For many clothing retailer’s, fashion and brand image are a crucial marketing tool designed to entice customers to make purchases with increasing regularity. New fashions are systematically introduced to keep customers interested in the next and new trends and styles. Employees are therefore encouraged to dress the part- wearing the latest trends and hottest new items- turning them into walking billboards of free advertising.
To encourage the employees to wear the store or brand clothing can come from a few different streams. One way is to make a dress code mandate to only wear proprietary branded clothing to work. To achieve this, employees may be given generous employee discounts on their purchases, or they may be given a clothing allowance.
Both are cost effective ways for an employee to dress the part while at work. Sometimes, though, these benefits can be taken advantage of and, if not properly monitored, can cause an opening in your store’s clothing security.
The downside of having employees dress in store clothing is that it makes it harder to spot an employee who is stealing merchandise. Because more products are in the hands of an employee’s personal wardrobe, tracking every item can turn into a daunting task.
Some retailers have turned to requiring all employee purchases to be made with the store’s proprietary credit card. This makes it easier for someone to track all purchases by transaction and sku number in case there is a question. It is, unfortunately not very practical if a store does not have their own credit card.
The next idea would be to sign off on all employee purchases, not only at the time they are rung up, but at the time the purchase leaves the store. This helps to ensure that no additional product finds its way into the bag without being paid for first.
In the case of a clothing allowance, a manger should facilitate the process. The clothing in question should have the price tags removed by the manager and kept for record retention. By having a manager remove the price tags, the employee cannot come back later on and try to refund the clothing for a store credit, cash, etc. Doing so would not only constitute as fraud by the employee, but could seriously jeopardize any contractual relationship between a vendor and the retailer, if the vendor were to find out.
If the allowance is part of a spiff from a specific vendor, the manager will be responsible for ensuring the vendor has the required paperwork submitted and credit is actually obtained. Having manager authorization also helps to make sure that an employee does not try to steal additional merchandise under the guise of a clothing allowance. The employee would not be able to leave and convince an unsuspecting employee that it was ok for them to leave with the product.
With operational controls in place as a form of clothing security, employees who need store clothing as part of their work attire are less likely to be able to cheat the system. Any employee attempting to circumvent the processes should stick out like a sore thumb alerting management to potential theft issues.
Visit the Loss Prevention Store to purchase Checkpoint Tags, a Clothing Alarm, Clothing Security or Clothing Security Tags to put Security Tags on Clothes and an Electronic Article Surveillance or EAS system.
For more information on Checkpoint tags, clothing security, clothing alarm, or clothing security tags how they can work with your Electronic Article Surveillance or EAS system contact us at security tags on clothes or call 1.770.426.0547