15 March 2024

Door Supervisor Job Description

Door supervisors are visible outside many nightclubs, pubs and other types of hospitality venues up and down the country. They are responsible for checking IDs and tickets and enforcing dress codes. They are also responsible for ensuring venue capacities aren’t exceeded and removing any problematic guests, ideally before they cause trouble.

Door supervisors are heavily regulated, simply because this is a front-line security role. They often face the possibility of conflict and need to be able to handle a wide range of difficult situations. As a door supervisor, you need to be confident and able to assert yourself, as you may have to confront individuals while they are drunk or under the influence of drugs.

Door supervisor duties and responsibilities

Door supervisor duties and responsibilities

In your position as a door supervisor, you will be responsible for monitoring the door of a venue to ensure only those who are supposed to have access can enter. These are some of the responsibilities that will fall on your shoulders…

Door supervisors (also known as door staff, bouncers or doormen), typically have a range of responsibilities related to ensuring the safety and security of patrons and staff at establishments like bars, nightclubs, restaurants and other venues. 

Their primary role is to maintain order and prevent incidents that could lead to violence or other forms of disturbance. There are four licensing objectives, and it is the responsibility of door supervisors to support the designated premises supervisor (DPS), who is often the licensee in a hospitality venue, in meeting these requirements, as listed below:

  • the prevention of crime and disorder
  • public safety
  • the prevention of public nuisance
  • the protection of children from harm

The specific responsibilities of a door supervisor may vary depending on the establishment and local regulations, but generally include the following:

  • Checking identification: door supervisors often verify the age of customers by checking their IDs to ensure that they meet the legal drinking age requirements.
  • Controlling entry: door supervisors control the entry and exit of individuals, making sure that only authorised personnel and patrons are allowed into the establishment.
  • Enforcing dress code: some venues may have specific dress codes, and in such cases, door supervisors are responsible for ensuring that patrons adhere to these guidelines.
  • Crowd management: door supervisors monitor and manage the flow of customers to prevent overcrowding, maintain safe occupancy levels and ensure that emergency exits are not blocked.
  • Conflict resolution: door supervisors must be skilled in conflict resolution and de-escalation techniques to handle disputes, disagreements and unruly behaviour. They may need to use verbal communication to defuse potentially violent situations.
  • Response to incidents: in the event of fights, disturbances, medical emergencies or other related incidents, door supervisors need to respond quickly to restore order and provide assistance as needed. They will work closely with local law enforcement when necessary.
  • Monitoring intoxication: door supervisors are responsible for observing and identifying patrons who are overly intoxicated and may become a danger to themselves or others. They may refuse entry to such individuals or ask them to leave.
  • Security and safety: doors supervisors may be responsible for patrolling a venue, ensuring that fire exits are clear and checking for security breaches, such as unauthorised access.

What does a door supervisor do?

What does a door supervisor do?

A door supervisor will guard the door of a venue to make sure only authorised individuals can gain access. They also help to keep a venue compliant with local guidelines and legal regulations. For example, they might enforce capacity rules to stop the place from becoming overcrowded. They might also check IDs to ensure underage patrons cannot gain access. And finally, they might have to enforce dress codes and prevent outside beverages from being brought into the venue.

Skills and qualifications for a door supervisor

To work as a door supervisor at a licenced venue in the UK, you will need to hold an SIA accreditation  as a photocard licence. To gain your certification, you will need to enrol on a six-day course and pass the assessment. 

They will also need a first aid qualification too. The minimum requirement is Emergency First Aid at Work, which is a one day course costing about £80, although it is often rolled up into the cost of an overall Door Supervisor course by training providers and added on as an extra day.

Once you have successfully passed the course, you can then apply to the SIA for your photocard licence. This is valid for three years. Alongside your training, you will also need to pass the SIA checks, which include criminal background and mental health. 

Door supervisor core skills and competencies

Door supervisor core skills and competencies

To be successful in this role, you will need to have the following core skills and competencies:

  • Communication: effective communication with venue staff, other security personnel and local authorities is essential to maintain a safe and secure environment.
  • Ability to stay calm: situations can quickly become heated, and you might be the victim of verbal or physical attacks. It’s vital that you stay calm in the face of provocation.
  • Proactive and decisive: you may be required to take action dynamically, which means you need to be able to act on your own initiative.
  • Observational skills: you need to be able to identify when a patron might be out to cause trouble. You also need to be able to identify signs that someone is too intoxicated to allow entry.

Salary expectations for door supervisor roles

The average salary for an SIA door supervisor in the UK is around £22,000 per year. This is for a 40-hour week. You will have the option to work overtime to boost your earnings. As you progress in your career, you could earn up to £27,000 per year.