what is a gateman?

A gateman monitors the entrance and exit of visitors in a company or residential area. You ensure the gates are guarded, and record visitors admitted to the facility, including their arrival and departure times. Whether you are the gatekeeper for a licenced property or a residential area, you need to ensure that only authorised visitors enter the premises. Your job is to check identification documents and screen cars entering the gate.

what does a gatekeeper do?

A gatekeeper ensures the property they are assigned to protect is safe from external threats. Aside from screening visitors, you also check the premises regularly to ensure alarm systems and cameras are working properly. You respond to alarms in the building and direct people to safety. When there is a threat on the premises, you call law enforcement agencies and ensure everyone is safe before the police arrive.

As a gateman, you also beef up security measures to prevent burglary and loss of company property. If some parts of the premises don't have security systems, you need to install them. You also check locks to ensure doors are properly closed at the end of the day. The job is highly sensitive and requires you to be on your toes. You need to be physically strong and able to think on your feet to respond to threats promptly. In some cases, you need knowledge of firearms and combat training since you work in an industry prone to violence.

Would working as a gateman suit your ability to think on your feet? Then read on to find out what competencies and qualifications you need to thrive in a gateman role.

gateman jobs

average salary of a gateman

According to ONS, the median salary of a gateman is £23,876 per year, which translates to £12.24 per hour. When you join an entry-level position, your compensation package starts at £22,064 annually, while experienced gatekeepers earn up to £26,325 per year.

Apart from your base salary, you also receive various allowances. For instance, you get life insurance and medical allowance. Some companies offer transport allowances. You also receive additional income for working overtime or bonuses.

what factors affect the salary of a gateman?

As a gatekeeper, your salary fluctuates based on your responsibilities and experience level. For instance, if you have over five years of experience, the skills you bring to the table raise your salary bracket. Previous experience in security roles or the army also significantly improves your compensation package. While educational qualifications are not a priority for employers, having additional training in safety courses or first-aid increases your salary prospects.

The location and company size also influence your salary. For instance, if you work in populated areas or urban centres with security threats, your earnings are higher due to the risks associated with the job. The high demand for gatekeepers also raises your earnings. Large companies often pay gatekeepers higher than small start-ups due to the scope of responsibilities.

smiling male wearing reflective vest signalling to the right
smiling male wearing reflective vest signalling to the right

types of gatemen

Gatekeepers serve different purposes depending on the employer. Some of the types of gatemen include:

  • residential gateman: as a residential gatekeeper, you protect a residential property. You work in a gated community, take care of the entire neighbourhood or protect the private residence of your employer. You can work at the gate or patrol the entire area.
  • business gatekeepers: as a business gateman, you guard business premises. For instance, you can protect a retail store or licenced establishments like bars, restaurants and hospitals. Your job is to prevent unauthorised access and burglary by beefing up security.


working as a gateman

Working as a gateman involves protecting premises from external threats. You also present a positive company image to visitors by welcoming and directing them around the premises. Let's explore the specific duties and responsibilities of gatemen.



education and skills

You can become a gateman without any post-secondary education since employers are focused on your experience and physical fitness. However, you need to complete an approved training course in operating CCTV or front-line security to work in some institutions. You also need basic administrative knowledge to write reports and operate the switchboard.

You may need a Security Industry Authority licence to work in licenced premises since you work in front-line security. Most security agencies do not hire gatemen without an SIA licence and basic self-defence training.

skills and competencies

Some of the skills that a gateman needs include:

  • communication skills: as a gateman, you interact with many people, including employees, customers and visitors. You need precise and clear communication ability to address everyone appropriately. Communication skills help you address visitors politely and direct them to the right office. You also need interpersonal skills to collaborate with other security guards within the premises.
  • thinking on your feet: as a gateman, it is important to have quick thinking skills and a fast reaction time. Thinking on your feet can help you prevent the escalation of a problem. You also need to be a good decision-maker to avoid endangering other employees when dealing with a security breach or during emergencies.
  • tech-savvy: as a gateman, you need computer skills to monitor security cameras and operate various screening equipment at the gate. Your job also involves setting up the alarm system, which requires tech-savvy skills.
  • ability to remain calm under pressure: in emergencies, you deal with scared employees and chaos. As a gateman, you need to maintain your calm and assist people with injuries as you get help from law enforcement.
smiling male looking at mobile phone
smiling male looking at mobile phone


FAQs about working as a gateman

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