The purpose of The Security Benchmark Report is to create a database to measure security teams and organizations versus their peers, both among the industry as a whole, as well as among individual sectors for even better comparison. Security’s number one goal with The Security Benchmark Report is to showcase the value of security within the enterprise, as well as be a business enabler to our readers’ security programs.

The editorial project aims to allow security leaders to ask, “How does my team/ role/ responsibilities/ budget/ initiatives/ etc. compare with peer organizations?”

All information within this report is based on The Security Benchmark Report survey responses. Organizations may only fill out the survey once for a particular company or agency. Security programs within the rankings must be responsible, at least in part, for physical security within the enterprise. The Security Benchmark Report does not include contract security companies, guarding companies or those without direct responsibility for security within their enterprise.

The Security Benchmark Report is broken down into a general overview comparing all respondents’ data with one another, as well as by sectors. Respondents are asked which sector their overall enterprise resides in; while the survey has a choice of 22 market sectors, not all market sectors are chosen by respondents each year, or not enough in one individual category to report on. Therefore, in many cases, and for better comparisons, some market sectors are combined in the report. Combined sectors are labeled as such, and combinations may vary each year.

Sectors with little participation may be excluded from the Sector Reports, but are included in the overall report. To attempt to make the most meaningful comparisons possible, in some cases, particular comparisons/ charts were left out of sector groupings if the data varied too greatly from one respondent to the next.

Security encourages all security leaders and organizations to participate in the free editorial survey that makes up The Security Benchmark Report. If you don’t see your enterprise’s primary market sector represented, we encourage you to fill out the survey and ask your peers to fill out the survey as well. The more organizations and security professionals that fill out the survey, the more robust the data. Each year, the survey opens in February and closes in July. As a benefit to filling out The Security Benchmark Report survey, security leader respondents receive a full report of responses with more detailed information beyond what is covered in Security’s November digital edition.

When calculating certain statistics, including “security budget as a percent of revenue” and “security budget per employee,” high and low outliers were removed before calculations in order to present a cleaner comparison.

While we recognize that security roles, responsibilities and programs can vary widely from one organization to another in terms of maturity, position within the enterprise, size of staff, budget, etc., Security has made every effort, due to input from readers as well as Editorial Advisory Board members, to break down and compare organizations in a meaningful, valuable way.