11 Sep 2019

Beyond the Price Tag: How Multi-Layered Security is Making Retail Environments Safer

Retailers have a great deal to protect. From the moment a customer pulls into the parking lot, security officers are tasked with creating a safe and secure experience for shoppers. All stakeholders, from small shop owners to multi-story corporate shopping centers, look to not only create a secure work space for employees, but also protect inventory from theft and prevent retail fraud. And with an estimated $98 billion lost to theft annually, the need to find a reliable security solution is crucial for the success of businesses in this market.

But with store facilities that vary in scale and security requirements, where should a retailer start? In this environment, an integrated, multi-layer approach is recommended to help cover all of the bases and deliver 24/7 protection that can significantly reduce inventory shrinkage. Let’s explore the various layers and the benefit each can provide for retailers:

Employee Training

Responsible for executing store opening and closing procedures, stocking inventory, operating cash registers and interacting with customers, employees are one of your most important security resources. With staff on the frontline during some of the busiest shopping hours, training employees to have an observant and vigilant mindset when assisting customers can help prevent criminal activity. Also, by making staff members aware of threats to the business’s perimeter —like keeping an eye out for strangers trying to enter when an employee accesses the facility via keycard — employees can help deter theft and prevent unauthorized facility access. 

Video Surveillance

With approximately 130 million video cameras shipped last year alone, it is evident video surveillance is one of the most sought after security solutions for organizations. Retailers are able to utilize video surveillance solutions to monitor shop floors and help prevent theft, and if incidents should occur, video footage can help provide evidence for subsequent investigations. But that isn’t the only benefit of video for retailers. Increasingly, video is helping to improve customer service and provide business value. In some cases, retail managers can remotely monitor video and open additional registers if check out lines become too long. 

Access Control

Long gone are the days of issuing employees a traditional metal key for business entry. Today’s modern access control systems are made up of readers and credentials that offer organizations the ability to control access with key fobs, smart cards, Bluetooth readers, remote entry authorization and even biometrics in some cases. Access control solutions give organizations the ability to restrict access to areas that house assets, such as stockrooms where valuable inventory is stored, further assisting to decrease retail shrinkage. A central database also enables businesses to manage access for employees based on work schedules, ensuring only necessary personnel are entering the building.

While there are several strategies to support retail security efforts, creating a multi-layered approach that combines employee awareness, video surveillance and access control systems can provide a comprehensive, effective solution that gives retailers the ability to create safe, secure environments that protect their customers, employees and business assets.