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5 Ways for Jewelers to Reduce the Risk of Internal Theft

Posted by Kelsey McElrath on Sep 18, 2015 10:41:00 AM

Are you planning for a big boost in sales this holiday season? You’re certainly not alone. Of course, a busy sales season means more work as well as longer hours for you and your team.

5 Ways for Jewelers to Reduce the Risk of Internal Theft

If you’re going to hire extra staff for the peak selling season, plan ahead to help reduce your risk of internal theft with these 5 tips:

1) Assess your training plan

It’s critical to assess your entire team to ensure they are properly trained. Because of the high value and highly portable nature of the merchandise, a jewelry store can be a tempting place for any associate in need of some quick cash. Ask yourself, how hard would it be for associates to:

  • Under-ring tickets and keep the difference
  • Transfer false merchandise returns or layaway plans onto gift cards
  • Hack computers to divert funds
  • Capture funds from payment of fake invoices
  • Pocket merchandise when no one is looking

2) Stay alert

 Make sure your store isn’t an easy target. Monitor all associates who handle jewelry merchandise, engage in financial transactions, or have access to computer systems or financial records.

Make it known that you are periodically and thoroughly checking their work in general, and that this is consistent with the sound financial management of the operation. 

3) Make your associates feel valued 


Employees who steal often think they deserve what they’re taking because they feel underpaid, overworked, undervalued or all of the above. 

The holiday season can aggravate the problem because many people feel strapped for cash and pressured to buy gifts. Make sure your working environment and salaries reflect how you value your associates. Paying a little more up front could help create an environment that saves you money in the long run.

4) Rotate your staffing schedule


Avoid scheduling the same associates working together. When you mix your assignment teams up, you make it harder for criminal collusion when potential associate thieves could team up or cover for one another.

Varying your schedule can also give you an opportunity to more quickly uncover a theft.  While one associate may look the other way, another staff member may be more inclined to report it. 

5) Reconcile your sales daily


Check your receipts daily, and price jewelry merchandise by stamp or machine, rather than by hand. Allow only authorized employees to price jewelry merchandise to avoid intentional under pricing.

Having a disciplined system for pricing and inventory control doesn’t just help prevent internal theft; it’s also helpful in the event of a covered insurance claim, when your insurance carrier will ask you to substantiate your loss.

By planning ahead and starting early, you can help ensure a merry holiday season. 

Looking for a way to train your staff on some basic loss prevention practices and track their progress? Sign your business up for JM University® !

Topics: Staff Procedures

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