While working this type of position for a retail store you may be required to go undercover and catch people stealing smaller items red-handed or monitor a large store through a security system, but working to prevent loss in a hotel is a bit different. You take on the role not only of preventing theft, but of a security guard as well.
While most positions in this field will not require you to have a college degree, most will require a high school diploma. Many people are able to find an entry-level position open at a local hotel and easily get a foot in the door by simply applying at the right time, but for others it can be more difficult to find an open position. Larger hotels tend to be the easiest options for those with little to no experience because they have a need for more people in this position and they are more likely to have experienced guards on hand who can train someone new.
If you want to increase your chances of getting hired for loss prevention jobs or want to raise your credentials and knowledge so you could be considered for a position in loss prevention management for a larger hotel that would pay a higher salary, consider going to a community college for classes or even getting your bachelor's degree. Major in something related to law enforcement such as Criminal Justice so that your skills closely match up to the knowledge that is useful in this field.
Coursework in communications is also valuable, since this job requires a lot of interaction with the public. You have to be able to interact with others in a friendly manner and deal with conflict between others without escalating the situation. This requires quick problem solving and creative thinking, which are personality features that will help you advance over others in this field once you do land that first job.
While education is helpful, this is one of those fields where your personality and general character will take you much further than book smarts. There can be a lot of problems that occur inside and around a hotel since you are dealing with a wide variety of people every single day. If you cannot stay alert and jump to action quickly to solve problems, you will probably not last long in this field.
Of course, those are all marketable skills to play up when you go in for a hotel loss prevention job interview! Every hotel currently in operation has a use for some type of loss prevention personnel, so start checking with your local hotels and then go online to job boards that specialize in this industry. You will find ample opportunity to get started in this field.