Nightclub Security Positions (Part 2) – Floormen

Anytime an establishment has a security force, there are bound to be at least one or two Staffers who get to stay in one place all night long. Whether a guard at Buckingham Palace or the security guard at the Mall Information Booth, these individuals generally don’t leave their post and are tasked not only with security, but with the answering of questions and giving of directions. And while many find these posts to be boring, they are an integral part of any Security Staff.

STATIC POSTS (aka Floormen, Boxmen, Halls and Walls)

These Security Staff members are also tasked with basic club security. They generally remain in one place, with the specific goal of watching a designated area of a bar or nightclub. They may be casually dressed, with a shirt reading “SECURITY” on the back, or they may be upgraded to a suit and tie.  Static Posts are key because they are able to get a good “feel” for the crowd in their particular area and are able to maintain a circle of protection around places like stairwells, entrances and exits, or dance floors.

Skill Set and Responsibilities:

  • Have general knowledge of a Bar/Nightclub’s Policies and Procedures. That means reading your establishment’s Security Manual! (You will notice that this is a recurring sentence, and for good reason)
  • Monitor Patrons for signs of intoxication or aggressive behavior.
  • Lookout for hazards to Patrons and Staff, including: broken glass, bottles, chairs, tables, and any other possibly dangerous obstructions. While Roamers generally perform this function, a Static Post should be well aware of any hazards that may get in the way of Patrons, especially when posted in front of Entrances or Exits.
  • Monitor male-to-male behavior like rough-housing and possible early stages of altercations. This should included talking to any individuals who appear to be causing trouble. Static Posts are tasked with “calling in” to Roamers with any problems that they might see in their area.
  • Interdict and de-escalate verbal and physical altercations between Patrons. Generally, this is as back up to Roamers.
  • Securing all remote Exits. Make sure your Static Posts are supervising of all doors, entryways, and exits in their area.

Static Posts are like Air Traffic Controllers: they direct traffic and watch for trouble. These posts should be placed on raised platforms as often as possible. This is important for several reasons:

1) It gives them a good view of your entire establishment. Being above the masses allows them to spot trouble deep in the crowd, where Roamers might be able to see.

2) It lets Patrons know that someone is watching. No one wants to misbehave when they are being watched.

3) It is helpful when they are communicating with Roamers. Static Posts can use flashlights to pinpoint problem spots or guide Roamers to trouble.

It is a good idea to move Static Posts around every 30 minutes or so. This allows them to stretch their legs and keeps them from getting too comfortable and complacent. If necessary, Static Posts may also be tasked with the final “Push” at the end of the night in order to get Patrons out of the establishment.

Next time: Door Outs

Nightclub Security Positions (Part 1) – Roamers

The Bar and Nightclub Industry has changed dramatically in the past 10-15 years. Between liability and loss prevention, ABC regulations, and the introduction of social networking, the business is becoming more and more detail and Patron oriented.  Different promotions on different nights of the week, Facebook invites, Twitter, FourSquare, and 18+ nights all add up to increased workload as well as an increase in the need for job-specific training.

There was a time when all Security were “Bouncers”. But the advent of the upscale lounge and high end nightclub has changed this as well. Now, more than ever, people want to know your title when they walk in the door. Doorman, Floorman, Roamer, VIP Host, Host, Promoter…can anyone really keep track? And ultimately, does it matter? I would argue that while the title is NOT always necessary to the position (whatever that position may be), an understanding of the basic job duties that particular title holds IS always necessary.

In this next series of posts, I will cover the basic Security Staff positions and their various responsibilities. (As always, feel free to make any changes you wish in accordance with the type of bar or club you run)

ROAMERS (aka Floormen, Floaters)

These Security Staff members are tasked with basic club security. They generally circulate throughout the venue, acting as a visible security deterrent. More often than not, they are casually dressed, with a shirt reading “SECURITY” on the back.  Roamers are in many cases the most important members of your Security Staff. They are the cops on the beat, in touch with the vibe of the crowd and usually the first to arrive at any incident or disturbance.

Skill Set and Responsibilities:

  • Have general knowledge of a Bar/Nightclub’s Policies and Procedures. That means reading your establishment’s Security Manual!
  • Lookout for hazards to Patrons and Staff, including: broken glass, bottles, chairs, tables, and any other possibly dangerous obstructions. This is really the Roamer’s main responsibility as they have a better view of the Club than your Doorman or VIP Host.
  • Circulate throughout the venue, evaluating the conduct and attitudes of Patrons and looking for inappropriateness and misbehavior. They should be on the look out for early signs of intoxication or intoxicated Patrons.
  • Monitor male-to-male behavior like rough-housing and possible early stages of altercations. This should included talking to any individuals who appear to be causing trouble.
  • Interdict and de-escalate verbal and physical altercations between Patrons.
  • Attend to the needs of over-intoxicated or physically ill Patrons. That might mean carrying out an intoxicated Patron or holding a woman’s hair back if she is ill.
  • Attend to general cleanliness of the establishment. This means cleaning up spills, broken glass, and yes, bodily fluids if necessary.
  • Securing all remote Exits. Not every Exit will be visible from every part of the establishment. Make sure your Roamers are checking that doors are closed and locked, and that access to Exits  is unimpeded.
  • Monitor  for overcrowding and traffic flow. All Roamers should be carrying flashlights and directing traffic in crowded areas (Hallways, Bathrooms, Dance Floor, Stairwells) to prevent fire hazards.
  • Monitor behavior, line cutting, and traffic flow in Restrooms. Many fights begin in and around bathrooms. Keeping an eye on this area of the establishment will not only porevent altercations, but will cut down on illicit drug use.

Roamers should work in pairs when at all possible and should ALWAYS be equipped with a radio. In some instances, a Roamer may be used for initial set-up of your establishment: placing chairs and tables, brooms and dustpans, and any stanchions needed. They may also be tasked with the final “Push” at the end of the night in order to get Patrons out of the establishment.

Next time: Static Posts