SIA, ESA Form New Foundation for Advancing Security Talent

The nonprofit organization is dedicated to connecting talented, motivated individuals with opportunities in the security technology and life-safety field.

DALLAS — The Security Industry Association (SIA) and the Electronic Security Association (ESA) have launched the Foundation for Advancing Security Talent (FAST), a new 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization designed to promote careers in the physical security technology and life-safety industry.

Created through a partnership of ESA and SIA, FAST was formed to connect passionate, innovative professionals with new opportunities in electronic security and life-safety.

”Whenever we talk to SIA members about their greatest challenges, they universally put recruiting talent into the security industry and workforce development at the top of the list,” says Pierre Trapanese, chairman of the SIA Board of Directors and a SSI Industry Hall of Fame inductee. “FAST will help our entire industry to be more competitive in what has become a ‘war for talent’ among all tech sectors. We are excited to partner with ESA to address an issue that we know is just as critical to the future of the industry as the continued development of technology.”

As security and life-safety companies embrace more advanced technologies, their education, skill and training needs grow, making workforce development one of the top challenges facing the industry. FAST seeks to help companies through:

  • Outreach to schools, colleges and universities to increase awareness of the exciting and rewarding careers available in security
  • Research on the industry’s workforce development needs and possible solutions
  • Continuing education resources to help those already in the industry stay current with rapidly emerging and evolving technologies

“The skilled labor shortage is reaching a critical point. We’re seeing climbing demand and shortfalls in applicant pools,” says Jamie Vos, president of ESA. “For some time now, we’ve been working to arm ESA Members with resources for becoming an employer of choice. However, as an industry, if we don’t do something impactful together – the long-term impact will be devastating. We are happy to join forces with SIA on such an important initiative.”

The new FAST website offers job seekers information about the security industry’s growth and unique position at the convergence of cutting-edge technology and a mission that matters, the types of roles available in the industry and what employers are looking for and a jobs board featuring immediate opportunities in security technology and life-safety. SIA and ESA members will be able to list jobs for free for the next 12 months to help the industry recover from the COVID-19 pandemic’s business impact.

The FAST Board of Directors — comprised of experts across the security and life-safety fields — oversees the foundation and includes:

  • Neil Atha, vice president, Atronic Alarms
  • Keith Baird, senior director of sales, Resideo
  • Paul Hevesy, vice president, organizational effectiveness, Stanley Black & Decker
  • Michael Keen, vice president, commercial product and talent, ADT Commercial
  • Erin Mann, marketing and customer experience manager, multifamily, Allegion Canada
  • Brendan McFall, technical engineering manager, Northland Controls
  • Shuvankar Roy, vice president, Xfinity operations strategy, Comcast
  • Kerri Sutherland, human resources business partner, Axis Communications
  • Yaron Zussman, general manager, Magos America

FAST is committed to providing companies in the security technology and life-safety industry tools to boost their workforce development efforts through research, education, promotion and more. The organization is also looking to partner with as many companies as possible to advance the security industry.

Learn more about getting involved with FAST activities on the Partner With FAST page. FAST’s school and outreach programs, research and resources are funded by individual and organizational donations. Learn more and donate to FAST here.

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