With Kimberly Anderson-Matich, security is a family affair. Her father, H.P. Anderson, who has over 45 years of experience in the security field, owned Continental Security, once the largest and most respected security company in Arizona. Now, she is the owner of Anderson Security Agency, the most professional security company in Arizona. “I guess you could say it’s in my blood,” she says.
Anderson-Matich learned the security business from the bottom up by working as a receptionist, a dispatcher and an accountant, and eventually managing Chandler-based Southwest Security. After a large company bought most of the Valley’s security companies in the early 1990s, Anderson-Matich noticed a drop in professionalism. She remembered how her father had brought respectability to the industry. “Our industry,” she says, “had an image as untrained, unprofessional rent-a-cops. We didn’t want that image associated with our name.”
After two years of detailed planning, Anderson-Matich started her own security company in November 1994. In the beginning, she was told by many that the industry had changed, that companies were scaling back and security was not a priority. She forged ahead, scooping up temporary security work that many other security companies were turning down. Anderson Security’s sales in its first year totaled $ 1 million and have grown by nearly 25 percent every year since. Projected sales for 2002 are $10 million.
In 1999, the agency added the first privately owned mobile command unit, utilized for on-site training, client-company emergencies, recruiting and community programs such as free fingerprinting of children. The company also has one of the only 24-hour dispatch centers able to handle emergency requests, client concerns and direct officers in the field.
Anderson Security has more than 400 full-time and part-time officers working, on average, 12,000 hours a week at various Valley locations, including Salt River Project (SRP), Arizona Department of Revenue, Bell Ford, Blue Cross Blue Shield, temporary construction sites, and many gated communities.
Not all security officers are trained equally. The state requires eight hours of officer training. Anderson Security has its own training academy, training its officers an additional 72 hours in a variety of areas, including law and legal, CPR and firearms. Anderson is also very selective about those chosen to become a part of their team. “You can work for many security companies in Arizona, but that doesn’t mean you can work for Anderson. Our hiring requirements are so stringent that only one out of 10 who apply is accepted.”
After September 11, many companies reassessed their need for security. As the terrorist attacks were unfolding, Anderson Security was inundated with calls from clients requesting additional service. SRP brought in outside consultants to evaluate and critique security at its locations: Anderson Security passed with flying colors. “We have also developed and now offer to our clients and security officers courses of instruction on anti-terrorism and workplace violence to help increase awareness.”
It is not money that drives Anderson-Matich. The Arizona native and mother of five receives satisfaction in the challenge of being a successful female business owner in a male-dominated business. “When I first started, people told me I couldn’t do it,” she says. “My goal was then, and still is, to have the most professional security company in Arizona. I have put 150 percent into everything I have done and it’s paid off.”
Anderson Security: a safe bet when safety is needed.
HOW TO CONTACT:
8900 N. 22nd Ave., Ste. 102
Phoenix, Arizona 85021
Ph: (602) 331-7000 Fax: (602) 331-1785
Web site: www.andersonsecurity.com
Source – Encyclopedia of Experts 2002