In today's bizarre and competitive job market, traditional recruiting methods may not always yield the desired results. To discover fresh talent and tap into diverse skill sets, Integrators and security manufacturers are increasingly exploring non-traditional ways of finding new employees. In the following paragraphs, we explore some alternative talent acquisition strategies that can help uncover “hidden gems” and attract candidates from places we wouldn’t normally think to look. 

By thinking “outside the box” and embracing creative approaches, companies can expand their talent pool and enhance their chances of securing top-notch professionals. 

Consider some of the following recommendations for recruiting technicians, security sales professionals, and operational and technical managers:

1.    Leverage online communities and social media. In the digital age, online communities and social media platforms offer an abundance of opportunities for talent sourcing. Security forums, integrator industry-specific groups, and platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter allow hiring professionals to connect directly with working professionals who are passionate about their respective fields. By actively engaging in discussions, sharing valuable insights, and utilizing targeted search functions, recruiters can identify potential candidates with specific skills and interests. Look at what posts potential candidates are posting, and their reactions to other’s postings to determine their interests! 

2.    Collaborate within security industry events and conferences. Attending ISC West, PSA TEC, AcceleRISE, GSX, LeadHER, and other industry events and conferences dedicated to specific security domains or technologies can provide access to a highly targeted talent pool. By participating as speakers, hosting workshops, or simply networking with attendees, integrators can engage with professionals who are passionate and knowledgeable about their respective industries. This approach allows for direct interaction and helps build connections with potential candidates who may have unique skills or experience. Most of these conferences also foster healthy non-competition by partnering integrators and manufacturers which don’t do business in the same areas of the country. 

3.    Attend cybersecurity conferences and events. Participating in cybersecurity conferences and events allows physical security integration company recruiters to interact directly with cybersecurity technicians who are passionate about their work. These events provide opportunities for networking, knowledge sharing, and showcasing organizational expertise. By attending or sponsoring such conferences, businesses can connect with security technicians, gain insights into emerging trends, and establish meaningful relationships with potential candidates. Cybersecurity and physical security convergence is a top priority for security integrators and physical security system manufacturers. We can benefit from having a person on staff who has an information technology degree, certifications, or background. Those skillsets transfer easily into program manager roles, technical sales roles, and application engineering roles. 

4.    Explore “cross-industry” talent transfer. Transferring talent from related industries can bring fresh perspectives and diverse skill sets to an organization. Some great examples of this are recruiting inside sales reps from distributors who are already familiar with the terminology we use every day. Alternatively, by actively seeking professionals from fields such as IT, software development, or law enforcement, integrators can tap into a talent pool that may possess transferable skills that apply to security integration. This approach not only introduces new ideas and innovation but also encourages a culture of cross-training, where individuals from different backgrounds collaborate and contribute to the growth of the organization. Consider how security industry and construction industry project management are only a stone’s throw away from each other, and many of the principles and common body of knowledge and code basics overlap! This means folks can come up to speed much faster and be able to speak the language more quickly. 

5.    Build partnerships with security training programs. Developing partnerships with security training programs, such as those offered by technical colleges and specialized training providers, is an effective way to identify aspiring security technicians. By collaborating with these programs, recruiters can gain access to a pool of individuals who are actively pursuing security education and training. Establishing internships, apprenticeships, or mentorship programs can create pathways for nurturing “emerging talent” and can bridge the gap between theoretical knowledge and practical application. Programs like FAST and the SIA technician apprenticeship programs are specific to the security industry. 

6.    Look for military and law enforcement backgrounds. Seeking security technicians from military or law enforcement backgrounds can be a fruitful strategy. Individuals with prior military or law enforcement experience often possess valuable skills and a strong sense of discipline that aligns with the demands of the security field. Targeted recruitment efforts, such as attending career fairs or establishing connections with veterans’ organizations and law enforcement agencies, can help identify candidates with relevant backgrounds and a passion for security work. Many of the folks who previously held law enforcement roles or military roles transition into the security industry very effectively. ASIS, for example, has a program which focuses on transitioning military and law enforcement professionals into private security programs. 

7.    Work with technology integration partners. Security integrators have strong relationships with the manufacturers of the products and services to which they add value and resell. Integrators often participate in “advisory council” or “advisory board” roles to help manufacturers keep the pulse on the integrators that represent their products and services. These partners often have dedicated sales teams with a strong understanding of the product offerings and industry trends. Establishing relationships with such partners and exploring synergies can help identify sales professionals with a track record of success in the security systems domain. It’s not uncommon for a sales person at an integration company to move into a role at one specific manufacturer they sell. The same goes for manufacturer engineers and sales people. They may find that they want to diversify their skill sets. Recruiting from within is challenging, but can be a great way to source talent. 

8.    Utilize a professional recruiting service. ALS Consulting and Bayne Consulting and Search (BCSI) are a couple of companies well known in the security industry. These services are often expensive, but are very skilled and adaptable, and create tremendous value for the cost. Integrators and manufacturers can be guaranteed success by having professionals vetted out by recruiters during the hiring process. Most recruiting organizations have years of experience navigating the complex field of security industry recruiting and have solid relationships with everyone involved in the process, so you can count on results.