door counting sensor

Retail Theft Prevention – Lessons For Those Considering A Career In Loss Prevention Part 3


Sensormatic  security Systems -3                                                                                                      WC Blog 712
Retail Theft Prevention -4

Retail Theft Prevention – Lessons For Those Considering A Career In Loss Prevention Part 3

     How to detect shoplifters, pan-tilt-zoom cameras, closed circuit television and VCR’s (yeah, we didn’t have DVR’s then) and Sensormatic security systems were all the tools I learned to use as a Loss Prevention Associate. After four and a half years I moved into a position as a Loss Prevention Manager for a new store and found out how much I DIDN’T know about retail theft prevention. I also found I had to change my mindset about what Loss Prevention is really all about. Now, 28 years later I have my own advice to give that could make a leap into retail theft prevention a successful jump.

     Security Officer, Police Officer or Something Else?
Let’s set the record straight right from the start. Do not go into Loss Prevention thinking you are a police officer. You may stop shoplifters and you might even put them in jail via a warrant or a police officer issued citation. You are not the police officer. You will have to learn to be diplomatic and you will have to sensitive. You may have to keep children from crying while doing paperwork on the apprehension of their mother. You have to be fair in how you handle every incident. You will have to keep calm while someone curses you out. Mess up and your actions can cost your store a lot of money. You should know that you are working to make the store and company more profitable. Go in with the mindset that you are there to reduce risk and optimize sales and profit. It changes how you will view your work.

     Human Resources
Go into a Loss Prevention Manager position and be prepared to interview and hire people. As I mentioned in Part 2 surround yourself with people who can do what you can’t. If you don’t know how Sensormatic security systems work, hire someone who has experience with one. If you aren’t good at report writing find someone who has a background in clerical work or a degree in communications. This is not an easy step since it means you have to be honest with yourself about your own short comings. You may be called upon to help in new hire orientations. Be ready to brush up on public speaking skills. You will want to be the person that knows company policies and procedures because you may be investing dishonest employee activity. You may also have to assist the store in investigating worker’s comp. claims, and accident investigations. Knowledge of company policies can help your store minimize the risk of costly lawsuits.

     Operations Expert
As a Loss Prevention professional, you need to know what affects the profitability of the store. It may be retail theft prevention, vendor shortages, operational errors on the front lanes or how empty shelves are influencing sales. YOU must know what stock shortage is and how it happens. Empty shelves mean lost money for the store. You should be the first person to notice and identify problems. Is there theft? Is there a breakdown in the stocking process? Are vendors causing issues? Learn about how a Sensormatic security systems can include a door counting sensor. Customer traffic counting data can be used to determine the time of day customers are shopping. Payroll can be more effectively managed to optimize customer service and sales (you could be a hero to a store manager).  Loss Prevention Systems, Inc. can provide more details on how a door counting sensor can help a store if your manager is curious. You won’t know everything about shortage immediately but knowing that it involves more than just shoplifters and dishonest employees will prepare you in advance so you can start to learn it.

     Counselor
     I know this may sound odd to you but trust me you will have many co-workers and managers coming to you with gripes, complaints, concerns and gossip. These people trust you because they believe you will maintain confidentiality. You must be able to listen and give advice. You may get tips that will be useful in retail theft prevention but through casual conversation. You have to listen closely. Know when to stop a conversation and how to tell someone you have no choice but to refer something to another department (such as a report of assault or sexual misconduct).

     I hope all of these tips will help you understand that the role of a Loss Prevention professional is more than just stopping shoplifters. You will be a jack-of- all- trades and if you do the job properly, you will learn more than you ever dreamed you would about running a retail store. Now go forth and make a store profitable!

Need information on Sensormatic Systems? Give us a call at 1.866.914.2567 today

How to detect shoplifters, pan-tilt-zoom cameras, closed circuit television and VCR’s (yeah, we didn’t have DVR’s then) and Sensormatic security systems were all the tools I learned to use as a Loss Prevention Associate. After four and a half years I moved into a position as a Loss Prevention Manager for a new store and found out how much I DIDN’T know about retail theft prevention. I also found I had to change my mindset about what Loss Prevention is really all about. Now, 28 years later I have my own advice to give that could make a leap into retail theft prevention a successful jump.
     

Security Officer, Police Officer or Something Else?

Let’s set the record straight right from the start. Do not go into Loss Prevention thinking you are a police officer. You may stop shoplifters and you might even put them in jail via a warrant or a police officer issued citation. You are not the police officer. You will have to learn to be diplomatic and you will have to sensitive. You may have to keep children from crying while doing paperwork on the apprehension of their mother. You have to be fair in how you handle every incident. You will have to keep calm while someone curses you out. Mess up and your actions can cost your store a lot of money. You should know that you are working to make the store and company more profitable. Go in with the mindset that you are there to reduce risk and optimize sales and profit. It changes how you will view your work.
     

Human Resources

Go into a Loss Prevention Manager position and be prepared to interview and hire people. As I mentioned in Part 2 surround yourself with people who can do what you can’t. If you don’t know how Sensormatic security systems work, hire someone who has experience with one. If you aren’t good at report writing find someone who has a background in clerical work or a degree in communications. This is not an easy step since it means you have to be honest with yourself about your own short comings. You may be called upon to help in new hire orientations. Be ready to brush up on public speaking skills. You will want to be the person that knows company policies and procedures because you may be investigating dishonest employee activity. You may also have to assist the store in investigating worker’s comp. claims, and accident investigations. Knowledge of company policies can help your store minimize the risk of costly lawsuits.
     

Operations Expert

As a Loss Prevention professional, you need to know what affects the profitability of the store. It may be retail theft prevention, vendor shortages, operational errors on the front lanes or how empty shelves are influencing sales. YOU must know what stock shortage is and how it happens. Empty shelves mean lost money for the store. You should be the first person to notice and identify problems. Is there theft? Is there a breakdown in the stocking process? Are vendors causing issues? Learn about how a Sensormatic security systems can include a door counting sensor. Customer traffic counting data can be used to determine the time of day customers are shopping. Payroll can be more effectively managed to optimize customer service and sales (you could be a hero to a store manager).  Loss Prevention Systems, Inc. can provide more details on how a door counting sensor can help a store if your manager is curious. You won’t know everything about shortage immediately but knowing that it involves more than just shoplifters and dishonest employees will prepare you in advance so you can start to learn it.
     

Counselor     

I know this may sound odd to you but trust me you will have many co-workers and managers coming to you with gripes, complaints, concerns and gossip. These people trust you because they believe you will maintain confidentiality. You must be able to listen and give advice. You may get tips that will be useful in retail theft prevention but through casual conversation. You have to listen closely. Know when to stop a conversation and how to tell someone you have no choice but to refer something to another department (such as a report of assault or sexual misconduct).
     

I hope all of these tips will help you understand that the role of a Loss Prevention professional is more than just stopping shoplifters. You will be a jack-of- all- trades and if you do the job properly, you will learn more than you ever dreamed you would about running a retail store. Now go forth and make a store profitable!

 

Need information on Sensormatic Systems? Give us a call at 1.866.914.2567 today

 

Combining Retail Traffic Counting Devices With Other Technologies

People Counting Systems – 4                                                                                                        WC Blog 733
Retail Traffic Counting – 3


Combining Retail Traffic Counting Devices With Other Technologies

     I was looking at technology on the Sensormatic.com website for information on people counting systems because I like to see what is new as well as how different technology can be tied together. It is my opinion that frequently retailers do not use the systems they install to the fullest potential. For example, I understand the advantages a door counting sensor can provide to help boost sales. Sometimes this is called measuring the conversion rate for the retailer. This measurement is useful to know how many people have walked through the doors and how many transactions were completed. A big difference in those numbers indicate something in the store is not right, whether it is poor customer service or a lack of products that shoppers came in to purchase. In this sense I see how retail traffic counting can be related to Loss Prevention. I have been in retail a LONG time so I recognize that shoplifting does impact merchandise in-stocks and product availability. What I am looking for when I am researching information on different websites is how various technologies complement each other so store owners and managers can leverage more out of their Loss Prevention systems.

      It was during the course of my searching that I found something that could be quite useful from Sensormatic if paired together. This company offers a Sensormatic Synergy Camera that I believe could be coupled with their people counting device to make a giant leap for retailers, especially small and medium sized stores. The company information on this camera is that it “provides clear, high-definition video recordings or snapshots of loss events at the storefront”. The camera is mounted to a Sensormatic electronic article surveillance pedestal and captures video when alarms are detected which includes systems that can detect booster foil-lined bags. It will also capture video when a Sensormatic tag or label sets off the alarm. Now, I want you to picture this in conjunction with the pedestals that are fitted with people counting systems. You track how many customers are entering your store AND you are capturing video when alarm activations take place. You can get high-definition video and pictures of potential shoplifters who are visiting your business. If you have high foot traffic counts compared to sales as I mentioned earlier and you start to view images from your camera when alarms are set off you can begin to identify who the regular shoplifters are visiting your store. Along with the losses they are causing you through their theft activity they may be the ones causing empty spaces on your shelves. This could be why sales are low compared to your retail traffic counting numbers.

     Another advantage for store management if they combine the people counting systems with the Synergy Camera is that they can view how their teams are responding to electronic article surveillance alarms. It is one thing to know how many alarms are sounding and who the people are who are causing activations but the response to those alarms is just as important if not more so. If alarms are activated and employees are simply waving people out the door without conducting proper package and receipt checks thieves are going to take advantage of this and steal even more. From my personal experiences as a Loss Prevention Manager I have seen employees who do not address alarms properly. Some of those are theft related and those people return to your store over and over until something is done to address how responses are handled. Again, I believe combining the videos with numbers from your retail traffic counting data can aid in improving sales by identifying issues taking place in the store.

     Like so many other processes in a retail environment, one process has a direct impact on other areas of the business. If data itself is gathered and you are only counting patrons with people counting systems and you are not tying that information into other areas it becomes useless. Tie it into a Sensormatic Synergy Camera and you can begin to improve shortage numbers through suspect identification AND alarm response training. Do that and you begin to improve on hand quantities and improve sales and that should be your ultimate goal.
Retail Traffic Counting is important and we can help you with it. Call 1.866.914.2567 and let’s talk.

I was looking at technology on the Sensormatic.com website for information on people counting systems because I like to see what is new as well as how different technology can be tied together. It is my opinion that frequently retailers do not use the systems they install to the fullest potential. For example, I understand the advantages a door counting sensor can provide to help boost sales. Sometimes this is called measuring the conversion rate for the retailer. This measurement is useful to know how many people have walked through the doors and how many transactions were completed. A big difference in those numbers indicate something in the store is not right, whether it is poor customer service or a lack of products that shoppers came in to purchase. In this sense I see how retail traffic counting can be related to Loss Prevention. I have been in retail a LONG time so I recognize that shoplifting does impact merchandise in-stocks and product availability. What I am looking for when I am researching information on different websites is how various technologies complement each other so store owners and managers can leverage more out of their Loss Prevention systems.
     

It was during the course of my searching that I found something that could be quite useful from Sensormatic if paired together. This company offers a Sensormatic Synergy Camera that I believe could be coupled with their people counting device to make a giant leap for retailers, especially small and medium sized stores. The company information on this camera is that it “provides clear, high-definition video recordings or snapshots of loss events at the storefront”. The camera is mounted to a Sensormatic electronic article surveillance pedestal and captures video when alarms are detected which includes systems that can detect booster foil-lined bags. It will also capture video when a Sensormatic tag or label sets off the alarm. Now, I want you to picture this in conjunction with the pedestals that are fitted with people counting systems. You track how many customers are entering your store AND you are capturing video when alarm activations take place. You can get high-definition video and pictures of potential shoplifters who are visiting your business. If you have high foot traffic counts compared to sales as I mentioned earlier and you start to view images from your camera when alarms are set off you can begin to identify who the regular shoplifters are visiting your store. Along with the losses they are causing you through their theft activity they may be the ones causing empty spaces on your shelves. This could be why sales are low compared to your retail traffic counting numbers.
     

Another advantage for store management if they combine the people counting systems with the Synergy Camera is that they can view how their teams are responding to electronic article surveillance alarms. It is one thing to know how many alarms are sounding and who the people are who are causing activations but the response to those alarms is just as important if not more so. If alarms are activated and employees are simply waving people out the door without conducting proper package and receipt checks thieves are going to take advantage of this and steal even more. From my personal experiences as a Loss Prevention Manager I have seen employees who do not address alarms properly. Some of those are theft related and those people return to your store over and over until something is done to address how responses are handled. Again, I believe combining the videos with numbers from your retail traffic counting data can aid in improving sales by identifying issues taking place in the store.
     

Like so many other processes in a retail environment, one process has a direct impact on other areas of the business. If data itself is gathered and you are only counting patrons with people counting systems and you are not tying that information into other areas it becomes useless. Tie it into a Sensormatic Synergy Camera and you can begin to improve shortage numbers through suspect identification AND alarm response training. Do that and you begin to improve on hand quantities and improve sales and that should be your ultimate goal.

 

Retail Traffic Counting is important and we can help you with it. Call 1.866.914.2567 and let’s talk.

 

Score Big When You Use A Customer Counting Device – Part 2

Retail traffic counting – 3                                                                                                              WC Blog 719
Door Counting Sensor -4

Score Big When You Use A Customer Counting Device – Part 2


     Since you are here I am hopeful that you are interested in more information on how retail traffic counting can help build your sales as we started to explore in Part 1 of this series. For those who have missed Part 1, please continue reading because you can benefit too (and you can go back later and read part 1). In Part 1 we talked about how Bill Bregar the founder of Loss Prevention Systems, Inc. sees a missed opportunity for sales when store owners and managers focus attention on transaction totals. There are customers who are invisible to them, the people who walked in but never bought anything so they don’t show up on the receipt tapes. Invisible customers equate to lost sales but Bill found the solution to the problem. Install a Sensormatic door counting sensor. Stores already equipped with a Sensormatic electronic article surveillance system may be able to have an existing system fitted with a sensor. When managers start to see that there are people in the store not making purchases they can begin to look for methods to capture those missed opportunities.

     Before we turn to methods for capturing missed sales and using the data retrieved from a retail traffic counting system I want to talk about why the electronic article surveillance piece of this equation is so important. You do have people entering the store not being accounted for on a point of sale receipt tape but they are also not leaving empty-handed. These are shoplifters and employees who are stealing merchandise and causing you shortage. In fact if left unchecked they could be costing you 2% or even more in lost merchandise. An electronic article surveillance system can cut that shrinkage by half and can produce results almost immediately once installed. Purchase an electronic article surveillance system with a door counting sensor installed in it and you can kill two birds with one stone. Loss Prevention Systems, Inc. can help you with a Sensormatic system and if cost is a concern they can help with financing. You can also try their Free ROI Calculator to see how fast a system can pay for itself over time. I mention this because I don’t want people to focus on a system purchase and overlook all of the advantages a system can provide your business because of a misconception they cannot afford a Sensormatic system.

      As mentioned the missed opportunities for sales can be corrected with the installation of a door counting sensor let’s examine how that can be accomplished.
A sensor can provide data that includes the time of the day when shoppers are entering a store. Managers can begin to see trends based on the day of the week and the hours customers are coming in. Scheduling of employees can be focused on those particular hours to put more workers on the sales floor. More employees focused on helping customers translate to more sales.
Just as you can focus scheduling based on foot traffic to add sales floor coverage, the same information can help to improve cashier scheduling as well. It is not uncommon for shoppers to leave without making a purchase if they perceive a wait time in line will be too long (I’ve done it myself).  Having enough cashiers to improve checkout wait times will increase your overall sales. 
Effective ad campaigns are those that draw in more customers. How do you know if you are spending money on the right advertising platforms? I would argue that knowing how many people are already visiting your establishment and then monitoring the numbers after the initiation of the campaign would be the best way to do so. Rather than basing your determination on point of sale information which can fluctuate traffic counters give hard numbers. If you find you are not seeing increases in customer traffic after a reasonable time you can change your strategy and spend your money on another format.
Finally, though it may not seem like it is related to increasing sales it does help in the long term. Adding a retail traffic counting sensor and staffing the salesfloor as I mentioned will deter shoplifting. The improved customer service (along with the Sensormatic towers and tags) will prevent theft which improves your merchandise in-stocks. In turn merchandise is now available to the paying customers.
  Missed sales opportunities are often unseen. Install a door counting sensor and you can begin to see a whole group of customers you did not know existed. Meet THEIR needs and watch your sales truly take off.
Retail traffic counting is important and we can help you with it. Call 1.866.914.2567 and let’s talk.

Since you are here I am hopeful that you are interested in more information on how retail traffic counting can help build your sales as we started to explore in Part 1 of this series. For those who have missed Part 1, please continue reading because you can benefit too (and you can go back later and read part 1). In Part 1 we talked about how Bill Bregar the founder of Loss Prevention Systems, Inc. sees a missed opportunity for sales when store owners and managers focus attention on transaction totals. There are customers who are invisible to them, the people who walked in but never bought anything so they don’t show up on the receipt tapes. Invisible customers equate to lost sales but Bill found the solution to the problem. Install a Sensormatic door counting sensor. Stores already equipped with a Sensormatic electronic article surveillance system may be able to have an existing system fitted with a sensor. When managers start to see that there are people in the store not making purchases they can begin to look for methods to capture those missed opportunities.
     

 Before we turn to methods for capturing missed sales and using the data retrieved from a retail traffic counting system I want to talk about why the electronic article surveillance piece of this equation is so important. You do have people entering the store not being accounted for on a point of sale receipt tape but they are also not leaving empty-handed. These are shoplifters and employees who are stealing merchandise and causing you shortage. In fact if left unchecked they could be costing you 2% or even more in lost merchandise. An electronic article surveillance system can cut that shrinkage by half and can produce results almost immediately once installed. Purchase an electronic article surveillance system with a door counting sensor installed in it and you can kill two birds with one stone. Loss Prevention Systems, Inc. can help you with a Sensormatic system and if cost is a concern they can help with financing. You can also try their Free ROI Calculator to see how fast a system can pay for itself over time. I mention this because I don’t want people to focus on a system purchase and overlook all of the advantages a system can provide your business because of a misconception they cannot afford a Sensormatic system.

     

As mentioned the missed opportunities for sales can be corrected with the installation of a door counting sensor let’s examine how that can be accomplished.

A sensor can provide data that includes the time of the day when shoppers are entering a store. Managers can begin to see trends based on the day of the week and the hours customers are coming in. Scheduling of employees can be focused on those particular hours to put more workers on the sales floor. More employees focused on helping customers translate to more sales.

Just as you can focus scheduling based on foot traffic to add sales floor coverage, the same information can help to improve cashier scheduling as well. It is not uncommon for shoppers to leave without making a purchase if they perceive a wait time in line will be too long (I’ve done it myself).  Having enough cashiers to improve checkout wait times will increase your overall sales. 

Effective ad campaigns are those that draw in more customers. How do you know if you are spending money on the right advertising platforms? I would argue that knowing how many people are already visiting your establishment and then monitoring the numbers after the initiation of the campaign would be the best way to do so. Rather than basing your determination on point of sale information which can fluctuate traffic counters give hard numbers. If you find you are not seeing increases in customer traffic after a reasonable time you can change your strategy and spend your money on another format.

Finally, though it may not seem like it is related to increasing sales it does help in the long term. Adding a retail traffic counting sensor and staffing the salesfloor as I mentioned will deter shoplifting. The improved customer service (along with the Sensormatic towers and tags) will prevent theft which improves your merchandise in-stocks. In turn merchandise is now available to the paying customers. 

 

Missed sales opportunities are often unseen. Install a door counting sensor and you can begin to see a whole group of customers you did not know existed. Meet THEIR needs and watch your sales truly take off.

 

Retail traffic counting is important and we can help you with it. Call 1.866.914.2567 and let’s talk.