Gen 3 Checkpoint Hard Tags Can Keep You From Feeling Blue From Jean Theft
Ask anyone who has been in Loss Prevention and they can probably tell you about a shoplifter or a group of shoplifters who they will always remember. It may because of what they were stealing or the manner of theft. It may even be how they acted once they were stopped. I have a number of these stories from my many years as a Loss Prevention Associate and a Loss Prevention Manager. While I enjoy being able to share these experiences, I also like to be able to share what may have prevented the situation and the lessons learned so that retail owners and managers may be able to prevent shoplifting incidents in their stores. Many of the lessons learned involve merchandise protection strategies that would have been useful to stop shoplifting before it got out of hand. One of the Checkpoint hard tags I wish I had access to was the Checkpoint Gen 3 Checkpoint tag.
Before I go on with my story, let me share a bit of information on what the Gen 3 Checkpoint hard tags are so that it makes sense how it would have made a difference for our store. The Gen 3 tag is a two-piece hard tag that is pinned together through a piece of clothing. It has an aesthetically appealing disc shaped design that does not take away from the appearance of a garment. Yet, while it has a pleasing look it is durable, tamper resistant and difficult to take off without the proper removal device. It is built to activate electronic article surveillance antennas in the event of an attempt to shoplift the merchandise it is attached to. The alarm activation elicits response from store personnel so they can recover the merchandise before it is removed from the store.
In the case I referenced earlier, I was the Loss Prevention Manager for a big box retailer. We had been experiencing a sharp increase in the loss of denim jeans from our store and I had to try to put a stop to it. We had two issues that we were contending with, one being that we are in a tourist area and we had a lot of people wearing backpacks to the store and we did not check them when they walked in or hold them at our return desk due to liability concerns. Second, we did not have enough security staff to be in the store during all hours of operation so it was apparent when we did not have a uniformed security officer at our front doors. I had our team begin doing live surveillances on the jean wall and leaving a camera on them when we were not there, reviewing that video when we were back at work. The only protections to stop shoplifting of the merchandise at the time were soft Checkpoint tags applied to the manufacturer hang tag. Unfortunately, we were finding the manufacturer tags and the electronic article surveillance tags lying around the store and in the fitting rooms. Eventually our efforts with surveillance paid off and we got a suspect on camera.
We had some foreign student workers who were brought in to work for tourist oriented businesses in our area during the summer. Some of these student workers were known to be stealing in a number of stores but it was not always easy to catch them since they tended to work in groups. Through live video surveillance we did see a couple of young ladies filling their purses with several pair of jeans after removing tags and we apprehended them.This did not completely stop shoplifting of denims, but it did seem to slow down significantly after this arrest. The shoplifters had their work visas revoked and they received fines for the theft.
The lesson I hope those reading this article will take away is that had the Gen 3 Checkpoint hard tags been available to us, we could have taken better steps to protect the merchandise and not suffered the losses we did before catching our thieves. If you have hard to tag merchandise, look at the electronic article surveillance options available to stop shoplifting offered by Checkpoint.
For more information on Checkpoint hard tags, contact us or call 1.770.426.0547