International Security Driver Association (ISDA) for VDI Graduates
We would like to introduce VDI graduates to the International Security Driver Association (ISDA). ISDA’s mission is to provide and support an international forum of protective services providers who share knowledge for the ultimate purpose of enhancing professional and business standards. ISDA serves the protective services community with an emphasis on secure transportation and security driving.
ISDA is Not New
Although the association is new, the concept is not. As a VDI graduate, you are part of a 40-year tradition.
During that time, the security community has (via the old Scotti School), and continues (via VDI) to send their personnel to be certified by the ISDA process. In fact, it is the market that refers to the ISDA process as certification. The ISDA certifications are the classic business model of the market dictating the course of action.
ISDA is the next step in the evolution of the industry and was created to recognize the experience, skill, and knowledge of those who have made a commitment to their profession.
ISDA offers two levels of membership: ISDA Basic and Certified Membership. ISDA offers eligible members certification in security driving and secure transportation. As a VDI graduate with a minimum of two years of experience in the profession, you qualify for this level of membership.
Most of the industry-offered training is not certification. Rather, it is training to a certificate. Although a training certificate is valuable, it is not a certification as defined by the credentialing organizations that are the standards in all other professions. The quality and legitimacy of certification are determined by the standards used to govern the program.
Your VDI training complies with the process and guidelines as defined by credentialing organizations and standards that are recognized in all other industries. That process requires a test of knowledge and skill, combined with experience. As a VDI graduate, your skills have been measured to an objective, documented standard, which is the highest in the profession. It is time to be recognized for that accomplishment.
To complete the secure transportation certification process, you will need to join the ISDA, and document that you have a minimum of two years’ experience, and Red Cross first aid, CPR, and AED training and take a knowledge test.
ISDA Member Benefits
The ISDA Protective Services Roadmap to Success
Members receive the ISDA Roadmap To Success, a three-stage guide to defining, growing and enhancing your success. The Roadmap is available only to ISDA members at https://isdacenter.org/isda-roadmap/.
In 2019 ISDA members supported the Roadmap Checklist with 38 online and downloadable documents. All the articles are written by EP/Secure Transportation practitioners with an average of 18 years of experience. The 38 articles share their experiences – the good – the bad and the expensive – with the hope of preventing fellow ISDA members from making the same mistakes.
In 2019, ISDA listed over 250 job opportunities. From the Job Opportunities, ISDA created metrics on the skills, knowledge, and level experience employers are demanding.
The ISDA Knowledge Center
Although there are no Metrics that cover “Sharing Knowledge,” in 2019, the amount of information and knowledge shared by our members is awe-inspiring. There are over 400 exchanges of knowledge encompassing – Armored Vehicles – the Business of Protection – Surveillance Detection – Executive Protection – Celebrity Protection. The knowledge is shared via Webinars – Articles – YouTube – Podcasts – Books.
Executive Protection and Secure Transportation Magazine
Starting in the mid-1980s, the Scotti School published a quarterly newsletter for the Protective Service community. The Newsletter and Executive Protection and Secure Transportation Magazines (EPSD) is one of the oldest Protective Services publication in the profession. It is a platform for our members to share knowledge and market products and services. In 2019 we sent out eight Executive Protection and Secure Transportation Magazines that were viewed by over 50,000 practitioners.
The ISDA Member Newsletter
Along with the EPSD magazine, ISDA Members receive private newsletters. In 2019 we sent fourteen member-only newsletters that covered the news that affected the EP/Secure Transportation community. The Newsletters covered a wide range of subjects: Business Metrics, Corporate Executive Protection Strategy, Armored Vehicles, to lessons learned from Vehicle Ambushes.
ISDA Training Directory
We created a directory of ISDA members who offer training. The directory is available on our website and in a PDF. We have marketed the directory through-out our Network.
In 2019, we offered our members programs that assisted their marketing efforts. We understand that for those who have acquired the skills and knowledge to compete in the marketplace, their next challenge is getting the Experience, Skill, and Knowledge (ESK) to the marketplace.
ISDA created a platform for our members to use the most powerful and proven marketing tool available – word-of-mouth. ISDA also supplies protective services providers’ business data that will assist them in marketing and operational planning.
Metrics – Data
The Protective Services business is continuously evolving. We (ISDA) realize that strategic decision making is a significant factor in mitigating risk. Sound decisions require timely and relevant information. To meet the needs of the membership, ISDA has supplied members with operational and business data that has assisted in the preparation of benchmarking, marketing, and operational planning.
We also created White papers that assisted the – growth – branding- marketing capabilities of our members.
In 2019 we featured 9 ISDA members on the ISDA and SecurityDriver websites, EP/Security Driver Magazine, and throughout the ISDA network. Their stories are read by not only the ISDA membership but also by our Network of over 15,000 security practitioners, all with interest in secure transportation and protective services.
These are a few Spotlights:
Author Spotlight – member Sandi Davies, “Women in the Security Profession.”
ToolKit Resource Center
A phrase you often hear “Tools for the Toolbox.” A metaphor for a collection of helpful information that can be used by practitioners.
ISDA supplies members with checklists, resources, and tools that assist them in the day-to-day work environment.
ISDA White Papers
The ISDA team researches the protective services profession, supplying the members with White Papers that have become standards in the profession. The Papers are free for members.
The ISDA Book Give-Away Program, Passing it Forward
As a component of the ISDA continuing education program, we ask ISDA members and associates who are authors and publishers to donate books to the membership. The ISDA gave away books valued at over $2000 FREE to its members.
ISDA offered courses to the membership, subjects such as:
- Executive Vehicles
- Basics of armored vehicles
The ISDA YouTube Channel
The International Security Driver Association YouTube channel was created in April 2016 to continue our mission of sharing knowledge.
In 2019 we connected members that offered job opportunities with members looking for opportunities, an interesting note; our members that can supply opportunities all mention how hard it is to find qualified security drivers.
We are aware that many of our members work in other sectors of the business. To meet the professional needs of those members, ISDA highlighted other areas of the profession. As an example: Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security.
- The Roadmap will become an online learning program.
- ISDA is researching and will produce a Members White Paper outlining EP/Secure Transportation salary structure and the IRS and the Department of Labor laws affecting sub contacting salaries.
- We will produce the first-ever EP/Security Driver Training Survey.
- ISDA will create marketing data and framework that can be used in brochures, websites or Social Media marketing.