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The Retail Equation Sheds Light On Loss Prevention Statistics

 

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The Ninth Annual Report from The Retail Equation uncovers staggering numbers regarding 2013 merchandise returns in comparison to last years loss prevention awareness trends.


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Employee Theft: An Inside Job

 

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Nearly 1 in 3 American workers admitting to some degree of Employee Theft, let’s explore the scope of the problem.


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An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure

 

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cureOver the past sixteen years I have had many conversations with businesses about loss prevention initiatives. Unfortunately, for the vast majority there is a common theme in the discussion. They are seeking solutions for a crisis that has already occurred.  The two most common situations are shrink issues or a large dishonesty case. I don’t judge. Many companies react to symptoms rather than the signs that predict the problem. Perhaps that is just human nature for some issues—we wait for the problem before we seek a solution or a cure.

 


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Follow the Leader

 

Follow the leader

There is an old proverb that states, “he who thinks he leads but has no followers is only taking a walk.” For all of the books, articles, and seminars on the topic of leadership, one would believe that it requires some form of magic or unique charisma. The truth is that following others is a natural human characteristic. The problem is that the inherent programming to “follow” doesn’t include an equally inherent set of standards on “who” to follow.


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Loss Prevention and Your Brand

 

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 The breach of Target’s consumer data in December had a significant impact on the retailer’s holiday season. In truth, with industry consumer foot traffic down over 14% sales weren’t going to be exceptional anyway. In addition, although I’m not familiar with the details of Target’s line of responsibility structure, the breach probably had little to do with traditional loss prevention roles.


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The 2nd Mouse Gets The Cheese

 

The mouse gets the cheese

The consumer market has weathered a very long storm. Since 2008 retailers and restaurants have been on a roller coaster of hope and despair. Although there are some positive outlooks for the year (NRF predicts a 4.1% growth in 2014), it is doubtful anyone will be quick throw off the cautious and conservative decision-making attitudes of the past five years. Companies are faced with a loss prevention paradox. On the one hand, budget and personnel have seen decreases as a part of the cost-saving measures. Conversely the less efforts and resources allocated to this important function, the greater the chance that any savings will be eroded by increased losses. The situation suggests the need for a change in attitude and approach.


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Benchmarking the Past

 


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Does Your LP Program Have Tunnel Vision?

 

Loss Prevention Tunnel Vision

Probably—and I say that with all due respect to your efforts. Humans are specialists by nature. That is we tend to gravitate towards the things we know, the things we like, and the things that we are good at. Past experiences also lend a hand in defining the focus of our attention. Complete objectivity is difficult and while we shouldn’t advocate “doing things just to do them,” when it comes to loss prevention striking the proper balance is critical to success.


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Why An LP Program Needs a Strategic Business Plan Foundation

 

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In many businesses the term loss prevention is a bit of a misnomer. While certainly the philosophy is to prevent loss of profits and assets, in practice there is often very little prevention and much reaction. Many initiatives become focused on the reactionary processes of LP. Resources are allocated to chase dishonest employees, ORC rings, shoplifters and other crisis level security issues. These efforts are often required as a nature of the LP role, however, failure to apply efforts strategically ultimately results in dire consequences for the program and an inability to get ahead of shrink because too much time is expended putting out the fires.


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Is the decision to outsource the same as hiring an internal candidate?

 

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Outsourcing has become a more widely accepted practice across various industries and business functions. However, with 15 years of experience in providing these services, we still continue to come across people who are skeptical and apprehensive about outsourcing. It is a decision that involves both a logical decision as much as an emotional decision. Is it any different than hiring an internal resource?


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