional associations such as the local chapter of ASIS International or by check the register of security professionals at the linking below.

With over 27 years experience in security consulting, Don Williams is a recognised leader in the field of security management and analysis having written over 70 articles, chapters and other publications on security, risk and emergency management.

A Registered Security Professional, Williams has particular expertise in bomb incident security and safety, having been the Bomb Risk Manager for the 2000 Sydney Olympic and Paralympic Games and is the author of 'Bomb Incident The Manager's Guide'. He is also a Registered Security Professional.

The Certified Protection Professional (CPP) credential provides demonstrable proof of knowledge and management skills in eight key domains of security.

The Physical Security Professional (PSP) designation is for those with expertise in conducting threat surveys; designing integrated security systems that include equipment, procedures, and people; or installing, operating, and maintaining such systems.

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