Hiring a bodyguard might be a daunting experience given your personal circumstances and reasons for needing close protection services, it may be a completely alien experience to you if you have not hired a bodyguard before. These days, it is a lot easier than you might think. Still, there are many pitfalls and rogue companies that you should do your best to avoid. In this article, we will expertly guide you through the whole process.
Once you have decided to hire a bodyguard, you need to consider exactly what you need the bodyguard(s) for and what type of bodyguard you require.
There are hundreds of close protection companies in the UK to choose from. As usual, when hiring any services, you should obtain quotes from various companies. You may have received recommendations from family, friends, or colleagues, which is a great help in locating tried and tested bodyguard services. However, it would be best if you still carried out your own research and due diligence.
A reputable close protection company will expect you to ask questions and carry out due diligence on their company. A good close protection company will carry out basic due diligence on you, the client or principal. This is not only to qualify your enquiry and to ensure that you are a genuine customer but also to establish a brief threat and risk profile which will enable them to best advise and quote you more accurately for your circumstances and requirements.
Your first port of call should be Google. Search ‘hire a bodyguard’, ‘bodyguard services in london’ or a similar related search term of your choice. Generally, you can ignore the top four results that are paid adverts, unless of course, they are relevant to your search. The top three organic results after the adverts are the security companies you should consider and look further into.
Use a couple or a few different but similar search terms and see which company or companies consistently come up and are dominating those top three organic search results. Google has put them there for a reason. Google’s clever algorithms and Artificial Intelligence (AI) has ranked them as most relevant to your search term, your location, and the service that you are looking for. Google holds these companies in high regard.
Make a list of the top security companies that provide close protection services and visit their websites, do not fall for flashy websites with stock images of luxury cars/homes/private jets and yachts, equally do not fall for their sales patter and outlandish, unsubstantiated claims such as: ‘world’s best close protection company’, ‘government standard’, ’40+ years’ experience’ etc. These claims are easily fact-checked and swiftly debunked, more on that later.
Once you have viewed all potential bodyguard service providers, make a shortlist of the companies you feel are the most suitable and professional. Now it is time to delve a little deeper, read their reviews online on several different platforms, look out for fake reviews. These are usually exceptionally long and detailed, sounding more like a sales pitch or the company owners boasting. Be cautious of staff members singing the company’s praises. They would never have hired their services before or have been a genuine customer, they may well have been coerced into writing them.
Look at the company’s social media profiles, are they consistently professional? Are they posting stock images on Instagram claiming to be working all over the world, spamming LinkedIn with sales and marketing posts, or posting pictures on Facebook of their clients, their client’s cars, houses, yachts, and private jets? These are red flags. If you witness either of these things cross them off your list and move on.
Now to debunk some of those outlandish claims; look up the company directors on LinkedIn. You can establish how long they are claiming to have been directors, cross reference this with Companies House records. This will tell you exactly when the company was incorporated, who the directors are, and when each director was appointed. Do they have the history, background, and experience they are claiming to have on their website? If not, cross them off your list and move on. You can also see on LinkedIn how many people are working for the so-called ‘global company’ and what turnover the “world’s best security company” has documented with Companies House.
Hopefully, by now you have whittled down your list to maybe one or two companies that have impressed you, it is time to pick up the phone and speak to them. Alternatively, you can email them and gauge how long it takes for them to reply, how professional, helpful, and caring they are. Or do they want to secure a quick sale and take your money with little regard for you or your circumstances?
When speaking to the security company, here are some things you should establish:
If you follow this complete procedure, then you are far more likely to hire a reliable professional bodyguard backed by a competent organisation.
Westminster Security provides professional close protection security services in London, the UK and worldwide.