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Securing our future, protecting our environment

Green business practices for the security service industry

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A security guard company's mandate is to guard and secure. Adopting "green" business practices will help to secure and enhance the sustainability of the environments in which we all work and live. The implementation of green technology will result in resource and energy conservation, financial savings and job performance efficiency.

In 2007, Universal Protection Service developed and implemented a proprietary green technology called Reportrack to virtually eliminate the use of paper by security officers in their daily duties. In the security business, officers fill out a paper daily activity report. We estimate that more than 10,000 pieces of paper per day or 3.6 million pieces per year are used.

Reportrack enables security officers to compose and complete daily activity and incident reports electronically. The officers, as well as clients, can view the reports online and store them electronically for up to five years. Security personnel carry around a mobile communication device to track their daily tasks and activities and electronically create reports. The use of paper can be virtually eliminated.

An added benefit of using paperless technology is that building owners and managers can qualify for points under the innovation category within the LEED certification process. Created by the U.S. Green Building Council, which represents every sector of the building industry, LEED guidelines can help buildings develop green building practices, resulting in environmental leadership, operational efficiency, market leverage and profitability. Owners and managers are embracing a commitment to sustainable green projects. Many tenants have a green mandate that includes securing and retaining office space in buildings that adopt green practices. Attracting and retaining these tenants is critically important to asset value enhancement.

A security service provider can be a green partner with building owners and managers in achieving asset value enhancement. In 2008, Universal Protection Service will endeavor to partner with clients by 1) encouraging at least half of their customers to use its green reporting program; 2) implementing an electronic application system enabling security officer applicants, approximately 25,000 per year, to complete required hiring information and screening packages electronically via computer terminals located in each branch office; 3) activating an electronic invoicing and payment processing system for clients, thus reducing the need to print more than 1,700 invoices per month; and 4) utilizing its e-learning center to provide officers with training programs that will save millions of pieces of paper per year. This partnership will result in saving approximately 200 trees per year. Imagine if all service provider-owner partnerships accomplished this.

Another critical green initiative achievable by every company, especially security service providers, is the reduction in carbon emissions. Universal Protection Service will replace its entire fleet of vehicles over the next two years by investing more than $2.5 million dollars to replace every company vehicle with a hybrid.

There are many initiatives a company can implement to help conserve our planet's natural resources and ensure that future generations have these resources to sustain life.

About Universal Protection Service

Founded in 1965, Universal Protection Service combines an innovative mix of tradition with cutting-edge systems and technology to keep pace with the ever-evolving needs of today's business environments. Headquartered in Santa Ana, Calif., with offices throughout California and Arizona, Universal employs hands-on and highly experienced management teams, making the company uniquely positioned to deliver the finest quality security professionals, fire and life safety services, and electronic security solutions that the industry has to offer. For more information visit our Web site at www.universalpro.com.


Jones is chief operating officer for Universal Protection Service, a member of the U.S. Green Building Council.

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