To avoid losses in your retail business, you must know the potential causes and risks. Hiring a skilled loss prevention officer would be the best choice to solve the losses in the facility. The loss prevention officer is important in catching thieves, conducting CCTV surveillance, training staff, evaluating stores, monitoring shoppers, conducting store audits to determine the problem areas, following up investigations among other benefits.
At Green Knight Security, we train our team on observation skills, camera surveillance, and communication skills. Therefore by hiring one of our loss prevention officers, you will ensure there are no more losses in your store or retail business.
Understanding a Loss Prevention Officer Does
A loss prevention officer works in a retail or store to prevent shoplifting and other forms of theft. The officer is in the first line in defense against retail theft. Notably, the private guards patrol the store to investigate, identify and catch shoplifters. Note that the officers are not a part of the law enforcement agency.
Therefore their conduct is controlled by state laws. Additionally, the loss prevention officer cannot falsely or use unreasonable force against the shoplifter. Once the loss prevention officer uses excessive force to detain the shoplifter for suspected theft, the shoplifter may seek help from their attorney.
A loss prevention officer is not a police officer but an employee of a corporation. Therefore, the loss prevention officers cannot charge a shoplifter with a crime. However, they will detain them, and ask some questions, then call police officers. Once the police officer shows up, the loss prevention officer will tell their story. The loss prevention officer will arrest the culprit and charge them with shoplifting.
The loss prevention officer needs probable cause to make an arrest. That means they must observe the shoplifter approach, select, conceal and fail to make payments for an item to support the claim of shoplifting. Notably, they must prove their surveillance isn't interrupted, and they confront the accused after they pass the cash register.
The loss prevention officer must use reasonable force when detaining the suspect. For instance, if the loss prevention officer injures the suspect, they are more than likely used more than reasonable force. However, if the suspect assaults the loss prevention officer, the law authorizes them to apply proportional force against the suspect in self-defense doctrine.
Reasons Why You Should Have a Competent Loss Prevention Officer
Below are the reasons why you should hire a skilled loss prevention officer for your retail business or store:
Every year, retail businesses lose stock worth millions of dollars due to theft. Identifying, observing, and apprehending shoplifters is one of the significant roles of loss prevention officers. They spend many hours on the sales floor keeping customers, pushing carts away, watching the surroundings, and mingling with shoppers. Notably, thieves and shoplifters may put your retail chain out of business quickly. They may have a significant impact on the independent stores or regional chains.
Therefore you need to hire a loss prevention expert for your firm. With their training and experience, they understand common tricks used by thieves and use their skills to prevent theft cases. Additionally, competent loss prevention officers will identify potential thieves and catch them before stealing and prevent similar crimes in the future, thus putting your merchandise in a safe environment.
If you hire untrained staff, your business may be at the risk of collapsing. It might be challenging for the unskilled personnel to monitor internal and external theft in the facility. For instance, untrained staff may not detect theft through cameras. However, you can prevent the problem by hiring a skilled loss prevention officer to train the other team.
For effective loss prevention in your business, the loss prevention officers must work together with retail staff since the officers cannot be everywhere at the same time. That is why they will train the other staff members on theft prevention techniques and observe to prevent the store or company from losing money.
Managing the Inventory
Inventory management's effectiveness is crucial in determining the loss and profit in a store/company. Every company is in business to make huge profits from their sales. If you eliminate theft, loss, and damages, inventories may be effectively monitored and managed, thus maximizing profits.
Therefore the question you should ask yourself is, how you will reduce the theft cases on your premises. Having a skilled and talented loss prevention officer is a step toward preventing loss and reckless property damage in your firm.
A business premise may face property damages when reckless employees break or damage fragile items, objects fall from the roof of the building and destroy several items. Additionally, bad weather may destroy several products assembled in the building's open corridor, and a fire outbreak may cause massive destruction of your property. To avoid the above damages, you should hire a person to carry out a monitor exercise, loss prevention officer.
Apart from preventing theft, a loss prevention officer does more. Loss prevention officers may help you prevent occurrences of damages in your business. Notably, they have varied techniques of preventing damages in your business, including monitoring employee and customer actions then document any suspicious occurrences.
Reckless employees and careless patrons may destroy property and merchandise, causing losses in huge volumes. Damaging property may cost the company more money than theft, affecting its bottom line or store. Skilled surveillance with the best equipment and a talented loss prevention expert may help lookout for any suspicious activity preventing needless damages.
Monitoring Your Shoppers
Your business facility may have a huge number of customers at a time. With a large number of shoppers on the premises, the chances of shoplifting are very high. The ratio of the staff to monitor the shoppers may be very low.
Therefore you should hire a skilled officer to monitor many customers using the CCTV surveillance system. A competent loss prevention officer may monitor all the customers in the store or facility at a go.
They will ensure they observe the shoppers whether walking inside the premises or shopping. He/she will monitor them through the premise security personnel to avoid property from being stolen. They must keep an eye on the emergency exits, delivery areas, back rooms, entrances, and exits.
Evaluating Your Store Or Facility Security
After examining your business firm's security system, you may decide to come up with new security measures. However, you cannot do that alone. You will need someone to assist in the process of implementation of the new standards. Therefore your loss prevention officer will be involved in the process. The loss prevention officer is responsible for recommending the working of the existing security cameras.
Additionally, he/she will propose the areas where they need close monitoring of the cameras. For instance, if the loss prevention officer suspects internal theft at the store, he/she may propose the addition of cameras in the room. If your business has employed security guards, the loss prevention expert works closely with them and ensures they station and patrol the risk areas carefully. The loss prevention officer should evaluate workplace safety to avoid a fire, vandalism, or employee injury.
Apprehending and Providing Assistance During Prosecution Of Shoplifters
As we mentioned above, a loss prevention officer is not the police. He/she doesn't have the right to arrest the shoplifter or violate his/her Miranda rights. However, they work closely with the police to assist them in arresting suspects of theft and providing evidence for prosecution.
A loss prevention officer is essential during the detainment of shoplifters. If he/she observes theft, they contact law enforcement officers to help in the process of arrest. Additionally, they must complete the primary paperwork concerning the incident. Notably, they work closely with the legal representatives and the police officers in providing the evidence required in the prosecution of the shoplifters according to company or store policies. Mostly, the loss prevention officer is summoned to act as the court witness.
Writing Reports On Investigations
After arresting a suspect, the loss prevention officer writes an investigative report. He/she creates the report to use it in the court of law. The report focuses on the primary goal of investigation. Additionally, the report provides information/evidence against the shoplifter.
Moreover, the report has a flow of orders reflecting the facts discovered during the study. The report has dates and stamps showing the time when the incident occurred. The loss prevention officer ensures they logically write the report, stating the problem, leading the investigation results, and the recommendations.
Conducting Store Audits To Determine Problem Areas
By use of quantitative and qualitative metrics, they help in addressing the performance of various efficiencies. This influences and shapes service, security, sales, supervision, administration, supervision, productivity, safety, and any other factors that impact the general profitability and management of your retail business or store. The loss prevention audit helps in maintaining and managing a productive and safe work environment.
The goal of conducting a company or store audit is to expose various types of losses in the facility or serve as additional supplementary functions that further enhance its profitability and performance. The loss prevention expert determines a particular process, task, procedure, or other initiatives under specific predetermined guidelines, regulations, or policies.
Following Up Investigations
Sometimes, thieves may plan criminal activities very well involving more than the suspected one. Arresting only the main suspect may not place your business on the safe side. Therefore you will need to carry out thorough investigative work to prevent further problems. With a skilled loss prevention officer, you will get to the bottom of the case and spot all the other involved suspects. By doing so, you will ensure the same thieves are not a threat to your premises.
Stopping Insider Theft
Sometimes the most damaging theft, and in some situations, the large volumes of robbery in a store come from the insiders or the employees. Internal theft involves employee theft, embezzlement stealing, fraud, defalcation, and speculation. Notably, the employee steals from the employer. Pilferage consists of the employee stealing small portions. Alternatively, embezzlement involves the employee taking property or money entitled to his/her care. In many workplaces, employees tend to steal property from the facility.
To prevent internal theft, the loss prevention expert will use a background check to determine and eliminate future internal theft, separation of space, internal controls, and ID badges. The employees sign a policy for prosecution and contract termination if they steal anything.
Inspecting Your Facility or Store To Identify Security Risks
Since a facility's insecurity may arise from internal and external threats, a loss prevention officer will repeatedly assess the facility both inside and outside. For instance, a machine may collapse and cause fire, and heavy rains may result in floodings or power shortages. All these may result in the premise making losses.
Therefore, the loss prevention officer has to detect the possible insecurity risks through inspecting the building. To avoid the possible insecurity risks, the loss prevention officer will do the following:
Conducting A Regular Risk Assessment
Loss prevention officers will ensure the facility machines are under the operation of a certified and qualified employee. Additionally, they will encourage the employees to report any hazard they identify and suspect would cause damage. They will ensure:
- The items marked fragile should be handled with much care.
- The employees are trained in safe ways when using the job-related equipment and machinery.
- The facility has emergency plans in place.
- The hazardous substances are properly stored.
- Have back up systems in place like water pumps
- Install and regularly inspect fire detection systems like smoke alarms
Collaborating With Law Enforcement Agencies
As we mentioned above, a loss prevention officer isn't a police officer. Therefore after suspecting an incident of theft in your retail business, they need to work with other agencies. The loss prevention officer maintains a positive working environment with the customers and local law enforcement agencies and officials.
After detecting a suspected theft, he /she will collaborate with law enforcement officials and agencies in arresting detention and prosecution. Additionally, they provide the gathered information regarding the nature of the case. The criminal court expects them to attend the court proceedings to provide their evidence against the suspect.
Conducting CCTV Surveillance
CCTV surveillance provides the loss prevention officer with ample evidence to investigate and property recovery initiative. Notably, the cameras help monitor the workplace from the phone, PC, or tablet in real-time. The cameras help show any person entering and leaving the premises when the facility is out of operation. For instance, if the facility does not operate during the night and over the weekend, the loss prevention officer will monitor an entrance and unusual behavior to avoid theft.
The loss prevention expert may use cameras with intruder alarms. The alarms are programmed to start recording once they detect motion simultaneously, causing an alarm. With the CCTV surveillance in work, the loss prevention officer may leave the premises and detect the employees' behaviors once he/she is back.
Maintaining Reports/Documents Of Security
Do you have documents and reports of security in your store or business premises? Security documents are essential in the business firm. You can use them in criminal court against a suspect of theft. Therefore who keeps the documents? Apart from writing the report, a loss prevention officer will also keep the record safe and accessible in times of need. The record captures every incident of insecurity and the time it occurred. Therefore ensure your premise has a loss prevention expert to keep the necessary security documents.
Identifying Any Concerns In Your Business Premise
Sometimes, your retail business may have unusual behaviors taking place during business hours. For instance, two employees may engage in a fight causing damages. Imagine what will happen if no one stops or prevents the fight? Therefore, a loss prevention officer has the duty of identifying and reporting any concerns in the building to maintain a safe shopping and working environment. Note that most customers will be scared to visit and shop there if your business facility is unsafe. Therefore you will end up making losses.
Find A Loss Prevention Officer Near Me
A loss prevention officer is essential in protecting your retail business by preventing vandalism, shoplifting, and theft. Therefore, you want to hire a skilled loss prevention officer today. If you run a retail store in Los Angeles, Green Knight Security is here to help you.
We train our officers on the best security skills. Additionally, our officers will help you catch thieves, monitor shoppers and changing rooms, and work with law enforcement agencies to arrest dishonest employees and suspected shoplifters. Call us today at 844-457-8326 and hire our loss prevention officers.