prevent shoplifting

Clothing Security Can Be A Problem In The New ERA Of Online Ordering And Parking Lot Pick-Ups Part 1

 

Sensormatic hard tag: need 2
people counting
clothing security: need 2
safer

clothing Security-4                                                                                                       WC Blog 692
Sensormatic tags-3

Clothing Security Can Be A Problem In The New ERA Of Online Ordering And Parking Lot Pick-Ups Part 1

     Recently I am seeing more drive and pick-up parking spaces and I got to thinking about how it relates to clothing security and other theft protection efforts. It only seems to be recently that I saw the delivery parking places pop up in locations like WalMart, Target, and even a grocery store chain near where I live. In the store I work for we have been doing what are called Omni orders over the past year or so. All of these are designed to make a faster shopping experience for customers so they can make purchases online and pick them up without having to go into a store. Personally I see good and bad aspects to this strategy. One of my concerns involves the handling of Sensormatic tags and labels used to prevent shoplifting. 

     As I consider the process of Omni orders in our store I can see where there may be problems for other retailers. Our store does not sell any clothing we aren’t that type of retailer but having filled orders I am in a position to see the potential pitfalls for those stores that do sell clothing. When stores like the one I work at are using Sensormatic tags and labels on merchandise we are trying to prevent theft. We are deterring shoplifters and even employees who would try to steal when we put retail anti-theft devices on products. Crooks are well aware that tagged goods are going to set off those electronic article surveillance (EAS) towers we have at the front doors. Before we finish a transaction we have to use deactivation pads to detune EAS labels or we have to use a detachment tool to remove a hard tag or wrap. In those stores where I worked as a Loss Prevention Manager or Associate and softlines products were sold we had to remove the clothing security tags at the points of sale. If labels are not detuned it is a nuisance to customers as they walk out of a store. If a hard tag isn’t removed a whole new problem is created for the patron. Aside from the alarm it causes if no one responds the patron may simply leave. If the patron gets home and a tag is still on the merchandise the product can’t be worn and then you have to deal with a very angry customer when they come back. As a Loss Prevention Associate for a department store I would see this problem as shoppers would walk into our store from the mall. I remember being involved with a number of situations when a customer had a proper receipt from another store but that location failed to remove  clothing security tags. The shopper was embarrassed and after verifying the receipt and product matched I would escort the customer back to that store and seek assistance in having a tag removed.

      That brings me back to my concern with these new online orders being shipped from stores. The process for our company goes something like this. An alert pops on our mobile device. We are prompted on the items to pull and we go through the list picking the pieces. We then box the goods up for shipment and print the packing list and shipping label and ready it for delivery pick-up. We also have in-store pick-ups for online orders that are processed in a similar manner. When these orders involve hard tagged merchandise we have to ensure the tags are removed before they are shipped off or turned over to the customer. Now what happens when the store is one that sells shoes, shirts, jeans, dresses, etc. and protects items with clothing security tags? Having been involved in the shipping process I can see where it would be easy to overlook the critical step of removing anti-theft devices. Ship off an article of clothing with the security tag still attached and you are going to have one extremely agitated customer who can’t wear the product. This can create a horrible customer service fiasco.

     In Part 2 I want to talk a bit more about the advantages and disadvantages of the online shopping experience. I want to be clear that I am in total favor of the use of Sensormatic tags and efforts to stop theft. I am also in favor of owners finding new ways to increase sales and being open to finding new ways to reach additional customers. I only want retailers to be careful in their strategies and not follow a trend for the sake of a trend but to look for the potential pitfalls a strategy may carry.

Need information on clothing security? Give us a call at 1.866.914.2567 now. 

Recently I am seeing more drive and pick-up parking spaces and I got to thinking about how it relates to clothing security and other theft protection efforts. It only seems to be recently that I saw the delivery parking places pop up in locations like WalMart, Target, and even a grocery store chain near where I live. In the store I work for we have been doing what are called Omni orders over the past year or so. All of these are designed to make a faster shopping experience for customers so they can make purchases online and pick them up without having to go into a store. Personally I see good and bad aspects to this strategy. One of my concerns involves the handling of Sensormatic tags and labels used to prevent shoplifting. 
     

As I consider the process of Omni orders in our store I can see where there may be problems for other retailers. Our store does not sell any clothing we aren’t that type of retailer but having filled orders I am in a position to see the potential pitfalls for those stores that do sell clothing. When stores like the one I work at are using Sensormatic tags and labels on merchandise we are trying to prevent theft. We are deterring shoplifters and even employees who would try to steal when we put retail anti-theft devices on products. Crooks are well aware that tagged goods are going to set off those electronic article surveillance (EAS) towers we have at the front doors. Before we finish a transaction we have to use deactivation pads to detune EAS labels or we have to use a detachment tool to remove a hard tag or wrap. In those stores where I worked as a Loss Prevention Manager or Associate and softlines products were sold we had to remove the clothing security tags at the points of sale. If labels are not detuned it is a nuisance to customers as they walk out of a store. If a hard tag isn’t removed a whole new problem is created for the patron. Aside from the alarm it causes if no one responds the patron may simply leave. If the patron gets home and a tag is still on the merchandise the product can’t be worn and then you have to deal with a very angry customer when they come back. As a Loss Prevention Associate for a department store I would see this problem as shoppers would walk into our store from the mall. I remember being involved with a number of situations when a customer had a proper receipt from another store but that location failed to remove  clothing security tags. The shopper was embarrassed and after verifying the receipt and product matched I would escort the customer back to that store and seek assistance in having a tag removed.
     

That brings me back to my concern with these new online orders being shipped from stores. The process for our company goes something like this. An alert pops on our mobile device. We are prompted on the items to pull and we go through the list picking the pieces. We then box the goods up for shipment and print the packing list and shipping label and ready it for delivery pick-up. We also have in-store pick-ups for online orders that are processed in a similar manner. When these orders involve hard tagged merchandise we have to ensure the tags are removed before they are shipped off or turned over to the customer. Now what happens when the store is one that sells shoes, shirts, jeans, dresses, etc. and protects items with clothing security tags? Having been involved in the shipping process I can see where it would be easy to overlook the critical step of removing anti-theft devices. Ship off an article of clothing with the security tag still attached and you are going to have one extremely agitated customer who can’t wear the product. This can create a horrible customer service fiasco.
     

In Part 2 I want to talk a bit more about the advantages and disadvantages of the online shopping experience. I want to be clear that I am in total favor of the use of Sensormatic tags and efforts to stop theft. I am also in favor of owners finding new ways to increase sales and being open to finding new ways to reach additional customers. I only want retailers to be careful in their strategies and not follow a trend for the sake of a trend but to look for the potential pitfalls a strategy may carry.

 

Need information on clothing security? Give us a call at 1.866.914.2567 now. 

 

 

Break Out Of The Showcase Mindset With EAS Products

 

Prevent Shoplifting -3                                                                                                                  WC Blog 567
Alpha Security – 5
Break Out Of The Showcase Mindset With Alpha Security Products
     SO, you want to prevent shoplifting in your store and you are determined that a display case is the best solution to your problem. I would like to make a case that there is a better solution than locking up merchandise in a showcase. To demonstrate that showcases are not the fool-proof solutions you may think they are. Take a minute to review the following cases (no pun intended, although it is funny now that I think about it):
From wbtw.com by Kendall McGee, Feb 19,2018 – “The police report says the suspects…used a pry bar from the hardware section of the store to open a display case containing Apple iPhones”. Estimated value of the phones, $3,776.
From delawareonline.com, by Alonzo Small, March 31, 2017 – “…police are seeking the public’s help in identifying a shoplifter who stole more than $2,000 worth of cologne…(the thief) proceeded to remove assorted  cologne after opening the display cases with an unknown type of tool.”
Patch.com, by Lorraine Swanson, Aug 6, 2017 – In an article, “Shoplifter Swipes Over $43,000 Worth Of Gold Earrings From Sears: Prosecutor” the story reports, “…is accused of cutting a security alarm on a display case and walking out of the shopping mall with $43,708 worth of assorted gold earrings.”
Showcases are a poor remedy to a bigger problem. That problem is how to prevent shoplifting with leaner payroll budgets as traditional stores struggle to stay competitive with their traditional competitors and now online rivals. The better way to stop thieves is to use Alpha Security retail anti-theft devices on your merchandise.
     Bill Bregar, CEO of Loss Prevention Systems Inc. (LPSI) has made it the objective of his company to help retailers battle criminal shoplifters. With years of Retail Loss Prevention experience up to and including the Director level for National retail chain stores, Bill knows the constraints placed on small business owners. Alpha Security products are recommended by LPSI because they are nearly impossible for shoplifters to defeat and work hand-in-hand with Checkpoint electronic article surveillance towers. Trying to carry Alpha Security tagged items past a Checkpoint tower activates an alarm that gets a response from trained store personnel. Unlike items in a showcase that gets broken into and a bag is stuffed full and carried out a door, a tagged item is not going to be tampered with and is going to set off that tower. A video of someone who broke into a showcase probably won’t get your merchandise back for your store there is usually too much time that has gone past. An electronic article surveillance system gives live results. Staff members respond as soon as that alarm sounds. Real time alarms result in real time recoveries.
     There is another downside to store showcases. They prevent honest shoppers from being able to look at the products inside of them. If they do see something they are attracted to they can’t handle it and read information on the packaging say for example the iPhones. Your customer wants to look at something? They can wait until you get someone over to open the case and show it to them. Wait! That’s right, you put the display cases in to save payroll because you can’t afford to have someone nearby the area to show merchandise to people who may not want to buy your goods. Now you have to have a call button so the employees you do have in the store can try to get to the showcase before the customer leaves. By using Alpha Security anti-theft devices on merchandise you have the protection you are wanting from a showcase without the interruption to customer service. The more accessible merchandise is to the customer the more sales a store will have. Increased sales means increased payroll so you can better serve your customers.
    When stores are stretched so thin on payroll that shoplifters have time to break into showcases to steal then showcases are no longer the answer to prevent shoplifting. Let LPSI help you reduce stock shortage and improve sales with Alpha Security products. You won’t be disappointed and neither will your customers.
For more information about Alpha Security contact us or call 1.866.914.2567.

SO, you want to prevent shoplifting in your store and you are determined that a display case is the best solution to your problem. I would like to make a case that there is a better solution than locking up merchandise in a showcase. To demonstrate that showcases are not the fool-proof solutions you may think they are. Take a minute to review the following cases (no pun intended, although it is funny now that I think about it):

From wbtw.com by Kendall McGee, Feb 19,2018 – “The police report says the suspects…used a pry bar from the hardware section of the store to open a display case containing Apple iPhones”. Estimated value of the phones, $3,776.

From delawareonline.com, by Alonzo Small, March 31, 2017 – “…police are seeking the public’s help in identifying a shoplifter who stole more than $2,000 worth of cologne…(the thief) proceeded to remove assorted  cologne after opening the display cases with an unknown type of tool.”

Patch.com, by Lorraine Swanson, Aug 6, 2017 – In an article, “Shoplifter Swipes Over $43,000 Worth Of Gold Earrings From Sears: Prosecutor” the story reports, “…is accused of cutting a security alarm on a display case and walking out of the shopping mall with $43,708 worth of assorted gold earrings.”

Showcases are a poor remedy to a bigger problem. That problem is how to prevent shoplifting with leaner payroll budgets as traditional stores struggle to stay competitive with their traditional competitors and now online rivals. The better way to stop thieves is to use EAS retail anti-theft devices on your merchandise.

 

Bill Bregar, CEO of Loss Prevention Systems Inc. (LPSI) has made it the objective of his company to help retailers battle criminal shoplifters. With years of Retail Loss Prevention experience up to and including the Director level for National retail chain stores, Bill knows the constraints placed on small business owners. EAS products are recommended by LPSI because they are nearly impossible for shoplifters to defeat and work hand-in-hand with electronic article surveillance (EAS) towers. Trying to carry EAS tagged items past a EAS tower activates an alarm that gets a response from trained store personnel. Unlike items in a showcase that gets broken into and a bag is stuffed full and carried out a door, a tagged item is not going to be tampered with and is going to set off that tower. A video of someone who broke into a showcase probably won’t get your merchandise back for your store there is usually too much time that has gone past. An electronic article surveillance system gives live results. Staff members respond as soon as that alarm sounds. Real time alarms result in real time recoveries.

 

 There is another downside to store showcases. They prevent honest shoppers from being able to look at the products inside of them. If they do see something they are attracted to they can’t handle it and read information on the packaging say for example the iPhones. Your customer wants to look at something? They can wait until you get someone over to open the case and show it to them. Wait! That’s right, you put the display cases in to save payroll because you can’t afford to have someone nearby the area to show merchandise to people who may not want to buy your goods. Now you have to have a call button so the employees you do have in the store can try to get to the showcase before the customer leaves. By using EAS anti-theft devices on merchandise you have the protection you are wanting from a showcase without the interruption to customer service. The more accessible merchandise is to the customer the more sales a store will have. Increased sales means increased payroll so you can better serve your customers.

 

When stores are stretched so thin on payroll that shoplifters have time to break into showcases to steal then showcases are no longer the answer to prevent shoplifting. Let LPSI help you reduce stock shortage and improve sales with EAS products. You won’t be disappointed and neither will your customers.

 

For more information about how to prevent shoplifting, contact us or call 1.866.914.2567.

 

Avoid Physical Altercations With Shoplifters Use Keepers To Protect Merchandise

Prevent shoplifting-3                                                                                                                    wc blog 586
Retail Anti-Theft Devices-3
Alpha Keepers-4


Avoid Physical Altercations With Shoplifters Use Alpha Keepers To Protect Merchandise

     I have been working in retail for a very long time and much of that was in Loss Prevention where I would prevent shoplifting. I recently read an article in an online magazine about the thoughts readers had on a video of a teenager and Loss Prevention Associate in a physical altercation. Many of the readers felt that the Loss Prevention Agent was at least partially to blame. Now I am going to add my two cents to this issue but I want to make something clear first. Though I have been involved in altercations in my Loss Prevention Career and in MOST of the altercations there was no use of retail anti-theft devices such as Alpha Keepers to protect the merchandise from being stolen. My career dates back to 1990 when we were not using many protective devices on merchandise though they were available in limited designs. The department store I worked for had few guidelines for L.P. Associates so I was generally free to do what was necessary to catch the bud guy (or gal). If someone chose to struggle or I felt they might flee I could grab a fistful of shirt or a belt to control the suspect. If a thief chose to fight there was no requirement for us to be punching bags or throw up our hands and say maybe I’ll get you next time. Drop the merchandise and we might let you run off. We could also be reasonably sure the police were going to be at our store within minutes of a call for assistance. Later, when I was a Loss Prevention Manager for another company we had more restrictions but we were not required to have to let someone go if they assaulted us. We had by this time begun to use more protective devices including Alpha Keepers for open display video game software.

     I know most of you are familiar with the retail anti-theft devices on the market but you may not know about Alpha Keepers. Keepers are clear, hard plastic boxes with locking lids. Inside the lid is the heart of the unit that communicates with the electronic article surveillance towers stores install at their entrances and exits. A Keeper box triggers the sensor in the surveillance towers when it is carried in the detection range of the towers. The other key component is the tamper alarm for the box if a shoplifter tried to force it open. Both alarms are loud enough to draw the attention of store workers who respond and prevent shoplifting and recover merchandise through customer service and/or receipt checks. My first experience with these devices made me a believer as I saw dramatic decreases of shortage in video games we placed on open endcap displays.

     I do have my thoughts on the question posed in the article and they are mixed. There was a time I would have absolutely had no qualms about Loss Prevention employees using force to prevent crooks from getting away. I would say I now am in favor of a measured response. To tie the hands of trained Loss Prevention Associates and have an absolute 100% hands-off policy is asking for trouble. I am convinced that once that policy is in place your efforts to prevent shoplifting will be almost useless unless you are aggressively using retail anti-theft devices. You must also ensure employees are trained on quick responses to EAS alarms and how to conduct THOROUGH receipt and bag checks.

      Alpha Keepers and other devices will deter the shoplifter who is acting on a whim. Those who are professionals or aggressive will not be deterred in your store and will ignore attempts to stop them and should an employee try to stand in front of them they will shove their way past. The word will get out about your policy and it will be taken advantage of. What will your policy be if an employee is shoved? Are you going to allow the police to be called? Some stores won’t. Are you going to file a police report for shoplifting? Many do not and even if you want to can you tell the police what was stolen? My position is that I don’t want an altercation but the current trend of throwing up hands and allowing thieves to walk all over stores is foolish. 

     
     All of the above said, a hands off policy is probably the best option for a store with no L.P. staff. Whether you allow some contact or no contact you still need to prevent theft of DVD’s, CD’s, video games and more with Alpha Keepers. Keep your merchandise safe and more importantly your staff safe and Keepers will help do both.
Get more information on Alpha Keepers, contact us or call 1.866.914.2567 today 
     

I have been working in retail for a very long time and much of that was in Loss Prevention where I would prevent shoplifting. I recently read an article in an online magazine about the thoughts readers had on a video of a teenager and Loss Prevention Associate in a physical altercation. Many of the readers felt that the Loss Prevention Agent was at least partially to blame. Now I am going to add my two cents to this issue but I want to make something clear first. Though I have been involved in altercations in my Loss Prevention Career and in MOST of the altercations there was no use of retail anti-theft devices such as  Keepers to protect the merchandise from being stolen. My career dates back to 1990 when we were not using many protective devices on merchandise though they were available in limited designs. The department store I worked for had few guidelines for L.P. Associates so I was generally free to do what was necessary to catch the bud guy (or gal). If someone chose to struggle or I felt they might flee I could grab a fistful of shirt or a belt to control the suspect. If a thief chose to fight there was no requirement for us to be punching bags or throw up our hands and say maybe I’ll get you next time. Drop the merchandise and we might let you run off. We could also be reasonably sure the police were going to be at our store within minutes of a call for assistance. Later, when I was a Loss Prevention Manager for another company we had more restrictions but we were not required to have to let someone go if they assaulted us. We had by this time begun to use more protective devices including Keepers for open display video game software.
     

I know most of you are familiar with the retail anti-theft devices on the market but you may not know about Keepers. Keepers are clear, hard plastic boxes with locking lids. Inside the lid is the heart of the unit that communicates with the electronic article surveillance towers stores install at their entrances and exits. A Keeper box triggers the sensor in the surveillance towers when it is carried in the detection range of the towers. The other key component is the tamper alarm for the box if a shoplifter tried to force it open. Both alarms are loud enough to draw the attention of store workers who respond and prevent shoplifting and recover merchandise through customer service and/or receipt checks. My first experience with these devices made me a believer as I saw dramatic decreases of shortage in video games we placed on open endcap displays.
     

I do have my thoughts on the question posed in the article and they are mixed. There was a time I would have absolutely had no qualms about Loss Prevention employees using force to prevent crooks from getting away. I would say I now am in favor of a measured response. To tie the hands of trained Loss Prevention Associates and have an absolute 100% hands-off policy is asking for trouble. I am convinced that once that policy is in place your efforts to prevent shoplifting will be almost useless unless you are aggressively using retail anti-theft devices. You must also ensure employees are trained on quick responses to EAS alarms and how to conduct THOROUGH receipt and bag checks.
     

Keepers and other devices will deter the shoplifter who is acting on a whim. Those who are professionals or aggressive will not be deterred in your store and will ignore attempts to stop them and should an employee try to stand in front of them they will shove their way past. The word will get out about your policy and it will be taken advantage of. What will your policy be if an employee is shoved? Are you going to allow the police to be called? Some stores won’t. Are you going to file a police report for shoplifting? Many do not and even if you want to can you tell the police what was stolen? My position is that I don’t want an altercation but the current trend of throwing up hands and allowing thieves to walk all over stores is foolish. 
          

All of the above said, a hands off policy is probably the best option for a store with no L.P. staff. Whether you allow some contact or no contact you still need to prevent theft of DVD’s, CD’s, video games and more with Keepers. Keep your merchandise safe and more importantly your staff safe and Keepers will help do both.

 

Get more information on Keepers, contact us or call 1.866.914.2567 today