For many retail business owners, each day is filled with worries. Do you have the right employees? Are customers going to buy your products? Is your competition better than you? But one thing that all stores worry about is the theft of their investment. Many times when businesses are looking to cut costs, one of the first things to go is a reduction in loss prevention teams, which can lead to an increase in shoplifting and employee theft. And it’s not an insignificant loss: Employee theft has been costing businesses $50 billion annually (CNBC), more of which comes from employee theft than shoplifters..
Over the years we’ve had the pleasure of talking with thousands and thousands of business owners who are looking to protect their hard earned assets. In many cases we’ve been able to help them beef up their loss prevention strategies using technology, but we’ve also picked up a few of their best practices that we’d like to share.
- Have a set number of people in charge of the money:
Never let one person have end-to-end control of funds. When handling cash, keep a couple of people accountable for others and signing off when depositing money or other areas in your business. This will make sure that one person isn’t in charge of everything.
- Strategically plan your staff schedules:
When you are making the employees schedules, make sure you do not have too few people in the store during either opening or closing times. If something happens with the store there will be more people accountable for it. Also, when there are more eyes on someone it will make them reconsider doing something they will regret.
- Watch out for personal transactions:
Make it a policy to not let employees cash out any of their relatives or friends. This could be a big part of revenue lost; when employees want to help their family and friends save money. Always make sure that another person checks them out to avoid fraud or misuse of coupons.
Always have a manager’s approval on coupons and discounts to be used. This will prevent employees using expired coupons, or gift cards.
- Use technology to stay in touch:
One easy way is to have surveillance cameras targeting hard to see areas. Consider the latest technology that not only gives you a high definition recording, but also makes it available on your computer, tablet, or mobile phone… so you can keep an eye on things no matter where you are. Many systems also offer analytics that can alert you when people are detected in areas they shouldn’t be, and the ability to search video clips based on your criteria, almost like a google search for video.
Another thing that will keep your inventory and assets secure is to invest in an access control system. Many systems will give you control over who can access your buildings at certain times or even certain days. For example, if you have a shipment crew that comes in early in the morning you can give them access to the store ONLY during the hours they are scheduled to work. And the best part is you won’t have to worry about lost or stolen keys.
Let us help you keep your business safe! Contact us today for a free security consultation, and we’ll provide you with a custom solution designed to fit the unique needs of your business.