Jeremy Davies: putting security on your agenda?

Jeremy Davies, managing director of Garden Centre Security, talks to Garden Centre Retail about putting security on the agenda.

The BRC (British Retail Consortium) have recently launched their latest Best Practice Guideline for retailers, Tackling violence against staff. The guideline is intended to provide helpful advice to retailers of all sizes to help protect their staff from violence, threatening behaviour and abuse.

They demonstrate action which can be taken by retailers to keep staff safe, from safety conscious design of the working environment to conflict management training and ensuring that there are effective procedures in place for when an incident occurs.

Violence continues to be an unacceptable threat to the retail sector?s three million employees. The latest BRC Retail Crime Survey found that shop staff were victims of almost 36,000 incidents of violence or abuse in 2012-13. In the wake of this latest security orientated guideline, it is opportune for businesses to ensure security & loss prevention is on the weekly/monthly business agenda. Remembering of course, that it can be easier to increase profit through reduction of operating costs than increase turnover.

There is a vast array of security protocols that you and your business could benefit from. Below, I have highlighted some of the more important aspects of security that you may want to consider.

  1. Add Business Security & Loss Prevention to your Agenda.

I have already stated the benefits of this, but it is definitely worth a second mention ? especially due to the recorded high levels of incidents in the last couple of years.

  1. Business CCTV Monitoring

Is our CCTV System fully working? Does it cover all the access areas and key thoroughfares? Are the external cameras capable of night vision? Do we have 30 days? recording and do we know how to take images off of the recording device if the police need them? Are the images clear? Can they be used by the police if needed for evidence?

  1. Preventing Shoplifting

How can we protect our stock from customer theft? Do we have a security tagging system? If not, why not? Time to revisit this and look at the latest solutions available. Are we using the full range of security tags available? Have we checked? Are our staff fully aware of what to protect? Do we have a tagging policy that lists these key products? Are our staff aware of how to approach customers?

  1. Cash Handling

Is our process to handle cash secure? Are there any weak points where we may be a soft target to a robbery? Do we have a secure cash office? How is money extracted from the tills and how often? What is the maximum amount of cash held in the till at any one point in the day? Is this too high?

  1. Exit interviews

Are we conducting exit interviews when staff leave us? Are we missing the opportunity to get direct feedback that may identify internal theft and fraud? These are some very important factors that we all need to consider if we would like to increase the level of security in our centres. It is easy to overlook these details, but together they remain paramount in cracking down on security threats, and incidents that could be to the business.

If you would like further help and advice on the points to include in your business?s security & loss prevention policy and a copy of the ?Tackling Violence Against Staff Guidelines?, feel free to contact me, and I?d be happy to answer your questions.There are many elements to protecting your business from a security perspective, which are easily adhered to if you are given the chance to understand and appreciate them.

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