Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

On Your Marks for Security Work

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

On Your Marks for Security Work

Article excerpt

Byline: Niki Chesworth

[bar] HE biggest paid recruitment drive this century began today when G4S London opened the doors of its London 2012 Recruitment Centre. It now has the mammoth task of recruiting thousands of security staff required to deliver a safe and secure Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The 10,000 security staff vacancies -- around a tenth of the additional 100,000 personnel needed for London 2012 -- offer the opportunity of paid training, a qualification, paid employment and the chance to be part of an amazing and memorable event.

So what sort of candidates are G4S looking for? Mark Hamilton, of G4S Events, says: "There are no minimum qualifications and the vacancies are open to anyone over 18 with the right to work in the UK. Candidates should be good at dealing with people as they may be required to engage with spectators, officials and athletes."

PAID TRAINING AND A NEW SKILL Successful applicants will initially undertake security industry training, which is a basic requirement to gain a Security Industry Association (SIA) licence. This involves a four-and-a-half day course, something that would usually cost around [pounds sterling]220. Not only do candidates receive this for free, they are even paid while they are training.

At the end of the course, candidates will have a qualification that gives them their own London 2012 legacy, as it can help them find work in the future.

"The SIA is a ticket to employment and lasts for three years," adds Hamilton.

"There will be other training courses as well for more specialist functions, such as operating X-ray equipment, walk-through metal detectors or how to search vehicles."

Potential candidates will be asked to attend an interview at one of two recruitment centres -- one in Stratford and one at QPR's Loftus Road football ground -- before their application enters a rigorous vetting process.

"We need people right now," says Hamilton. "The security training starts at the end of this month and in March successful candidates will have training to work in specific venues. Recruitment will continue to increase until the end of June when there will be a significant uplift in staffing and we need our full 10,000 in place for the Games itself. …

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