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Career As A Cctv/alarm/intruder Engineer?


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Hi all,

I am interested in a traineeship with a view to a long term career in security engineering and I'm hoping to get some views on my questions. Everything I know about the job appeals to me so far

Please could you tell me:

1) how skilled is it as a career? Is it comparably skilled to an electrician for example?

2) do you know of any reason why this career would become less skilled in the future, due to the increase in wireless technology etc?

3) I've always been interested in becoming an electrician too, is there much crossover between these jobs?

4) Are the skills learned in security engineering applicable to other careersand/job?

I guess I am just looking for some reassurance that this is an interesting and skilled trade and that these skills will still be required in 20+ years time.

Thanks very much for your time

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Richard-the-ninth

Answers to your questions.

 

1) No.

No qualifications needed what so ever, most learn "on the job" That said, often they only know that this wire goes here that wire goes there etc, and if it doesn't work they have no idea what to do.

 

2) Depends

Small companies can not afford 1 person for 1 job, it has to be 1 person several jobs. big companies, 1 person 1 job, so in a way a small company is better.

 

3) Electrician is better.

Electrician can not only "install a ceiling light", they understand how it works,  see 1.

 

4) yes

Floor sweeper. It is a very dedicated job.

 

__________________________________

 

Will the skills still be needed in 20+ years? who knows. Some one will still have to change batteries.

Unlike an electrician, as I said, being an alarm bod is very specialist, but its up to you, how much effort / interest you are willing to learn, there are not may qualifications and who cares, the question is, can you do the job, and most of them do "call out" where by they are on call and can be out for very long hours.

 

You may also want to consider becoming a fire alarm engineer. Fire alarm engineers hate electricians.

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kerching

Additionally Electricians do not have a very high opinion of Fire Alarm Fitters

Just saying

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What do you mean by 'security engineering' ?

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Richard-the-ninth

What do you mean by 'security engineering' ?

 

I can guess that one.

 

Most alarm bods are called "alarm engineers" so anyone who does not know will assume that the bod is called an engineer, therefore to work in the industry it must be called "alarm engineering"

when as said the "alarm engineers" really have no engineering qualifications what so ever. (But that is also true of other jobs.....lift engineer, escalator engineer, CCTV engineer)

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Many thanks for the replies.

I believe the company I've seen have called it 'security engineering' because they offer a range of security services. Fire alarms, cctv, intruder alarm, barrier control, access control, emergency lighting, fire extinguishers. And to make it sound better I dare say!

does anyone know people in this field and whether they enjoy it? It appears to be lucrative.

Ive done home study before and would be willing to get the electrician qualifications in my spare time.

Can I ask what the problem is between fire alarm fitters and electricians?

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binky

Electricainas can fit Fire alarms and generally do a better job, particulalry of the electrical connection to the panel.

 

The work can be lucarative, but you need to go deeper than the basics for that, there are various 'closed systems' for which the name eludes me, that require training to a higher level to comply with insurance industry requirements. I'm thinking of Bank systems, big building systems. Trouble with that level of work is that it is a fairly closed shop and not easy to get into as it is fairly stitched up by Securicor and the like.

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I used to service them, enjoyed it but was doing 50k miles/year and being on-call was a pain.

Smaller companies mean you're on call-out more often but hopefully you'd have a smaller area to cover so less out of hours visits than the nationals

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Richard-the-ninth

Electricainas can fit Fire alarms and generally do a better job, particulalry of the electrical connection to the panel.

 

That is what fire alarm people say about electricans. (No really they do, except the last part)

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binky

you sure about that  :^O

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Richard-the-ninth

you sure about that  :^O

 

As Churchill would say "Oh, yes"

 

But here is the nail in the coffin. In most cases, its true. Its to do with the fire regulations which as electrcians you don't need to know.

 

And I am NOT a fire alarm bod, I hate them too.

 

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Thanks a lot for the advice guys. I would love to go down the electrician route in an ideal world.

What do they mean by electricianas? And why do you guys hate each other lol

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Richard-the-ninth

I regretfully have to not agree with col.

 

Smaller companies need money to operate, as such they will, and do go to almost any lengths to get it. "yes mate, I know we live in your town and you have expanded to new town that is 150 miles away, of course will will install the same alarm up there as we have down here"

 

Where as a big national would say, Our local office will install the same alarm that we have down here, no problem.

 

Further more, if you are considering a job in the alarm industry soley for money, forget it. To be good you have to want to work in the industry, those that do it for the money don't stay long. (and yes, i have the Tshirt)

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binky

actually as an Approved Contractor it is expected that I know fire regs - crops up on my assessments every year

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kerching

+1 to BINKY

I reckon a Proper Electrician has one of the most versatile Trades as it covers so many aspects. That is if you want to challenge yourself...some are happy with a life of house bashing

The only problem appears to be that...as soon as you appear to have cracked it you are approaching winding down and retiring

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binky

retire - I wish :Pray

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Andy™

actually as an Approved Contractor it is expected that I know fire regs - crops up on my assessments every year

 

 im not AC, but if it was and they said i must know them, they would be getting told to F O. i dont do fire alarms so what would be the point

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Richard-the-ninth

actually as an Approved Contractor it is expected that I know fire regs - crops up on my assessments every year

 

 

 

 im not AC, but if it was and they said i must know them, they would be getting told to F O. i dont do fire alarms so what would be the point

 

Andy has my point entirly.

 

Most electricans do not need, or do not want to know about fire alarms

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My very good friend who has been an electrician for 20+ years has been working for fire alarm companies for the last 10 or so.

 

My friend does very well as he is the QS for the company, deals with one local authority for that area as they do all the buildings run by that local authority.   He gets van, tools, company card, £25 an hour, £37.5 for over time, regular pulls in £1000-1200 a week. Lately he has been going to the cinema in work time, riding his bike, large 2 hour pub lunches, one big fat bird who is high up in the authority has also been giving Jobs that Blow :innocent . He is doing very well from it and makes the most of it.

 

His company also employs unskilled youths to do most of the work as they can get away with paying them a poor wage. 1 man is well payed and the 10-20 blokes he runs get peanuts.

 

 

I have done quite a bit of work with the fire alarm company, there is a skill to it but nothing like what an electrician needs to know.

 

Intruder alarms, barrier control are both completely different skill sets.

 

 

 

If you are lucky enough to learn it all, you might be ready to retire by then.

 

 

 

 

I would say the most skilled is an electrician. I would also say whatever company offers the best package go with that, be it electrician, fire alarm, intruder alarm.

 

 

 

Personally i wish i had trained as an optician.

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binky

we don't hate fire alarm fitters, they just have limited knowledge.

 

I do fit fire alarms occassionally, ruddy doddle, especially the bi-wire stuff. As an AC, I don't have to verbatum quote fire regs, but I am expected to have copies of BS standards. The best thing about fire and security systems is the return work to 'service' systems, money for old rope really.

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kerching

^^^^^^^+1 to what Binky said

I have the full set of Solo No Climb test kit, including pole and extension to reach 8m...higher if you stand on a deck. Only thing I have not got is the head remover.....yet

Just saying

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NozSpark

As an AC youre only expected to have access to the BS standards that cover the types of work that you do, so I'd you don't do fire alarms then you don't need that Reg.

As for domestic smoke/heat alarm systems then you can get away with the manufacturers instructions and the Aico handy book (for Aico stuff)

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