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Selecting a Training Provider

Selecting a Training Provider

We have browsed many industry forums on the internet and every so often see the question, 'There are so many surveillance training providers out there, so how do I choose the right one?'  Hopefully this page will help you decide as you research the internet.

Some Statistics

In 1996, ISS Training Ltd (formerly Intel Security Services) started providing surveillance training in the UK, they were the only company offering this sole type of training. By 2000, there were four others, all of which were close protection companies also teaching surveillance as an additional subject.

Now in 2020 there are many companies claiming to offer surveillance training in the UK, eight of which whose staff were trained on ISS courses, so we must be doing something right. We have perfected our training courses over the past number of years so the student gains the most benefit from the training. The courses are reviewed periodically as part of our quality assurance programme and all of the trainers remain current by continuing to conduct surveillance and investigations when not training.

ISS Training were the first company in the UK to design and have accredited BTEC Awards & Certificates for surveillance training, other companies then followed suit. Recently, ISS Ltraining Ltd, together with Industry Qualifications, have been instrumental and at the forefront in the design of the new OFQUAL qualification in Covert Surveillance Operations. Surely this speaks volumes.

You have probably already looked at some other companies. Some are excellent and extremely good at what they do best, such as their primary subject of close protection training but it is not always the case about surveillance training. If you contact any company, be sure to ask them the following questions and ask to see their training programmes. If you contact us, we will give you the answers.

Questions to Ask

Were any of your instructional staff taught by ISS Training?
How long has the company been running and teaching surveillance?
Do your instructors carry out surveillance as well as teach it?
Can you see a detailed copy of the course training programme?
How many hours do you spend in the cars?
Do you provide any 'after care' for students?
Do you have full insurance?
Do the students use fully covert radios? (don't accept curly earpieces, iPod style earpieces or mobile phones).
Do you carry out full mobile exercises or is it just foot or classroom based?
Are your vehicles regularly inspected, serviced and insured?
Do you offer nationally recognised qualifications, awards or certificates?
What are the costs? Do you offer free accommodation?
Do you have quality assurance to at least British Standards Institute?
Does your training certificate have credibility and weight when applying for a job?
Do you carry out operational surveillance work?

Treat these advertising terms and phrases with caution:

'SIA Registered' or 'SIA Approved Supplier'. This has nothing to do with surveillance training, only door supervision, CCTV Control, static guarding and close protection. Some companies use this to suggest that their surveillance training is approved by the SIA. This is illegal and should be reported.

'Edexcel / Pearson Approved'. Ensure that their surveillance training is approved and accredited by Pearson, otherwise you may be misled by those who are Pearson approved for Close Protection training only and you will not receive a Pearson surveillance certificate.

'Level 3 or 4 Training'. If it is not accredited by an awarding body, it means that the training company has set the level themselves and there is no official certificate.

'We can offer you surveillance work after the course' or ‘We will add you to our Database of operators’. Please treat with extreme caution. Many people have a natural aptitude for this type of work, some do not but they will not find out until they have finished the course and parted with their money. How can a company who trains 150 people a year expect to give all of them a job offer? It's not rocket science.

Telephone your training provider and talk to them.

ISS - The Intelligent Choice, the Professionals Choice.