Security Consultant Business Idea
How to become a security consultant is a popular question for people who want to start a small business and explore a variety of opportunities within the broad security industry. As a security consultant, your business will provide advice to clients on how to best protect their assets. These assets can vary considerably – your existing experience and business planning efforts will help you narrow down your security specialties.
Whether perceived or real, social and economic turbulence is a pervasive concern today. In times of uncertainties, risks, or threats, security is paramount to the well-being of both individuals and businesses. As a security consultant, your job is to identify risk areas for your clients and both propose and implement solutions to address security risks.
How To Become A Security Consultant
The first step when learning how to become a security consultant is to decide in what areas of security you plan to specialize. The security sector is broad and can cover any of the following areas:
- Household security including alarm systems, safe rooms and residential surveillance equipment
- Business security that focuses both on protecting commercial property as well as intellectual property (trade secrets, financial information, or company strategies)
- Personal security that offers solutions for protecting individuals (executives, government officials or celebrities)
- Property security that attempts to minimize the risk of retail shrinkage through theft
Regardless of the type of security in which your business specializes, the primary services your business will provide are:
- Meet with clients and understand their security concerns and goals
- Audit your client, identifying and discussing current security risk areas
- Propose solutions for addressing both existing security vulnerabilities as well as any potential security issues that may lie ahead
- Implement yourself or partner with another business to put in place the solutions you and your client agree upon
- Perform regular audits to ensure your solutions properly mitigate security risks
As the business owner, you will be involved in more than just the core security business activities. To keep your business running and growing, you will also be responsible for:
- Marketing your security services and filling your client pipeline
- Billing clients and collecting payments
- Staying on top of security industry trends
- Attending relevant security trade shows, training events and seminars
- Networking with potential security partners and related firms
- Staying in touch with existing clientele
- Keeping an eye out for ways to expand your business
Getting Started In Your Security Consultant Business
Once you have narrowed down the consulting focus for your security operation, there are a few preparation activities you’ll need to do next before you officially open your doors for business. The first step is to make sure you are up-to-date with the current security concerns and trends within your area of focus. There are a variety of security training courses you can take and many offer formal certification programs as well. You can easily search online for training and certification providers.
As a security consultant, your primary tools will be your knowledge and experience. However, certain security specialties, such as network security, will require specialized hardware and software tools for you to use to conduct your initial security audit. When learning how to become a security consultant, if your business will also implement your security suggestions, obviously your list of equipment, supplies and resources will grow. For example:
- If you install residential security and monitoring systems, you’ll need the core security hardware, wiring, and computer systems to install. You’ll also need to likely partner with a licensed contractor to manage any structural work.
- If you staff for executive security, you’ll need secure transportation, communication equipment, weapons, and skilled security officers and bodyguards.
- If you manage ongoing security for a company’s intellectual property (IP), you’ll need software tools and resources to monitor any breach of access. You’ll also need a legal team to help enforce IP violations.
If you already have experience within the security sector, you can likely leverage your existing contact list to try and find engagements. You should also plan to attend security trade shows and learn about the types of companies that are interested in your area of specialty. Cold calling is never fun but there are times you just need to pick up the phone, introduce yourself, and try and get your foot in the door. For residential security clients, you might consider teaching a free class on simple ways to secure homes and important household assets.
Keys To Success
When learning how to become a security consultant, keep the following keys to success in mind:
- Clients are paying you for your expertise. Stay on top of industry and technology trends so that you can provide the most current and effective security recommendations.
- Even if you have a large contract with a single client, try your best to diversify. Putting all of your eggs in one basket can lead to disaster if you lose your client for whatever reason.
- Protect your clients’ assets as if they were your own. Any breaches of security while on your watch will not reflect favorably.
Expanding Your Security Consulting Business
Once you learn how to become a security consultant and your business is running smoothly, it may be time to expand. Consider the following ideas for possible ways to grow you business:
- Hire additional staff to take on more clients (assuming the demand is there)
- Expand your security focus to specialize in other security sectors
- Conduct training courses for in-house corporate security professionals
- Sell products related to your security specialty
- Write security-related books or publish a security newsletter