5 ways empowered teams can deal with in-store losses

Article by Martyn Jones | 13th July 2021

Whether through shoplifting, colleague theft or simple carelessness, stock losses are a major frustration for retailers:

  • UK retailers lose an estimated £10 billion a year to stock shrinkage 
  • Criminal activity cost UK retailers £2.2 billion in 2019
  • £770 million of this was the result of shoplifting 

There is never a good time to lose stock, but the financial burden of the pandemic has made it more important than ever to keep losses to a minimum. Losing stock at a time like this is a double blow. Not only do you lose a potential sale, you also incur the cost of replacing the item. 

Sadly, it seems that some criminals have seen the pandemic as an opportunity to step up their activities:

  • Face masks have made it harder to identify shoplifters
  • The increase in self-checkout usage has made it easier to steal
  • Social distancing rules have made it more difficult for security colleagues to monitor customer activity

We hate to see criminals taking advantage of businesses at such a vulnerable time. Luckily, there is a solution. VoCoVo improves team communication so that you can stay one step ahead of shoplifters. 

1. Better communication

Communication is your best defence against crime. Our headsets keep colleagues connected at all times, allowing you to present a united front against shoplifters:

  • Colleagues can alert security teams to suspicious activity from anywhere in store
  • Unlike a tannoy announcement, this can be done without alerting criminals
  • You can create a separate channel for security colleagues so that they are not distracted by other conversations (Available as an add-on feature)
  • Colleagues in larger stores can warn other departments about suspicious customers 

2. Contact emergency services

As well as connecting colleagues, our headsets can also make and receive external calls. VoCoVo can be integrated with your current telephony provider, or can replace it altogether. Not only does this allow you to take customer calls from the shop floor, it also helps to reduce crime. As soon as an incident occurs, colleagues can use their headsets to contact emergency services without having to search for a phone.  

Find out more about improving security with VoCoVo

3. CCTV and tannoy integration

VoCoVo doesn’t just provide new ways to fight crime- it also makes the old ways more effective: 

  • Our system can be integrated with your store’s CCTV cameras. When the cameras spot something suspicious, an automated alert will be sent to all headsets. 
  • We can link VoCoVo to your existing tannoy system. Colleagues can issue public security alerts from anywhere in store without giving away their identity or location. 

4. Send alerts to the entire network

Shoplifting is rarely an isolated incident. Criminals work together in a methodical way, targeting stores in one area before moving onto the next. This is where our message casting feature comes into its own:

  • HQ can send security alerts to all stores in the network at the same time
  • If criminals have been spotted in a certain area, a message can be sent to all stores in the same region
  • External security teams can stay in touch with on-site security colleagues, working together to manage any threats 

5. Headsets act as a visible deterrent

Reducing losses is not just about catching shoplifters in the act. The most effective approach is preventing crimes before they happen. VoCoVo headsets are immediately recognisable, letting would-be criminals know that colleagues are connected and ready to respond. 

Empowering colleagues to deal with in-store losses is a win-win:  great for business and great for morale.

Get in touch today and let’s put an end to shoplifting.

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