Things to do during and after a robbery in a business store
Robbery can take place in a business store anytime and that can lead to huge loss to an owner who runs the operations. A recent FBI study says that retail stores are the primary target for robberies. Most robberies happen with arms which increase the crime rates. While some business stores follow certain preventive measures, some others don’t implement them properly. Whether it is an employee or customer, they should know how to protect themselves when a robbery happens in a business store.
Robbers mainly target the cash box in a business store require more protection. However, some may attack employees and customers when they are not able to reach the cash box area which makes the situation very worse. Therefore, it is necessary to handle the situation carefully for avoiding casualties. This will help to experience peace of mind from potential risks to a large extent. A retail store should focus more on creating a safer environment for staffs and customers in order to control unwanted issues. Another thing is that it makes feasible ways to control crime rates with high success rates.
What employees should do during and after the robbery in a store or business
Employees in a store or business should follow certain things during the robbery and after a robbery in a store or business. A retail store should train the employees effectively to manage the things after a robbery. Below are some tips available for them during the robbery.
Things to do during the robbery
- Understanding the objective of robbers
Employees should listen to robbers to know their demands in detail which will help a lot to understand their objectives. It is advisable not to indulge in any other activities that can result in more problems. They should cooperate with the robbers for avoiding crimes.
- Not using weapons
Employees in a store or business shouldn’t use any weapons against the robbers. This will cause troubles to customers which can result in law and order issue. Hence, it is a wise one not to use any dangerous weapons during the robbery.
- Making notes of robbers
An employee should make a note of robbers such as age, mannerisms, characteristics, tattoo, birthmarks, scars, height, weight, types of clothes worn, jewelry used, speech patterns, accent, and the type of weapons utilized.
- Noticing vehicle numbers
Most robbers use either motorcycles or car vehicles and employees should do certain things when they leave a store. Some of them include registration number, color, make, license numbers and other distinguishing features.
- Keeping calm
The working staffs in a store or business should remain calm during the robbery. Another thing is that they shouldn’t fight with them that can result in risks.
- Not making any sudden movements
Employees shouldn’t indulge in any sudden movements during the robbery because robbers can target them with weapons which result in injuries and other problems.
- Not performing any suspicious activities
It is advisable not to perform any suspicious activities during the robbery which can trigger problems to a large extent. Moreover, customers may face attacks from robbers that will make the situation out of control.
- Giving the bait money
The primary objective of a robber is to steal money from the cash box. Bait currency is the normal currency which comes with recorded serial numbers. This will help a lot to track them as soon as possible. Employees can give the bait money to robbers when they demand cash from them.
- Following the commands of robbers
Employees should focus on getting the robbers out of a store as quick as possible in order to prevent causalities. Hence, it advisable to hear the commands of robbers and follow them properly for preventing any unwanted issues.
- Not indulging in any action
There are some employees who may perform some actions in order to become a hero among customers. However, it is advisable to avoid them because they can jeopardize the safety of other people including visitors in a store.
Things to do after a robbery
Employees in a retail store should follow certain things after a robbery that can help to get peace of mind.
- Calling police immediately
It is an important one to call the police immediately after the robbery. The police officers will come to the spot quickly to control the situations with attention. In addition, they will try to collect more details about the robbers from employees to take further actions.
- Closing the doors
Employees shouldn’t allow any new persons into a store and they should close the doors for restricting the entry until the police arrive. This will help a lot to minimize confusions and other problems.
- Taking care of injured people
The working staffs should take care of injured persons after the robbery. They should provide first aid for overcoming complications significantly. Along with that, they should call an ambulance when the injuries are severe.
- Activating the alarm
Employees should activate an alarm system after the robbery for creating awareness about the incident which will help to prevent any unwanted issues.
- Asking witnesses to remain until the police arrive
Employees should ask witnesses to remain in the store until the police arrive. It anyone wants to leave a store, they should collect the names and addresses with attention.
- Not allowing others to touch anything
In most cases, police officers will take the fingerprints of criminals after the robbery. Hence, employees shouldn’t allow other employees and customers to touch anything until the police arrive. Besides that, it is a wise one to prevent anyone from going to areas where robbers have been.
- Writing down the description
The working staffs in a store should write down the description and facts about the robbery which will help in the investigation process.
- Stopping the business operations temporarily
A business store should stop the operations quickly after the robbery. The employees should display a sign that the business is temporarily closed due to an emergency. This, in turn, gives ways to complete all procedures related to investigation procedures.
- Cooperating with investigation officersEmployees should cooperate with investigation officers after the robbery. In fact, they should assist them in every possible way to identify the robbers with ease.
- Not discussing the robbery with others
The working staffs in a store shouldn’t discuss with others after the robbery. This will help a lot to lower unwanted problems effectively.
- Not chasing or following the robbers
Employees shouldn’t chase or follow the robbers after the robbery and doing so will result in many problems.
- Preserving the evidence
It is necessary to preserve the evidence after the robbery in a store. In addition, it gives ways to solve a case in quick turnaround time.
- Intimating the amount of cash stolen
Employees should tell the exact amount of cash stolen to police officers during the robbery for recording purposes. In addition, it gives ways to retrieve them properly when robbers get arrested by the police.
Worker compensation insurance for employees after a robbery
There are several business stores cover worker’s compensation benefits to employees enabling them to get more protection from injuries. An employee should notify the employer about the crimes and injuries in detail after the robbery that can help to claim compensations without any difficulties.
However, an employer should file the compensation claim as soon as possible after receiving the details from an employee. When employees suffered through a robbery at work, they have a right to get fair treatments after the injuries.
Most states follow a victim’s compensation program to help affected individuals including employees to pay for the bills and other expenses. To qualify for victim compensation funds, one should have some monetary damages. Some employers even provide medical services for employees who suffer from psychological problems.
Customers in a robbery
Sometimes, customers may become the victims of robbery when they visit a business store in a location. Therefore, they should keep certain things in mind during the robbery and after the robbery for eliminating unwanted problems.
Things customers should do during a robbery
- Avoiding panic conditions
In most cases, customers may become panic during the robbery that can affect them in many ways. It is a wise one to manage panic conditions in a store by staying calm which will help to minimize stress and other problems.
- Not taking any risks
Customers should not take any risks during the robbery because that can lead to assaults and firing. They should avoid making any sudden movements and perform overreactions that can result in several problems.
- Obeying the commands
Robbers may order some commands to customers and they should obey them correctly to minimize potential threats. In addition, they should avoid eye contacts with the robbers which can result in various issues.
- Not moving from an area immediately
Customers shouldn’t leave an area immediately during the robbery in a store. Another thing is that it will help to prevent attacks from robbers significantly.
- Not indulging in verbal arguments
Indulging in verbal arguments with robbers can bring more troubles to customers and they shouldn’t discuss anything with each other during the robbery.
- Observing everything
A customer should observe everything during the robbery which will help to prevent any problems. Apart from that, it gives ways to experience more protection for reducing the risks to a large extent.
Things customers should do after the robbery
- Not touching anything
A customer should avoid touching any objects in robbery areas for taking the finger prints of robbers with ease.
- Working with the police officers
Police officers sometimes need witnesses for the robbery to find the culprits and customers should cooperate with them during the investigation process.
- Narrating the incident
Customers should narrate the robbery incident to concerned authorities after asked by them to do so.
- Reporting injuries
Robbers may attack some customers when they face any threats from them. This will result in injuries and damages that can affect the quality of life. Injured victims should report to a store owner and law enforcement authorities for receiving funds as soon as possible.
How to create a safer environment for employees and customers
It is the duty of a retail store or business to create a safer environment for both customers and employees for preventing robberies and other things. Retail stores and businesses should implement certain important things that can do major wonders. Some of them include:
- Install Security Cameras at your Business
In today’s world, a specific or business owner needs to take the required steps to protect themselves, and their investments. While many go with a complete security system, which is always a good idea, the addition of security cameras can help to record any/all activities that happen in and around a particular location. Security cams are not only created for outdoors use, but are also frequently utilized inside.
When it concerns reasons that you must consider setting up security cameras, listed below are five of the finest:
Security cameras offer constant monitoring of your business even when you are not there. Let’s face it. There is no chance that you can be 2 places simultaneously. When you are not at work, security electronic cameras can be your eyes even when you can not be there personally.
If set up at your work security cameras can assist you to see who is outdoors your front door or before opening the door or venturing outside. This is a very essential safety precaution for anybody, whether you work out in the most rural of settings or in the city. It’s constantly an excellent concept to see who is at your door prior to you open it and if you think someone is hanging outside your business , security cameras can help to either validate or get rid of that issue.
If a theft needs to occur, making use of security video cameras can offer valuable proof to help find guilty the perpetrator and perhaps even recover your taken item(s). This holds true of both house and business burglaries. In addition, a home or business that is monitored with a security electronic camera might carry more budget-friendly insurance since it is less desirable for bad guys who know they are being monitored. For the specific policy guidelines, contact your local insurance coverage agent.
When used in a business, security electronic cameras can help employers and shopkeeper to keep a close eye on their employees. Tracking of employee actions can assist in a variety of scenarios, consisting of possible employee theft, customer grievances and other matters where video playback may be helpful.
- Training employees effectively
A retail store should train its employees on how to manage the problems during the robbery and after the robbery that can help prevent crimes.
- Depositing cash in the banks
A retail store shouldn’t store cash in its place and employees should deposit the same in banks regularly for overcoming unwanted issues. At the same time, it is advisable to follow safety measures while caring the cash to a bank.
- Not providing any opportunities for robbery
The retail stores should focus more on improving the infrastructure facilities for controlling the robbery. A smarter and discreet approach is to hide a cash drawer from general public view with innovative ideas that can help to reduce the crimes.
- Building and parking lot security
The retail stores should strengthen their building fencing and parking lot security that could slow a robber’s escape. Some of them include speed bumps, three side fencing, in front parking, and only one exit. All of them will help to reduce the robbery in a store.
- Seeking police protection
A retail store should seek support from law enforcement authorities for monitoring the movements of robbers carefully. They should make planned and unplanned visits to a store which gives ways to ensure protection from robbers.
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What is Shoplifting?
The criminal action of taking goods from a business while pretending to be a consumer. Shoplifting is a serious problem in the retail stores. It causes great loss to the retail stores by shrinking their business operations. Shoplifting is the single largest cause of shrinkage for retail business in the US. The stores are losing billions annually due to shoplifting. The repeat offenders are the more worrying for the stores as they cause the most damage to them.
Shoplifting badly affects the profitability of retail stores. Store owners are doing their best to protect themselves from shoplifters. Contrary to popular belief, studies have shown that shoplifters do not have a predominant profile. They can be anyone between us so it is difficult to identify them by just looking at them.
You can take preventive measures like installing security and surveillance devices to stay protected. The store can make use of security mirrors and an open layout to enhance the visibility and eliminate any blind spots. Anti-theft tags and security guards can also be used to provide added protection from shoplifters. It is known that shoplifters target stores with poor surveillance systems and security measures. Hence, installing adequate safety measures will act as an effective deterrent for the shoplifters.Anti-theft training’s are also becoming important these days.
Such training’s help to protect the stores from shoplifters by providing suitable training to the staff in dealing with and managing such situations more effectively. Anti-theft training also ensures that the staff are safe while dealing with shoplifting incidents. There are many cases of shoplifting turning violent and armed robberies as well. These situations put the staff at great risk and it is the responsibility of the employer to protect their staff from such dangers by employing a combination or operational and procedural controls.
Loss to Business from Shoplifting
Shoplifting is one of the biggest losses to any retail store. US Businesses are losing more than $60 billion annually due to shoplifting. According to the study conducted by National Retail Federation in 2017, there are 3 major reasons for retail loss, known as shrinkage. Shoplifting is the largest reason of shrinkage at 37%. The average dollar cost per shoplifting incident was reported to be $798.48 in 2017. It is evident that controlling shoplifting will go a long way in reducing the retail shrinkage and contribute towards improving the profitability of operations. The retail stores need to take a more proactive approach in reducing shoplifting incidents.
Identifying Potential Shoplifters
Identifying shoplifters can be difficult. According to the National Association of Shoplifting Prevention, there is no single and predominant shoplifter profile. Both men and women steal equally as often and more than 75% of all shoplifters are adults. Another study conducted by the University of Florida has revealed that there is no stereotypes that can be used for identifying shoplifters. Hence, you cannot rely on any preconceived notions and stereotypes for identifying shoplifters in your store. You need to be more alert and proactive in spotting them. Shoplifters are common people in everyday life who mostly earn respectable wages.
It is the repeat and habitual offenders who cost the business the most. Such shoplifters are adept at their work and target stores that lack proper surveillance system and adequate security. In a study involving more than 20,000 adults including juvenile and non-juvenile shoplifters, it was revealed that 27% of the shoplifters were habitual offenders. These habitual offenders are responsible for about 90% of the non-professional losses and 85% of shoplifting losses. You need to have adequate surveillance and security at your retail store to deter and prevent shoplifters from stealing. You should also have a clear policy of how you want to deal with shoplifters. Stricter punishments will prevent them from shoplifting.
Keeping Your Premises Secure from Shoplifters
You can reduce on the shoplifting incidents by taking adequate and appropriate preventive measures in your retail store. Some of the key measures for preventing shoplifting are discussed below:
Organize Your Store with Signs and Mirrors
Majority of the shoplifting incidents are not preplanned and based on acts of impulse. According to a survey conducted by the National Association of Shoplifting Prevention (NASP), 73% of the total shoplifting cases are not premeditated. You can organize your retail store properly to cut down on shoplifting. You can have an open floor layout and ensure proper lighting so that most of the store is visible. Keep your exit near the front of the store rather than at the back.
You should put security mirrors in the store. These mirrors help you to see the store clearly and eliminate any blind spots. You should also put messages on what the store intends to do to shoplifters who get caught. These signs act as deterrents to shoplifters but are also needed for legal reasons. If you intend to prosecute a shoplifter, then you should have it posted in the store first.
Recruit Good Staff and Train Them
Recruitment of proper employees and training them goes a long way on reducing the incidences of shoplifting. Do proper background checks of applicants before recruiting them. You can also review their social media profiles to get a better understanding of the applicants. This will help you to employ only the best people at your retail store.
You should provide adequate anti-theft training to your staff and make them understand the importance of prevention of shoplifting and loss to the business. you should motivate your staff to be alert and reduce the cases of shoplifting. Motivated and well-trained staff can contribute significantly towards reducing shoplifting in the retail store.
Install Surveillance Equipment
Installing proper surveillance equipment is the most important deterrent for shoplifters. You can install high-quality and resolution CCTV cameras that will cover the total interior and exterior of your retail store. The store can display the message that the store is under CCTV surveillance that will act as a great deterrent for shoplifters as they run the risk of getting caught immediately.
The cameras should not be discreet rather they should be placed for everyone to see them. The display also should be located strategically where everyone can see themselves. You can also opt for video analytics software which is a high-end surveillance system that digitally monitors the customers and employees in real time and alerts you of any indifferent behavior. It also allows you to view any transaction and video footage associated with any item on the receipt.
Use Anti-Theft Tags
There are three common types of anti-theft tags that you can use in your store- Acousto-Magnetic tags, RFID tags, and Spider Wrap. The acousto-magnetic tags are narrow white tags that are deactivated by passing them under demagnetizer. Retail RFID tags are stickers on pin-tag radio-frequency identification devices attached to the products in the store. If any customer walks out of the store, with the RFID tag still attached to the product, it will set off an alarm near the exit door.
This will notify the store security about a potential case of shoplifting. The cost of RFID tags varies based on their level of sophistication and range. Spider wraps are wrapped around the products and these tags have an alarm built into them. Cutting these spider wrap tags will set off an alarm. These anti-theft tags can reduce the instances of shoplifting in any retail store.
Hire Security Guards
Hiring security guards is a good strategy to deter shoplifters. These security guards can be armed or unarmed depending on the requirement of the store. They are trained to monitor any instances of shoplifting. Though uninformed guards are great deterrents for shoplifters, they can also make the regular customers uncomfortable. Another effective alternative is to hire security guards in plain clothing. This will not make the regular customers uncomfortable and the guards can lookout for any shoplifters in plain clothing which even the shoplifters will not know of. Hiring security guards from a professional and reputed agency is a worthwhile investment for protecting your retail store from unscrupulous shoplifters.
Have Clear and Strict Policies on Shoplifters
Letting go of the shoplifters on being caught is not a good strategy. On being let go, the shoplifters will become more confident of stealing again. You should have a clear and strict policy on dealing with shoplifters. When the shoplifters know that they will be dealt with sternly on getting caught, they will be less likely to indulge in such activities. You can formulate a policy that the shoplifters will be reported to the local police department for taking further action. This will act as a strong deterrent to the shoplifters for shoplifting in your store.
Anti-Theft Trainings- Overview and Benefits
Anti-theft trainings are becoming popular. Such trainings equip the staff to manage any instances of shoplifting in a more effective and better manner. The training intends to equip the staff on identifying the potential shoplifters and how they can engage more meaningfully with their customers to prevent the cases of shoplifting. The anti-theft training helps to reduce the losses and shrinkages caused to the business by shoplifting. This contributes positively towards improving the bottom line for the business. With increasing incidents of shoplifting and the number of repeat offenders growing, Anti-theft training should become mandatory for the staff. The key benefits offered by anti-theft training are provided below:
One of the direct contributions of anti-theft training to business is reduced shrinkage due to shoplifting. Shoplifting is a major nuisance in retail business and is the single largest shrinkage causing factor in the US. With proper anti-theft training, the retail store can become better and more adept at curbing the cases of shoplifting. It can make use of effective and modern surveillance systems that can deter the shoplifters. Anti-theft training also provides other effective means of reducing and curbing shoplifting in retail stores. Use of security mirrors, messages on action to be taken on shoplifters, use of anti-theft tags etc. are some of the measures suggested by anti-theft training to cut down on shoplifting.
Better Trained Staff
The staff at retail stores become better trained and more effective in reducing instances of shoplifting. The staff understand the problem and magnitude of shoplifting and the damage they cause to the business operations. Once they are trained, they become more effective in stopping shoplifting. They become better at identifying potential shoplifters and this gives them a head start in preventing shoplifting at their stores. The staff are provided inputs on how to manage the situation in case of shoplifting incidents. They are trained on checking the various security and surveillance measures installed in the retail stores to ensure that shoplifters are kept in check.
Safety of Staff
Shoplifters need to be confronted tactfully. Once the store staff has established that shoplifting has taken place then they need to act is a standard protocol as per their internal policies. Anti-theft training helps them to tackle such situations and prepares them to manage the shoplifters effectively. Any confrontation or act of aggression from the store staff can provoke the shoplifter and this can cause harm to the store staff. Undergoing anti-theft training helps them to manage the situation better and be safe.
Do a Thorough Risk Assessment
You should do a thorough risk assessment for any potentially violent and harmful situations that may arise in the future for the staff. Situations like shoplifting, robbery, and assault, abusive and difficult customers etc. need to be accounted for. These situations can be dangerous for the staff and can put them in grave risk. A comprehensive assessment of such risks helps the employers to understand the different situations and risks that may confront their employees in the future. They can develop better risk mitigation strategies and responses to protect their staff from such dangers.
Appropriate Steps for Risk Mitigation
Once the risks have been identified, you need to develop appropriate risk mitigation strategies to address the same. You can undertake a combination of physical and procedural controls to mitigate such risks. The store should be carefully designed with an open layout for better view of the entire store by the staff. Appropriate and better surveillance equipment can be installed throughout the store to keep an eye on any unscrupulous people. Suitable messages should be displayed throughout the store on what the store intends to do with anyone caught shoplifting or entering into any violent acts. The staff should also be trained properly on dealing with such situations. There should be clear and well-documented procedures on how they need to deal with such risks and situations.
Involve Staff for Inputs
Your employees know a lot about the business so it is important to involve them and take their inputs on potential risks for violence. Inputs from staff can provide detailed insights into aspects like when and where the staff can be at risk, how they plan to deal with such situations, details of individuals who have resorted to similar behavior in the past etc. The employees should be motivated to participate and give their views on potential violence during shoplifting. A participative approach along with the inputs of staff will help to come out with more effective strategies to deal with such situations.
Have Clear Standard Procedures
The employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthy working environment to their staff. All the staff should be provided adequate training on their job roles and the work environment they will be working in. There should be clearly documented procedures of what needs to be done in case of any violent shoplifting or robbery incident. The staff should know about the standard protocols of managing the cash counter. They should be aware of the steps they should take for managing money in the store and for making bank deposits.
Working alone also entails risks and the staff should know the procedures they need to follow during such cases. Once the staff are aware of the standard operating procedures in such situations, they are able to deal with the situation much better. The likelihood of them getting in danger reduces considerably and they will remain safe and protected during any such unfortunate happening. CWP