Forms Of Employee Theft
The most common form of employee theft is stealing cash from the cash register or from the company account. Other forms include time card fraud, office supply theft, and product inventory theft.
Employee Theft On The Rise
It is estimated that companies and business owners lost over $50 billion in 2012 due to employee theft. In fact, businesses lose more money due to employee theft than from shoplifters.
Employee Theft Prevention Tips
The best way to deal with employee theft is to stop it before it happens. Here are some things that, as a business owner, you can do to prevent your employees from stealing from you.
Learn about your potential employees before you hire them. See if they have any criminal activity in their background or anything that could indicate that they might steal from you. It is legal to conduct background checks on people for employment but few businesses utilize this important tool.
Proper Checks and Balances
Have a system set up so that employees can check each other’s work. For example, the person that handles the company petty cash should never also handle the receipts that show where the cash is being distributed.
Make sure that your employee parking is not too close to your building where you keep your inventory. You don’t want to make it convenient for them to easily load up their vehicles. I once knew a person that owned a company that sold car stereos. His employees parked right by the door to the inventory warehouse. Near the end of the working day they would take a couple stereos and place them right outside the warehouse door. When it was time to leave they would simply punch out and then put the stereos in their vehicles as they were leaving.
Have Written Policies
Make it very clear to your employees that them stealing from your business will not be tolerated. Be sure to list the actions you would take in the event of employee theft such as termination, prosecution, and restitution.
Security Cameras and Monitoring Systems
Installing security cameras in key areas such cash registers, inventory area, and the parking lot would help cut employee theft. The fear of getting caught keeps most people honest. Employees that know that they are being watched and monitored at all times are much less likely to steal than those that are not. With today’s technology you can have a CCTV security system with remote monitoring at an very affordable cost that will save you and your business a lot of money down the road.