Mall cops, formally known as mall security guards, help protect mall assets and keep a watch over the safety of visitors and employees. While deterring criminal activity represents the main objective of a mall cop, they also help investigate cases of theft and then provide essential information related to the crime to local police.
For most mall cop positions, a high school diploma or equivalent will suffice. The majority of the training occurs on-the-job. Some of the skills learned during on-the-job training include report writing, deterring crime and first aid. Mall cops must also excel at public relations, as they spend a large majority of their shift talking to mall visitors and employees. Mall cops should also have good communication skills and the ability to remain calm under pressure.
Mall security guards earned an average annual salary of $23,920 in May 2010, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This equates to an average hourly wage of $11.50 According to the data published by the BLS, mall cops representing the lowest 10 percent of the field earned an average annual salary of $17,130 in May 2010, while those in the top 10 percent earned an average annual salary of $41,240.
Variances in the average expected salary occurred based on the state chosen for employment. For instance, mall cops in California earned an average annual salary of $26,790 in May 2010. Washington and Alaska ranked among the top-paying states for mall cops and security professionals. Those employed in Washington earned an average $37,190 annually, while those employed in Alaska earned $35,470.
Other variances in the expected salary for a mall security guard can occur, such as variances related to metropolitan location of the position. For instance, those employed in Ithaca, New York earned the highest average annual salary in May 2010, coming in at an annual salary of $46,740. Other top-paying metropolitan areas for the profession in May 2010 included Seattle, Washington and Amarillo, Texas.
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