Employee & staff theft is one of the toughest problems for any business owner to deal with. It’s easy to see your team as a small family, and managers are often hesitant to break that trusting relationship, or souring morale by levelling accusations at employees. This is especially the case in small or independently owned businesses, where managers can’t hide behind orders sent from on high, and who often have a personal financial stake in the success of the business. Because of this it is one of the hardest types of losses to completely prevent. Nevertheless, as a business owner it is vital to tackle head on, and in case you are in any doubt here are 5 pressing reasons why…
- It costs businesses a lot of money. Some of the statistics for theft are ufortunately rather eye watering. A 2013 report on the retail sector by Centre for Retail Research suggested that staff theft cost businesses £1.6 Billion annually. Of particular interest to light fingered staff were alcohol products, as well as branded goods that provide an easier potential for reselling. Interestingly, reports also suggest that some traditional targets of theft such as razorblades and batteries no longer make up such a large proportion of losses.
- Seriously, it costs businesses a LOT of money. OK, so I might be overdoing it trying to drive this point home here, but it really is a massive issue. The same CRR report listed staff theft as the second most costly cause of retail crime overall, making up around 30% of total losses. Only customer theft caused more, with losses from serious concerns such as armed robbery and card fraud accounting for a comparatively small proportion.
- Costs have to be passed on to someone. Shops don’t run as charities, and money lost from one source has to be made up elsewhere. The 2010 CRR report, as quoted in the Guardian, suggested that on average UK consumers have to spend £180 extra each year to cover the cost of retail theft as a whole. With pressure on pricing now more instense than ever thanks to the internet, cutting out these losses can only help keep your prices competitive.
- We have it bad here in the UK. The same CRR report looked at levels of theft across many European countries and found that losses from staff were the highest right here in the UK. Make of that what you will, it just goes to show how pressing the issue is.
- They’re potentially making off with lots of stuff. The 2010 report examined the average amounts shoplifters made off with from UK businesses. Whilst the average haul for theiving customers was £93, the report suggested the amount for staff members was significantly higher- £1,988! There are several potential reasons for this, including small scale staff crimes being underreprted, and staff members being able to stick accumulate their gains over a long period of time. The warning remains however, that the inside access they have to your business allows them to seek much more ambitious targets, and larger scale returns.
SpyCameraCCTV stocks a wide range of CCTV systems suitable for protecting your retail business, running from the imposing to the discreet. Larger visible systems with dome cameras often form an effective deterrent against theft, but sneaky employees can often pick up on where the blindspots in the coverage are. Our tiny spy cameras are ideal for covertly recording areas like interactions with the tills, or hidden away corners of a stock warehouse. An effective combination of the two is the best way to make sure you aren’t part of these statistics.