How to Prevent Retail Theft During the Holidays: Part Two

December 15th, 2016

Philadelphia retail theft

Photo: Fort George G. Meade Public Affairs Office, Flickr Creative Commons

‘Tis the season: The holidays are prime time for retailers to experience shrinkage due to employee and customer theft, making proper corporate training in Philadelphia crucial to protecting end-of-year profits. Philadelphia business owners should be aware of how employees steal and how to prevent employee theft. They should also engage in sound hiring practices, especially with seasonal staff.

When it comes to loss prevention, a well-trained staff is the first line of defense. But there are practical measures business owners can take to protect their stores from potential shoplifters:

  • Increase your customer service visibility – This is a win-win: your honest customers will appreciate the extra help and attention, and potential shoplifters will be deterred because they know your staff is watching them. This can take the form of:
    • Greeting customers as they enter the store, destroying the sense of anonymity and letting shoppers know the staff is attentive.
    • Having employees walk through the store, not just down the center or main aisles, but along the walls and rear of the store as well.
  • Keep your store clean, organized and well-lit – Keep shelves and displays tidy, install adequate lighting, and have clear aisles and sight lines. Stores that appear disorganized and run-down are more likely to be targeted by thieves since it gives the impression the staff is lazy and inattentive.
  • Strategically place commonly stolen items – Place targeted items in the front of the store, near the cash register, or another highly visible area.
  • Invest in anti-theft devices such as security cameras, security towers at the entrance, anti-theft tags on merchandise, and convex mirrors in corners of the store.
  • Dressing room policies – Limit the number of items a customer can bring into the dressing room. Train employees to verify that the customers leave with the same number of items they went in with. Dressing rooms should also be locked, thereby requiring customers to check in with a salesperson before they can use them.
  • Have a strong shoplifting policy and enforce it – Your policy should be clearly posted where employees and customers can see it, including in restrooms and dressing rooms.
  • Provide continued training for employees – They should know how to spot a potential shoplifter and how to handle a shoplifting situation safely and in accordance with company policy. This includes giving the suspected shoplifter a chance to pay for items by asking, “Are you ready to check out?” or “May I ring that up for you?” if they try to leave the store without paying.

Expert Corporate Training in Philadelphia

Know It All’s experts offer on-site loss prevention training for your management and staff. All training is performed by specialized experts and covers everything from customer service to workplace safety to safe hiring practices.

If your business can benefit from Philadelphia corporate training, call us today at (888) 281-9535.

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