Working in Loss Prevention shows you all aspects of shoplifting. Each day as you are watching for thieves, you never know what will happen or what technique you will observe. One day you are catching a thoroughly experienced thief who steals for a living. The next day you are catching a mom pushing a stroller with kids. Other times you may catch a group of 5 kids, not thinking about the seriousness of what they are doing. Some days you run into extremely strange situations that make you wonder what the person was thinking! You just never know. Just last month, I had a strange incident with EAS Labels! My store now uses them every day to stop shoplifting!
One morning I was on CCTV, scanning CCTV on a very slow morning. Slow, I thought! I had a subject enter the store acting very suspiciously. She paced the sales floor for close to 20 minutes, looking for associates and acting extremely nervous. This is a behavior I know too well from shoplifters, so I had to be patient and continue to observe. I kept CCTV on her due to these behaviors. After she finally felt “safe” to steal, she started rapidly selecting our highest dollar product out of the home décor department. I noticed all of the product was small, and would be easily concealable in a large purse she was carrying. After selecting 8 items priced between $39.99 and $79.00, she AGAIN paced the sales floor appearing very paranoid for another 20 minutes. I knew at this point, this was going to be a long, drawn out shoplifting incident. I continued to watch, and finally the subject started pulling each price tag off each item. After pulling the tags, she walked the floor looking for a trash can to conceal the ripped tags in. The subject finally concealed each item slowly into her purse. However, one thing struck me as extremely odd. Why go through all this trouble scoping out the sales floor & pulling tags but not removing the EAS Labels!!? It didn’t make any sense. That should be the first thing you want off, especially with how they alarm at the door! The subject ended up walking the floor for another 45 minutes before finally exiting the building! Finally, she looks like she is making her way for an exit. While exiting, the alarm went ballistic! She panicked, quickly dumping all product on ground, just as I thought would happen. She ran to her vehicle, and took off as fast as she could. The store associates and I ran outside to where she dumped. I was able to recover all product from outside the store! EAS Labels saved us from taking a loss on this product! After this incident, I had several other occurrences where the labels worked to stop shoplifting. Less worry, more product on the shelf. Another positive element is how extremely easy they are to apply, and an inexpensive fix.
I invested a lot of time into this case. But the payoff was massive! Especially showing my store team that the labels we have in place works to stop shoplifting. This was a strange shoplifter case, but it helped illustrate for store management why we utilize EAS labels anytime we receive high dollar product to place on the shelves! You will see a decrease in theft trends once you utilize the same program as me.
Need information on EAS Labels? Give us a call at 1.866.914.2567 now.