Making the local OSPAs work

Issue 2/3 2023 Editor's Choice, News & Events, Associations

I was thrilled to receive an invitation to attend this year’s Outstanding Security Performance Awards (OSPAs) in the United Kingdom.

The OSPAs are a global awards scheme with a difference; they take the issues of being ethical and transparent seriously. The organisers do not appoint the judges, they are instead appointed by the leading security associations in the country. The judges also agree to mark independently to an ethics policy and have to declare a conflict of interest on every mark sheet.

There is an ethical sponsorship policy too, and all of the policies are published on their website. What makes it so special is that it is truly global recognition, with the OSPAs currently run in 16 countries, and for the first time, this year Namibia will also be celebrated. I also appreciate that there are different categories that appeal to different parts of the security sector — individuals, teams, organisations and initiatives, covering in-house, contract as well as public and private.

The important role that security professionals play is greatly underestimated. Often working long hours under tremendous amounts of pressure, they sacrifice much to make our world a safe and secure place to live, work and relax in. Hence, I indeed felt grateful to be part of an event that recognized and celebrated their hard work and dedication.

I was amazed by the grandeur of the event and the effort the organisers made in making the nominees feel that they were superstars. The venue was beautifully decorated, and the atmosphere was electric with excitement and anticipation. I looked around, and I could see people from different parts of the industry, all celebrating the other nominees and making meaningful connections.

The theme of comradery was emphasised further when the organisers remembered those members who had lost their lives in the line of duty throughout the year, unfortunately, a regular reality that we as security professionals need to live with. During the rest of the evening, it was heart-warming to see the joy on the faces of the winners as they received their awards. It was evident that the recognition they received was not just a pat on the back but a validation of their hard work and dedication to the industry.

As I watched the ceremony, I realized how crucial it is to celebrate the achievements of security professionals. I kept thinking to myself, “If only we could replicate this in South Africa.” Where else in the world do you have so few, doing so much for so many? Who more than they, deserve the recognition, the thank you and the motivation?

It takes support from an entire industry to make an event like this happen. This year will be the second year the OSPAs are held in South Africa and they need us as an industry to get behind our people and help make a difference. First by nominating those great individuals in your organisations that go beyond the call of duty, and secondly through help sponsoring the event to make it something remarkable.

Details of how to support the event, including sponsorship opportunities, can be found at Let us get behind our remarkable people in our industry.

OSPA SA details

Entries to the 2023 South Africa Outstanding Security Performance Awards (OSPAs) will close on the 18th of April, so do not delay in preparing your nominations.

Entry is free and nominations are invited in the following categories:

1. Outstanding Contract Security Company (Guarding).

2. Outstanding Security Consultant.

3. Outstanding Security Installer/Integrator.

4. Outstanding New Security Product.

5. Outstanding Risk Management Solution.

6. Outstanding Security Equipment Manufacturer.

Read more about the categories and enter at A panel of leading industry figures will select winners from finalists. Winners will be presented with their trophies in collaboration with Securex, South Africa on Wednesday 7th June 2023.

Sponsorship opportunities are available for those organisations interested in associating their brand with excellence and best practice, providing an opportunity to reach thousands of security industry professionals before, during and after the event. Sponsors will be profiled not only in South Africa, but also around the world. View the sponsorship brochure at*ospa1.

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