The changing, or fitting rooms are the hub of most theft activity that occurs in clothing departments, or clothing stores in general. Shoplifters will use many different methods to try and pull a fast one on your employees. Not having some form of clothing security tags on your merchandise could cost you a great deal of money, but having an unstaffed fitting room can cost you far more in the end. Clothing security doesn’t stop at tags on the clothing, but also includes all of your employees.
Shoplifters feel comfortable stealing in areas where their actions cannot be observed by other people, so what better place for them to commit their theft than in your fitting rooms. Once in the room, they know that no one is observing their actions, so they are free to do whatever they want to do without fear of being seen. After all, they want to attract as little attention as possible while they are in the store.
A fitting room attendant is on the front line in clothing security, and they can ensure that customers are exiting the rooms with the same amount of clothing they are bringing into the room. Some thieves will actually double hang merchandise, which is when they take one piece of clothing, and place an identical piece of clothing on top of it on the hanger. This way, when they are bringing the items into the fitting room, it looks like there is only one piece of clothing on the hanger. If you have a properly trained fitting room attendant, they will be able to spot these types of things and stop this from happening.
The employee stationed at the fitting room should also check the rooms on a regular basis, or before and after customers are in the rooms. The reason for this is so they can check for empty hangers, price tags, and clothing security tags. You can be sure that tags will be hidden anywhere a price tag could possibly fit. I have found them stuck under benches with gum, behind mirrors and even in the cracks of the walls. The fitting room attendant should physically handle all merchandise brought in and out of the room, because they will be able to feel if anything is inside the clothing or if it is double hung. Nothing makes shoplifters madder than spending time trying to sneak something into the fitting rooms, only to have someone find the merchandise. I have seen people try to hide hundreds of dollars of cosmetic items into a stack of folded pants. When they spend the time doing this, the looks on their faces are priceless when they are caught. They thought they were smarter than the average person.
Placing clothing security tags on clothing may deter some shoplifters from trying to steal your clothes, but it doesn’t always deter all of them. In my experience, the best way to reduce theft in the fitting room is to have an employee present at all times. The question isn’t whether or not you can afford to have staff always at the fitting rooms, but if you can afford not to have someone there at all times. The cost of keeping someone there is much lower than what you will lose if you don’t have an employee present.
For more information contact us: Clothing Security or call 1.770.426.0547