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Career Planning

"What types of careers are available in the

security, protection and law enforcement industries?" 

"Which one is the right fit for me?"

"I've been working in the industry for a while and

am ready to take my career further or make a pivot

but what are the options and how do I get there?"


The answers to these questions aren't always straightforward to find and it can be challenging to navigate the increasingly complex options in order to determine the best career path for each person.


​How to plan your career:

  1. Figure out where you are in your career

  2. Figure out where you want to go: short term (1-2 years) and long term (5-10 years)

  3. Then figure out what training, professional designations, years of experience or other requirements you need to get there. It may take many steps, so take each one at a time starting with the most relevant and accessible. Use our Career Maps below to help you figure it out!

Career Streams

There are 7 main streams in the security, protection and law enforcement fields that we have specifically highlighted as these are the most common. These streams are strongly linked but at the same time are distinct disciplines. You can either advance along each stream, or jump over into another stream over the course of your career.


The following sections explain what each stream does and show career maps illustrating what different possible positions are available in each career stream and what professional designations, qualifications or advanced training is recommended to get there. The positions are general as there is such a wide variety of positions, titles and roles for each company, but they are specific enough to provide high level guidance. Please note that the training and designations listed here are not exhaustive.


Private Security

This discipline is most often used to describe roles that secure physical spaces, people and assets. There are a broad range of positions in this discipline ranging from entry level security guard to executive level director of security. Physical security handles protection of persons (body guard), access control, detecting and preventing loss of assets (loss protection), responding to security alarms (mobile response), special events and crowd management, armed transportation, bylaw, law and policy enforcement and more. Read the article so what exactly does a security guard do?

Basic Training Course:

Alberta Basic Security Training (ABST) > REGISTER

Advanced Training Courses:

Defensive Tactics Handcuffing & Baton (PPCT) > REGISTER

Tactical Communications > REGISTER

Tactical First Aid > REGISTER

Personal Risk Recognition & Response > REGISTER

Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design > REGISTER

Firearms Safety Course (PAL Licence) > REGISTER

Professional Designations:

ASIS Associate Protection Professional (APP)

ASIS Physical Security Professional (PSP)

ASIS Certified Protection Professional (CPP)

IFPO Certified Protection Officer (CPO)

IFPO Certified in Security Supervision and Management (CSSM)

IAHSS Certified Healthcare Protection Administrator Basic/ Advanced/ Supervisor (CHPA)

LPF Loss Prevention Qualified (LPF)

LPF Loss Prevention Certified (LPQ)


Private Investigations

This security discipline describes the types of roles that carry out internal investigations such as insurance, financial and employment / human resources. They also undertake internal investigations into theft, loss, fraud and many other types of activity that businesses want to discourage and control. Investigative security roles are quite broad and offer diverse opportunities in business sectors such as retail, insurance, financial, legal and government.

Basic Training Course:

Alberta Investigators Training (AIT) > REGISTER

Advanced Training Courses:

Defensive Tactics Handcuffing & Baton (PPCT) > REGISTER

Tactical Communications > REGISTER

Tactical First Aid > REGISTER

Personal Risk Recognition & Response > REGISTER

Professional Designations:

ACFE Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE)

ASIS Professional Certified Investigator (PCI)

Career Map Coming Soon

Peace Officers

Peace officers add flexibility to the law enforcement community, performing varied roles that assist in maintaining peace in our communities. They perform a number of duties field involves enforcing provincial statutes as well as the bylaws of the municipality depending on the type of peace office they are.

There are two levels of Peace Officers in Alberta: Alberta Peace Officers and Community Peace Officers.

  • Alberta peace officers (fish and wild life officers, sheriffs, highway enforcement, protection services for government officials, corrections, prisoner transport and court security, regulatory inspection and investigative officers)

  • Community peace officers (hospitals, municipalities and counties, automated traffic enforcement, animal protection agencies, post secondary institutions, indigenous communities)


Advanced Training Courses:

Alberta Community Peace Officer Requirements & Recertification Training

Career Map Coming Soon

Police Officers

This field of law enforcement involves educating, preventing crime and enforcing laws and bylaws. It includes municipal agencies such as the Edmonton Police Service (EPS)Calgary Police Service (CPS), national agencies such as the RCMP, and private agencies such as the CN Police Service. They have many different units, teams and specialties such as: 

Application Requirements & Training:

EPS application minimum requirements

CPS application minimum requirements

RCMP application requirements


Incident Planning & Response

This security discipline describes roles that plan for the unexpected. Common titles include business continuity manager/director, incident response planner, etc. These types of roles develop and manage plans that will enable a business to continue operations despite some level of unexpected event occurring such as flooding, fire, system outages etc. Plans are often expected to guide a business to full recovery after such an event. There is very often a strong information technology component to these roles, and they are increasing in numbers of opportunities over recent years.

Professional Designations:

DRI Associate Business Continuity Professional (ABCP)

DRI Certified Functional Continuity Professional (CFCP)

DRI Certified Business Continuity Professional (CBCP)

DRI Master Business Continuity Professional (MBCP)

cyber security.png

Cyber Security

This security discipline describes roles that secure information technology systems and information. There are a broad range of positions in this discipline ranging from entry level IT security analyst to executive level chief information security officer. Cyber security offers a very large range of employment opportunities with the majority of industry sectors needing this type of security to support business.

Professional Designations:

ISC2 Systems Security Certified Practitioner (SSCP)

ISC2 Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP)

ISC2 Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)

SANS offers over 30 GIAC certifications - see their career map

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