As Christmas and fewer daylight hours approach, Alpha 1 is all to aware of the increased risk of stock loss over the winter months. Forbes recently published a list of 15 measures you can take that we whole-heartedly endorse. The second point is rather obvious and you can get in touch with us if you want to increase your physical security with our especially trained retail guards. Our Alpha Approach programme insures our guards are courteous and aware of the value of providing customer service when facing the public. We also give them a full brief of your company’s brand and values.
Without further delay, here’s what you can do to protect your business:
1. Run background checks and drug screenings — as allowed by local law — on all employees. (My company offers these, but so do others.)
2. If you’re extending your hours into high-risk times like late at night and early morning, add additional security measures and schedule more of your security personnel to a shift.
3. Increased transactions can mean more cash in the registers and store safe. Limit the amount of cash you have on hand by making daily bank deposits and having your security guards move cash.
4. Add loss prevention deterrents like a video surveillance system, increased lighting, signage about limited cash on hand, merchandise tags and shelf locks for high-dollar merchandise. Also, consider using access control to limit access to administrative back areas of the store.
5. Install intrusion prevention devices such as motion detectors and alarms. If you’re a luxury retailer, you should also consider fortifying your walls, floors and ceiling.
6. Secure all entrances and re-key your store regularly to avoid theft from past employees.
7. Train every employee on conflict resolution, how to spot shoplifters/robbers and how to react to workplace violence and active shooters.
8. Have a crowd control plan, especially during special sale events and heavy shopping days where long lines and overcrowding can lead to violence or theft. Consider staggered entry for customers to avoid reaching the maximum occupancy level for your store.
9. Make sure all store exits remain free and clear of merchandise for easy evacuations and access by law enforcement.
10. Secure all valuable equipment by mounting it to desks. Also, regularly inspect your point-of-sale (POS) equipment and credit card terminals to prevent tampering from skimming and other cybercrimes.
11. Maintain an open floorplan so associates have a clear line of sight and keep easily stolen or high-value merchandise close to the POS areas. Spread out high-value items to lessen the cost of a smash-and-grab theft.
12. Consider having your guards wear plain clothes to help surveil inside larger stores.
13. Make sure you are staffed at appropriate levels during peak times.
14. If your location does not already provide exterior security support, consider having your security officers patrol the car park.
15. Review shipping and receiving security to ensure you’re granting access only to vetted and approved deliveries.