The Private Security Authority (PSA) is the statutory body with responsibility for licensing and regulating the private security industry in Ireland. The PSA is an independent body under the aegis of the Department of Justice and has been responsible for licensing security contractors and security employees since 2006. If you want to work in the Security Industry in Ireland you must hold a valid PSA license. It is worth noting that although the PSA issues licenses, it does not provide training. It does however have a comprehensive list of training providers that are more than willing and capable of giving you the training you need in a manner that suits you.
One of the benefits of the COVID Pandemic has been the migration to online for the procurement of certificates and licences. You can now apply and study for your PSA licence from the comfort of home. This allows for greater flexibility and saves candidates lots of time. Different training courses offer paths to the PSA licence, so it is worth finding out which provider suits your timetable best.
“It means that you can work on getting the licence around your work roster,” says Anthea Lalor, HR Manager at Provincial Security. “Some companies do it in chunks while others do it over the course of a few weeks.”
Of course, like any industry, the type of licence that you apply for is dependent on the type of work you are looking to do. The table below (from the PSA website) sets out the minimum training requirements for persons working as employees in the Security Guard (Static), Door Supervisor (Licensed Premises) and Cash-in-Transit sectors. For the most part, people who are coming to work for us at Provincial will have to have the Guarding Skills QQI Level 4 Minor Award (4N1118) or equivalent. This is something you should double check with us before you apply, just to be sure and don’t be misled by the term Static in brackets. If you come to work for us, you won’t be.
Once your training is completed and you have your certificate, you then need to apply for the licence itself. While at first it might seem unreasonable to have to go through more paperwork to get the licence itself, the PSA is responsible for making sure that the people coming into the industry are who they say they are and are also squeaky clean when it comes to criminal records. Applicants applying to the PSA for their first licence must submit their application within 36 months following successful completion of approved training. Training undertaken outside the 36 month period will not be acceptable for licensing purposes.
Well that really couldn’t be easier. First you’ll need to get a few items together. So before you visit any website and start your application, have the following items ready:
Once you have these ready you can start your application process at https://www.psaonlineapplication.com/Forms/PSA_Application
If you’re applying for the first time, there are certain criteria that you will have to meet around background checks and so on,” says Anthea. “We have high standards in the Security Industry here so it is a requirement and one we certainly feel is merited. It helps to build trust which is integral to what we do.”
Once you have registered on-line, you will receive your personalised application pack. This usually arrives within 5 working days. You must sign and return the form within 30 days and include the following documents:
(For further details on the potential impact criminal convictions or other issues have on your eligibility for a PSA licence please visit the PSA website’s "Fit and Proper Guidelines" page.)
(The PSA will accept the following as evidence that you have successfully completed the relevant training course:)
Completed application forms, along with any other documents from the list above should be sent to the PSA in the pre-addressed envelope contained in the application pack or to: The Private Security Authority, Individual Licensing Division, Davis St, Tipperary Town, Co. Tipperary.
The final part of the process involves receiving a Garda Vetting Invite by email. You must complete and return this to the relevant authorities.
When it is all done, you are a qualified security guard and you can come and work for us. We look forward to chatting with you soon.