This Organization is Helping Security Professionals Get Meaningful Certifications
“When you do your job for so many years, you don’t feel like spending hours in a classroom, paying a lot of money to hear things you already know from practice. At least like 80%. But if you don’t have a certification, that really limits your career possibilities.
I saw an ad on Facebook and applied online. The IAPPA certification board contacted me, asked for more documentation, ran background checks and, after I confirmed the requirements, I got certified. It was simple but not easy. And because they took it seriously, I know it’s worth it.”
A. Ortega, Certified Security Manager in Dubai.
What is the IAPPA Certification Program?
The International Association of Personal Protection Agents, active worldwide since 1989, has always been known for putting strong emphasis on practical experience and wouldn’t even certify their own graduates until they could prove at least two years of experience on the field. Now, the other way around can work for you, if you have enough training and experience but lack a certification.
At the beginning of 2020, the association launched its online academy to close knowledge gaps around real-life topics for security and law enforcement professionals. But while you can learn the theory and analyze real case studies e.g. for Security Risk Management, you cannot replace real life experience.
Now, as part of the United International Security Associations (UISA), IAPPA is engaging in a groundbreaking certification program that allows experienced security professionals to become certified in what they are good at without all the hassle and prohibitive costs commonly associated with it.
The Old Way in Security and Law Enforcement
Up until now, there were only a few unsatisfactory ways to get certified in security professions:
1. Newbies could attend comprehensive and expensive courses where they would learn the main skills needed for the work. With the quality varying from institution to institution, there could be enough practical drills to be able to perform the job. For experienced professionals without a certification, this was not an option.
2. Less serious institutions would offer “certifications” based on online courses that can be done by anyone and cost as few as $20. Any big employer is aware of such courses, so presenting one of these “certifications” will not make anyone look better - on the contrary! And no serious security professionals would ever want to harm their reputation by buying a worthless certification.
3. Really good professionals, with knowledge and practice, but who lacked a formal certification, would have their career development checked since this recognition would be required for promotions or top-notch job interviews.
Even if you bring years of experience in police or military, you would have to start all over again to become certified in the civilian sector.
None of them are good alternatives.
Why the IAPPA Certification Program is Revolutionary
The IAPPA Certification program is closing this gap for people who really know their jobs, have hands-on experience and want that to be valued as such. For very low fees compared to extensive certification courses, it offers experienced professionals a valid trackable certificate. Issued by a worldwide recognized institution, employers know that the person is a serious and field-proven professional. Without all the hassle and costs of the older ways.
How it Works
Any person who has been active in security, law enforcement or military and has gathered enough knowledge and experience in a specific area can find their corresponding certification according to the UISA table of standards.
√ Applications are submitted online and assessed by the IAPPA Certification Board. Background checks are conducted, some documents might be validated with the issuing institution or more information or documents may be requested.
√ Once you fulfill all the requirements, you will be issued a hand-signed certificate including a unique number for any employer to confirm directly if necessary. The price will vary depending on the certification but it mainly covers the research, material and shipping costs.
√ If you lack some theoretical knowledge, you can still book one of IAPPA’s online courses to be entitled to certification. This also applies in case you are overqualified for one level certification but still miss one requirement for the next level of certification (e.g. “manager” instead of “supervisor”).
The only exception is the Private Executive Protection Agent (PEPA) program. This one is geared exclusively towards former police and military personnel with close protection experience. The online course will level the knowledge to IAPPA standards and includes several sections preparing you for the specifics of close protection in civilian environments. The online course is included in the certification at no extra course but its completion is also a pre-requisite for certification.
Who is it for?
Currently, the certification outline for several areas of security have been defined by the certification board. Depending on your experience and training, you might be entitled to certification as a professional, supervisor or manager in your area of work.
Below you will find a list of professions certified by IAPPA or our UISA partners WSPA and ISSDA.
The Next Step
Visit the IAPPA certification page or click on the certifications below, see what requirements you need to fulfill for your next step on the career ladder, gather the proof, and apply with no delay.