A store I previously worked for had a good clothing security program in place, but there was still a great deal of loss in all of the clothing departments. There was usually an employee attending the changing rooms and ensuring that customers came out with the same amount of items they brought into the room. We also used hard Checkpoint Tags on the more expensive items, and items that were considered to be in a higher theft category.
Even with this clothing security strategy in place, we were still finding several clothing price tags in the changing and fitting rooms on a regular basis. Something wasn’t adding up to me, so I decided to have the fitting room attendants check all of the rooms each hour, and log what they found along with the time and what room it was found. The findings were surprising, because they didn’t seem to be consistent with a shoplifter. When I examined the logs they completed, I found that there were consistently clothing tags being found in the rooms when the first log was completed in the morning. In addition, I checked the previous night’s logs, and found that the rooms were found to be clear at the end of the night, so that could only mean that the thefts were occurring after the last log was completed or before the first log was completed.
This meant that the thefts were being committed by someone that was working at the store, so I then opened an employee theft investigation. I had no idea who could have been stealing the clothes at the time, so I decided to go back to the basics and sit and watch the area to see who was going in and out. If you’re having recurring theft issues in your store and can’t figure out what, or who is causing the problem, you may want to conduct a random surveillance of different areas in your store. This is a good way to find out what’s really going on in your store, and all you have to do is to sit back and observe…well you also might want to take notes. It’s best to do this by using remote surveillance, or hiding out in an office that has access to the cameras in the store. As long as no one sees you or knows that you are in the building, you should be fine.
In this case though, I had a general idea that an employee was stealing in the fitting room, I just didn’t know who it was or the method of operation they were using, so the surveillance wasn’t random, but rather focused. It was kind of like looking for a shoplifter, but instead of watching customers, I was watching the employees in the store. Sure enough, during my second surveillance of the area, I was watching an early morning stock employee browsing through the clothing. They seemed to be avoiding clothing that had Checkpoint Tags attached to them, but were still selecting quite a few items at once. After that they went into the fitting rooms as expected with an armful of clothing, and when they came out, the selected clothes were nowhere in sight. Later the room was searched and of course we found tags on the floor. We eventually interviewed the employee and found that they were putting on the stolen clothes under their own.
For more information contact us: Clothing Security or call 1.770.426.0547