3 minute read

Airport Security Personnel Job Description, Career as a Airport Security Personnel, Salary, Employment

Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job

Education and Training: High School diploma

Salary Median: – $48,363.38 annually

Employment Outlook: – Good

Airport security measures have become extremely meticulous after the 9-11 tragedy, creating many layers of protection against potential criminals. Airport security jobs now cover a wide area of responsibilities, providing aspirants with a large number of choices for a career in this field. Airport security personnel are appointed to protect air travelers, as well as the country, from criminal activities.

Airport security jobs can be divided broadly into two categories – administrative jobs and operations jobs. Security personnel working in operations are directly responsible for the implementation of security measures, while those who are a part of the administrative management monitor the routine security operations and work on improving it continuously. Management jobs also involve duties which are not directly related to security like the job of a financial specialist who manages the budget of the security setup. The demands of the job and earnings can vary depending upon the level of responsibility associated with the position as well as past performance and experience.

Education and Training Requirements

A high school diploma, GED or equivalent, or at least a year’s experience working full time as a security personnel preferably in screening or x-ray work would make a person eligible for an airport security job. However, as mentioned earlier airport security personnel are involved in a wide range of activities which require diverse skills and qualifications. Most airport security personnel only have a high school diploma or its equivalent but they receive a variety of training and may also have to take several tests depending upon the requirement of their position. Further, in most states, guards are required to have a license, which requires thorough background checks, drug testing and classroom training.

Those who are interested in pursuing administrative or managerial careers in airport security should get a Bachelor’s degree in Police Science or Criminal Justice. It may be necessary to work in operations for at least three to five years in operations before moving up the ladder.

Getting the Job

Recruitment for airport security jobs is managed by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). Aspiring employees can check out the TSA website for vacancies and apply online. The website has complete listings of full time, as well as part time jobs along with appropriate application forms. Applicants can also apply by phone by calling up the TSA Recruitment Center. Those who have hearing impairment can use the TTY phone number mentioned in the website.

Since airport security jobs involve national security, candidates are required to undergo extensive background checks. The TSA also recruits airport security personnel through private screening companies that are members of its Screening Partnership Program. These companies have the authority to hire employees for airport security.

Advancement Possibilities and Employment Outlook

Airport security jobs have grown considerably after the 9-11 terrorist attack. According to data from March 2005, there were 49,200 airport screeners under federal employment, which is remarkably high compared to the period before September 11, 2001.

Since the requirement for better security is on an uptrend due to increasing level of threat perception, it is estimated that the requirement for airport security personnel will grow manifold in the coming years.

Working Conditions

Airport security personnel work in the well-maintained and comfortable environments of airports. Those in managerial levels work from the comfort of their offices.

Where to Go for More Information

Transportation Security Administration
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Human Resources Service Ctr.
2nd Floor – Metroplace 1
2650 Park Tower Drive
Vienna, VA 22180-7300

U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Aviation Administration
800 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20591

Salary, Earnings and Benefits

Earnings and associated benefits vary with the experience, degrees of expertise and position. The salary for airport security jobs are fixed on the basis of a shared value system. This takes into account the minimum and maximum salary for each type of job. Entry level salary of airport security personnel ranges between $25,141 and $43,357. With experience, this can go up to a range of $47,298 to $89,376, annually.

Entry level airport security personnel do not receive many benefits or perks. However, experienced personnel can expect benefits usually enjoyed by employees in other professions, including vacations, paid leaves, and monetary incentives.

Additional topics

Job Descriptions and Careers, Career and Job Opportunities, Career Search, and Career Choices and ProfilesLaw and Public Service