When it comes to financial losses, many business owners are concerned about threats like superfluous customer returns and shoplifting, when there are actually dozens of ways companies bleed money every day.
However, by having your security team focus on preventing multiple types of loss, you can keep your business stable. Here are three common sources of loss your security team can watch out for.
1. Employee Theft
Sometimes, the same people you hire to take care of your customers are the same individuals running your finances into the ground. Employee theft is an incredibly common problem in the United States, with studies showing that 75 percent of workers have stolen from their employer at least once.
Employees can steal from businesses either directly or indirectly. While some workers help themselves to cash directly from the till, others take advantage of employee discount programs, borrow products directly from store shelves, or stay clocked in longer than they actually worked.
Fueled by justifications like low wages or long hours, employees who are familiar with the system are especially adept at pilfering profits, especially when they are cross trained in multiple positions within an organization.
For instance, a cashier who occasionally helps with nightly bookkeeping may be able to cover their own tracks more easily, and a freight stocker could easily alter an invoice to leave out a box of product they intend to take home.
Fortunately, loss prevention teams can be incredibly helpful in identifying and resolving employee theft. In addition to monitoring employees during their shifts, security teams can also watch for employees ringing themselves up, setting aside product, or mismanaging returned inventory.
If issues are discovered, loss prevention teams can continue to track employees to gather evidence, making it easier for employers to fire dishonest employees with just cause.
Loss prevention officers can also discreetly report problems to employers so business owners can make immediate changes to prevent future losses.
2. Vendor Fraud
Most businesses rely on outside vendors to deliver a selection of products. While many vendors count products carefully, verify invoices, and do everything possible to keep their business customers happy, some try to tip the scales in their favor by committing vendor fraud.
Common examples of vendor fraud include delivering less product than is ordered, submitting invoices more than once, tampering with receiving operations, and bribing store employees to help them to cover discrepancies.
Since vendors aren’t store employees and may report to different stores each day, it can be hard to spot problems if you aren’t paying attention. However, your security team can help you to keep track of receiving areas to monitor deliveries, making vendor fraud less likely to occur.
In addition to auditing receiving reports, loss prevention officers can also keep an eye on receiving teams to spot irregularities in deliveries. In some instances, businesses even provide receiving reports to security teams, so they can check for duplicate billings or vendors that aren’t on approved lists.
3. Product Damage
As merchandise is stocked in your store, handled by guests, and stored, it can become damaged and marked as unsellable, which can hurt your ability to turn a profit. Improper handling, poorly designed displays, and even cramped storage spaces can pave the way for product damage, which is why it pays to have your loss prevention team keep an eye out for trouble.
As you monitor your damaged products, keep an eye out for merchandise that typically withstands the most abuse. Ask your security team to keep an eye on the areas in your store where these items are displayed or stored to check for the source of damage. By identifying how products are becoming damaged, you may be able to make changes that protect your inventory.
If you need a security team you can count on, give us a call today. Here at Trident Security, we focus on thorough, ongoing training, and our loss prevention offers can detect and diffuse threats, protecting your bottom line.