Analysis of the Security Specialist Position

An organization is created with a special secret or something that sets it apart from its competition. An organization usually has employees and guests in which a loss of either the human element or the secrets would result in a major loss to any company. An organization will hire a personnel security specialist specifically for safeguarding these assets and the organization's interest. This essay will: (a) describe what personnel security is, (b) explain the duties of a personnel security specialist, (c) describe the knowledge needed by the personal security specialist.

Personnel Security

When it comes to the protection and safeguarding of human beings and assets vital to an organization, personnel security focuses on all aspects concerning safety and security against potential threats and liability risks to the organization (Ortmeier, 2009.) These threats or risks can range from a carefully planned terrorist attack to a simple theft of an important asset. When it comes to the livelihood of an organization's employees and guests, an organization has a liability for these individuals. Personnel security is also responsible for executive protection, also known as bodyguards, security measures in controlling access to vital areas, and investigations for an organization.

Duties of a Personnel Security Specialist

Quality Assurance Review

Quality assurance is for continuously improving and maximizing the effectiveness of an organization security measures (Ortmeier, 2009.) The participants must become responsible for the amount of quality, improvements, and commitment to ensure the performance and focus is on the final results and services (Lewis, Goodman, & Fandt, 2008.) Organizations make a major error by hiring a 3rd party to performing the initiatives instead of delegating to the leadership with the responsibilities of getting all the organizations' personnel involved (Clemmer, 1992.) The personnel security specialist holds the responsibility for implementing a quality assurance program that involves the entire organization.


Investigations range from simple backgrounds to deep terrorist attacks. A personal security specialist is responsible for investigating numerous aspects using a systematic approach to collecting all the facts, information, evidence, predictions, forecasts, and possible outcomes in an organized and through manner. A physical security specialist must use communications, critical thinking, honesty and open-mindedness to be an effective investigator and a benefit to the organization (Ohara & Ohara, 2007.) The investigation is not only for incidents, but also in the performance of a thorough risk analysis and prevention.

Developing Policies and Procedures

Another important responsibility for a physical security specialist is in developing action plans by establishing policies and procedures covering a wide range of topics and issues within an organization. Personal security specialist is known to work independently and requires individual judgment and decision making in determining the guidance and precision policies and procedures needed in every department involved. The design of policies and procedures are to provide guidance in specific methods of operations and action for individuals to perform in case of an incident. Policies and procedures are written in a manner in which an individual from anywhere within the organization could read and comprehend to perform the actions if there was a loss of personnel. These policies and procedures are vital to the performance of a personnel security program.

Other Miscellaneous Duties

Personnel security specialist holds several other duties, such as counterterrorism and counterintelligence. A personal security specialist also performs physical and informational security duties because the three areas are interconnected and form a complete security department. In the absence of the physical or information, also known as INFOSEC, security specialists, a personnel security specialist has to have the knowledge and understanding to perform any duties that are pertaining to those positions. A personnel security specialist has to perform the duties requested by a security manager as needed, such as providing executive briefings or reports.

Knowledge needed for a Personnel Security Specialist

The amount of knowledge a personnel security specialist needs is more the most people can understand. The personnel security specialist must keep abreast on the latest and most up-to-date information on issues pertaining to an organization. Some important areas are the complete understanding of the functions and features of all positions within the organization and a thorough understanding in risks assessments and analysis. The knowledge a personnel security specialist obtains is mostly by higher learning, seminars, or on-the-job training.

Functions and Practices

The amount of knowledge a personnel security specialist needs in the everyday functions and practices in an organization is a necessity in the success of the security program. Without this knowledge, a personnel security specialist cannot fully prepare the personnel with the proper policies and procedures needed to preserve and safeguard the individuals and assets within the company. For instance, when an employee applies for another position in a competitive company and that company calls the organization for a verification of employment, the individual doing the verification can only state the dates the person was employed. By adding anything else to the conversation can be an intense liability issues, which could cost an organization monetarily and even cause the organization to shutdown (Ortmeier, 2009.) By understand the policies and procedures, the personnel security specialist can do a proper and in-depth investigation and analysis on a particular incident as possible.

Risk Assessments and Analysis

Risk assessments and analysis is the toughest and most knowledge intensive part of any area of security. These areas are essential to the process of trying to predetermine and risks or actions that may occur. The physical security specialist must use all the training and information to identify and evaluate, critically and objectively, to ensure the safety and security of the company's employees, assets, patrons, and executives of an organization (Ortmeier, 2009.) This knowledge is in areas of counterterrorism, counterintelligence, planning, financials, engineering, policies and procedures, business intelligence, counterespionage, weapons of mass destruction, and force protection. By having this thorough knowledge a personnel security specialist and analyze and assess any risks and vulnerabilities that would lead to losses or costly damages for an organization. By fully understanding this risks and vulnerabilities, a personnel security specialist can optimize a cost-effective approach for avoiding, reducing, spreading, or transferring threats to minimize the amount of hazards and attacks.


In conclusion, the physical security specialist is diverse in many areas throughout an organization. The position of physical security specialist is a crucial position to a complete security program of an organization. With a full understanding of what personal security is, the duties in which a personnel security specialist does, and the amount of knowledge needed to accomplish the safeguarding of humans and vital assets successfully. This analysis of the personnel security specialist demonstrates the necessity and importance this position has within any organization.


Clemmer, J. (1992). 5 common errors companies make starting quality initiatives . Total Quality, 3, 7.

Lewis, P. S., Goodman, S. H., & Fandt, P. M. (2008). Management: Challenges for tomorrow's leaders (5th ed.). Belmont, CA: South-Western/Thomson Learning.

Ohara, C. E., & Ohara, G. L. (2007). Fundamentals of criminal investigation (7th ed.). Springfield, IL: Charles L. Thomas.

Ortmeier, P. J. (2009). Introduction to security operations and management (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.