The Importance of a Technical Education in Security and Fire

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There are generally three levels of knowledge that security and fire field personnel  exhibit in the form of assumed titles:

  1. Wire Puller
  2. Installer
  3. Service Technician

Tech working on Network (image)From the time that someone enters the field knowing very little or nothing about this business, the aim of all concerned above them is to educate them in the intricacies of the post to which they were employed. For the Wire Puller, the Installer is striving to teach them which cable to pull for what device:

  • 4-conductor, 22 – 18 AWG cable for motions
  • 6-condctor, 18 AWG cable for card readers
  • 6-conductor, 18 AWG cable for zoned smoke detectors
  • Etc.

The Installers on each crew also strive to teach their more more promising Wire Pullers where and how to level and mount each device as well as how to install the main alarm control panel. And where  programming is done on site, the task eventually turns to the art of  programming all the intricate data into each location in programming.

testing a fire alarm panel (image)It’s usually the Operations Manager that makes the decision as to which Wire Puller to move from one level to the other in the hopes of one day giving that man or woman their own van and installation crew. This is necessary because the same Ops Mgr is working to move his/her installation foremen upwards into the position of a seasoned, knowledgeable Service Technician.

On a personal note, after decades of managing Wire Pullers, Installers, and Technicians, I have to say that the best Techs that I’ve  had, had some exposure to training in the electronics field. I, myself, became an Associate Electronics Engineer, trained for the manufacturing world early on. I was able to use that training to my advantage as an Installer and Service Technician right from the start as I worked in the field for 15 years before becoming a full-time trade journalist and later an Operations Manager.

working on a burglar alarm installation (image)One way to derive an education for  your technical staff without paying an arm and a leg is to use an educational portal called Alison (http://bit.ly/32Gn8I1). The wonderful thing about this opportunity is that it’s free as each student can monitor the course. If they pass it, that’s when you can invest in a Certificate of Education for that specific student.

The value to you, as a manager, as an owner, is that you can use that ultimate goal (your willingness to purchase the Certificate) as an incentive for them to study on their own time, their own dime. Those who do not pass a course will not receive a Certificate, but the  main benefit is that they walk away with some of what they studied, which can only help them on the job.

Use this handy link to enroll your first student: http://bit.ly/32Gn8I1

–Al Colombo

Human Investigation Management – ISIO
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