Electronic article surveillance is an extremely popular form of retail security but if it is not implemented properly it can become problematic. I do not say this to discourage owners and managers from purchasing a Sensormatic security system or Sensormatic tags but to make sure that people understand there are responsibilities that come with owning and using a system. To steal a quote from the “Spiderman” movie, “With great power comes great responsibility”. Anti-theft systems are powerful and can stop shoplifting but they can hurt customer service too.
I have long believed that the failure to remove Sensormatic hard tags when a customer makes a purchase does cause a problem for the retailer. Shoppers get irritated and embarrassed by false alarms. The alarm itself causes a distraction to other shoppers (which is okay if the alarm is legitimate but not because of a cashier error). False alarms take up unnecessary time from the responding supervisor. To add to all of these I have noticed that some websites that claim to tell people how to remove electronic article surveillance tags (not related to Sensormatic or any anti-theft system dealer or manufacturer) allegedly do so in response to finding tags still on merchandise after a customer gets home. I do know that tags are sometimes left on merchandise and it does create a headache for the patron. It has happened to me and I have had to go back to the store and have the tag removed. Did the alarm sound when I left the store? Yes, I think so, other people were walking out and in at the same time. After waiting for someone to respond to the alarm I got irritated and left. As you would expect when I returned the alarm went off again and people looked at me and I was further annoyed. Then there is the look from the return desk employee that lets you know they don’t quite believe your story with or without a receipt. Customer distractions can lead to customer dissatisfaction and THAT can hurt future sales from that shopper and those friends of theirs they talk to about their experience.
I want to digress for a moment and talk about those websites that allege to “show” or “tell” someone how to remove Sensormatic hard tags without the proper removal tool only a store should possess. After reading through several of these sites I just shook my head in disgust. First, if I take them at their word that they are “helping” those who have made purchases and found a tag left on their merchandise, I can still say they are not helping. The methods that I was reading about would very likely lead to damaged product completely defeating the purpose for not returning to the store. The methods could also result in injury to the person following the ill-advised instructions. I do not wish to see people get injured especially when they are following stupid advice. Second, I don’t buy that the writers or videographer wannabe’s are really trying to help hapless shoppers. I happen to believe the intention of these people is to encourage theft. Why would they do that? I can’t speak to their reasoning, of course I can’t explain why people want to shoplift either all I know is I have dedicated many years to catching and stopping criminals.
Retail owners and managers please heed my recommendation, use electronic article surveillance in your store. If you have an older system, consider upgrading to a newer, more energy-efficient Sensormatic system. Use genuine Sensormatic hard tags to protect against theft and increase the profit for your store through reduced shortage and increased sales (resulting from the decreased theft). I can hear it now, “But you just told me that there can be customer service issues if cashiers don’t remove tags”. What I said was there can be problems if a system is not implemented properly. That is where Loss Prevention Systems, Inc. (LPSI) comes in to play. With the purchase of a new Sensormatic security system from LPSI you receive the training you and your team need to properly operate a system. From tagging of products to system testing and alarm response LPSI will ensure your store will operate an effective anti-theft program.
Faulty loss prevention equipment, lack of training and poor tag removal processes can hurt a store’s reputation. Sensormatic has a reputation as a leader in retail theft prevention and is used by retailers world-wide to help fight shortage and improve profits. LPSI will show you how you can have great responsibility as you as add the great power of a Sensormatic electronic article surveillance system.
For more information on Sensormatic hard tags contact us or call 1.866.914.2567.