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Training facility and event staff

This is an excerpt from Security and Risk Assessment for Facility and Event Managers With HKPropel Access by Stacey Hall,James A. McGee & Walter E. Cooper.


Once the necessary protective measures, plans, policies, and procedures are in place, staff need to understand their respective roles and responsibilities in the implementation phase. Therefore, a key factor in protecting critical infrastructures is the effective training of staff members. According to Sennewald (2003, p. 97), training is defined as “an educational, informative, skill-development process that brings about anticipated performance through a change in comprehension and behavior.” Before the facility or event manager begins developing a training plan, they must consider the basic questions of what, why, who, when, and how (see sidebar) (Hall et al., 2012, p. 120).

  • What kinds of plans, policies, and measures need to be communicated to staff for them to fulfill their roles and responsibilities?
  • Why are specific plans and policies in place? Ensuring that staff are aware of the reasons and justification for implementation helps them understand why they are performing certain security roles and the intended outcome of their actions (or inactions). For example, inform staff that an entry pat-down policy is needed because of an increase in the national security alert level, because of threat assessment outcomes for the event, or to prevent dangerous items from entering the facility and causing harm.
  • Who should be involved in the training program, and to what extent? New and returning employees may be oriented to general facility policies through an orientation seminar. Employees expected to perform specific key roles or tasks during a crisis may be required to complete specific training exercises—for example, an employee who might need to perform first aid must be certified to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation.
  • When should management conduct training? Training is an ongoing process, not a one-time event. Training may be conducted annually, or semiannually for refresher training courses. Generally, short seminars and briefs are conducted close to the day of the event (or on an off day). Complex training sessions such as exercises are conducted periodically, sometimes years in advance (such as for the Olympics), and continue until the day of the event.
  • How should training be delivered? The plans, policies, and measures to be implemented dictate the type and level of training required for personnel to perform their roles and responsibilities. Training can be delivered through various methods, such as an orientation seminar, workshop, or briefings, or more extensively through discussion-based or operational-based exercises (covered in chapter 6).

Training is an ongoing responsibility, and management should have a continuous training and evaluation system in place. Employees must maintain or obtain the necessary knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully complete job functions and tasks. Training can be conducted annually, semiannually, or as needed if plans, policies, or measures change (Hall et al., 2012) (see sidebar).

Planning a Training Program


  • What plans need to be communicated?
  • What policies need to be communicated?
  • What security measures need to be communicated?


  • What is the reason or justification for specific plans, policies, and measures?
  • Do employees understand security roles and intended outcomes?


  • Who should be involved in the training program?


  • When should management conduct training and how often?


  • How should management implement training given the various delivery methods?
More Excerpts From Security and Risk Assessment for Facility and Event Managers With HKPropel Access