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Reduce Employee Theft

Employee theft is estimated to cost American businesses up to $40 billion annually.

Here are ten tips to combat the potential for employee theft:

  1. Run background checks and drug test possible new employees.
  2. Check applicants’ references. They provide them, but do not always expect them to be checked.
  3. Have employees work two at a time, especially for opening and closing shifts. Rotate pairs of employees working together to diversify accountability.
  4. Implement virtual deterrents like video surveillance and/or an exception-based reporting system.
  5. Monitor the trash! Merchandise can be mixed into the trash and retrieved later.
  6. Establish an opportunity for employees to confidentially report suspicious behavior from their co-workers.
  7. Take the time to get to know your employees. If you know they are experiencing high stress levels or financial troubles, you can anticipate threats of theft.
  8. Communicate standards of conduct. Be clear and direct about what you expect.
  9. Perform regular audits on inventory, expense reports, cash and sales reconciliation, and any other applicable areas.
  10. Look out for warning signs! Over-protectiveness of work space, no vacation time, and/or unexpected change in behavior can be indications of something awry.

Resources for this article can be found here and here.