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BSIA Apprentice Installer Awards salute the next generation of industry leaders

Four outstanding young apprentices from the UK’s private security sector have been presented with national awards in recognition of their academic and practical success in the field of electronic security installations.

Awarded by the British Security Industry Association (BSIA), the Trade Association representing the UK’s private security sector, the Apprentice Installer Awards serve to recognise the achievements of Level Two and Level Three apprentices involved in the installation of alarms, CCTV, access control or a combination of these systems.

They also represent the commitment of security companies and training bodies in providing young talent with the opportunity to succeed in the security world.

The following winners were selected from what was a strong selection of entries in 2014:

Overall Winner: Darrell Gilmour (Kings Security Systems)
19-year-old Darrell Gilmour is currently in his third year of studies. A passion for security runs in the family, with his father, uncle and aunt also employed within the sector.

Darrell was nominated for this award by New College, North Lanarkshire, where his methodical, conscientious workmanship has impressed his lecturers.

Darrell Gilmour (left) on stage with Tony Porter, the Surveillance Camera Commissioner

Darrell Gilmour (left) on stage with Tony Porter, the Surveillance Camera Commissioner

Working full-time at Kings Security Systems, Darrell has set the bar high for future apprentices. A spokesperson from the business commented: “Kings is always taking on new apprentices, and Darrell will be an ambassador for Scotland in providing a role model for the new recruits. He’s an asset to Kings and a valued apprentice to the business.”

Tom Parker: VSG
Tom Parker received a national award for turning his fascination for technology into a blossoming career, having already worked on large-scale installations for high-profile clients including Macquarie Bank, London South Bank University and Lloyds of London.

Selected to work alongside one of VSG’s leading technical engineers, 19-year-old Tom has already achieved the minimum level required to pass his college course and is currently undertaking additional modules while spending his spare time practising work on a range of products.

Nathan Sefton: Chubb Fire & Security
Nathan won his award for demonstrating a sound knowledge and understanding of the industry, and for his methodical, level-headed approach to problem-solving.

Already a point of contact for other engineers, Nathan excelled on a large-scale project where his documentation for over 30 sites was error-free and met strict deadlines.

Nathan, who is only 21, was selected to travel to Denmark in 2013 as part of Skills for Security’s Leonardo Project.

Aaron Noble: Kings Security
Aaron was selected for a national award following his nomination by Kings Security’s managing director Anthony King.

With an ambition to become lead engineer by his mid-30s, Aaron (who’s just 21) has already demonstrated an excellent understanding of theory and practical work. He has gained experience of running complex jobs on site and continually out-performs other apprentices of his age.

Career in the security sector

James Kelly, CEO of the BSIA, commented: “We are all well aware that in today’s challenging job market many young people may feel that a long term career is out of their reach. As such, the BSIA and its members fully support the development of apprenticeships which offer positions to young people who wish to gain practical skills and knowledge in the security industry, in turn allowing them to ultimately develop long-term careers in the sector.”

James Kelly: CEO at the BSIA

James Kelly: CEO at the BSIA

Kelly continued: “It’s always a pleasure to be able to recognise the outstanding talent displayed by our young apprentices, and I would like to congratulate all four of today’s winners on their achievements. They have all exhibited exceptional qualities throughout their apprenticeships, and no doubt have very bright futures ahead of them within our industry.”

This year, the Apprentice Installer Awards havee once again sponsored by Pyronix, whose chairman and CEO Julie Kenny CBE DL explained: “As the cost of university education has increased dramatically in the last few years, there has never been a better time for the security sector to appeal to the younger generation who want to work, develop a career and earn money.”

Kenny continued: “As an industry, we need to highlight the opportunities available and target keen young applicants prepared to influence our sector. Brought up in the ‘permanently connected age’, these apprentices have the user experience to push and assist with the transformation of technologies in our industry that customers will be demanding. We at Pyronix are delighted to be sponsoring the Apprentice Installer Awards as we believe their input will be invaluable to help installers drive and control customer-focused technologies across the intruder market within the next few years.”

*The BSIA would like to thank Pyronix for its kind sponsorship of these awards.

**For more information about the BSIA visit: http://www.bsia.co.uk

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New regulatory regime “helpful to businesses”, Security Regulation Alliance tells Government

In a letter to Government ministers, the Security Regulation Alliance has called for unanimous support of the proposed new regulatory regime for the private security industry, and urged them to consider the benefits of security regulation against the backdrop of the Government’s wider deregulatory agenda.

Writing to the Minister for Business and Enterprise and the Minister for Government Policy, Security Regulation Alliance chairman and BSIA chief executive James Kelly expressed the industry’s frustration with the continued delays in preparing the necessary legislative groundwork for the implementation of a new regulatory regime.

“Despite the recent announcement made by the Security Industry Authority (SIA) of the proposed timescales for the implementation of business licensing, there are still several factors yet to be clarified by Government on which the long-term success of the transition will heavily depend.”

Elaborating on this statement, Kelly continued: “First, the Government has yet to identify a suitable legislative vehicle through which suitable enforcement powers can be granted to the SIA. Also, the failure of Government to clarify the cost of the new regime is leaving many security companies in the dark when it comes to business forecasting for the coming years.”

James Kelly: CEO at the BSIA and chairman of the Security Regulation Alliance

James Kelly: CEO at the BSIA and chairman of the Security Regulation Alliance

Kelly explained: “The Security Regulation Alliance is concerned that the transition to a new regulatory regime is being delayed by a number of Government departments, namely the Treasury and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) who are expressing concerns about the cost to the taxpayer and the perceived contradiction against the Government’s deregulatory agenda. Our letter aims to provide reassurances that the cost of licensing has always been – and will continue to be – borne by industry, and that regulation has, in fact, had a positive influence on the security sector.”

Role of regulation in raising standards

The role of regulation in raising standards within the industry is a prime example of the positive effects of regulation, which the Security Regulation Alliance believes has improved public safety while providing industry practitioners with the credibility to support the police service when it comes to low-level crime and community policing.

Regulation has also played an important role in encouraging healthy competition throughout the industry, the letter claims. Prior to regulation, customers relied upon BSIA membership and larger company reputation to screen suppliers, making market entry harder for new competitors.

The Security Regulation Alliance believes that the total removal of formal regulation would reverse these benefits.

Overriding need for clarity

In the letter, Kelly writes: “The new regulatory regime will be good for all businesses, reduce cost and help build a private security industry that is fit to hold the public’s trust and support the police. However, this will only be the case if all phases of the new regulatory regime are completed with proportionate powers that allow robust enforcement to be continued. If, as seems possible, an incomplete process without primary legislation is enacted, it would be damaging as long as the uncertainty persisted.”

Representing the Security Regulation Alliance, the BSIA has maintained pressure on the Government for clarity through its programme of Parliamentary roundtable meetings and also by way of its attendance at bloth the Conservative and Labour Party Conferences earlier this month.

“We hope that our letter provides the necessary assurances to Government that regulation is actively supported by the industry,” concluded Kelly, “and helps to obtain at least some degree of clarity for the many businesses affected by the current climate of uncertainty.”

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