How Do I Know If I Have A Stock Loss Problem?

In retail stock losses
are an unfortunate part of business and they usually arise from three
main areas: external theft (shoplifting), internal (employee) theft,
and human error. With this in mind, here are some tell-tale signs
that you might have a stock loss problem.

Your outgoings
(stock buying) are increasing but your sales are static

Under normal
circumstances apart from the initial set up, money spent on stock
(outgoings) should have a direct correlation with sales made. If the
figures don’t add up or you’re spending more on stock than you’re
selling, then chances are, you have a stock loss problem.

You notice empty
cartons, containers, or hangers throughout your store

Keep a close eye out
for cartons, containers, or empty clothes hangers located within your
store. We’ve seen empty mobile phone boxes stuffed inside toilet
cisterns and empty food packages in staff lockers. This is usually a
sure fire indication that something isn’t right, so carry out regular
checks, including staff locker searches.

Your store has been
the victim of shoplifting before

If you’re an easy
target the word soon gets around. After all shoplifters like most
criminals will always look for the easy or soft option. Therefore if
you have been a victim before, don’t assume it won’t happen again,
because it probably will or worse still already is.

Your cash drawer
never balances

If at the end of the
day you come to cash up and you continually experience shorts and/or
overages then it’s a good indication that a staff member might be
helping themselves to funds. A one off occasionally could be put down
to human error, but when it happens regularly, often with a
particular member of staff, then you might need to have that
conversation with them.

High number of voids
and refunds

Similarly if a
particular member of staff is carrying out a large number of voids
(no sales) or refunds then as a store owner or manager you might want
to question why this is occurring. Obviously if it’s on a dedicated
customer service till then this may be acceptable. However if the
till is purely for sales only, then this should be a red flag.

Shipments aren’t
being thoroughly checked

When people are under
time pressure it’s all too easy to miss stuff and/or cut corners. It
could be that stock has been processed that actually hasn’t arrived
in store. Alternatively it might be that computerised adjustments
have been made to stock balances when the stock itself is physically
in store. According to recent surveys into stock losses and their
causes, one group suggested that as much as 15-20% of all stock
losses occur through human error.

As with most of these
indicators, they can easily be prevented by having the right security
measures in place. If your stock losses are growing then why not talk
to MA Security. We’ve helped many business sort out their stock
losses by helping them to implement better security measures or
carrying out security audits. So call us today on 1300 020 406
and take the first steps towards better loss prevention.

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