Nearly 23 percent of surveyed retailers report overall inventory shrink increasing to 2 percent or more of sales, while 65 percent of retailers expect LP budgets to remain flat or even to decrease, according to findings from the National Retail Federation’s 2017 National Retail Security Survey. This comes at a time when the number of in-store associates is dwindling, and their daily task lists are growing.
While situational awareness coupled with active response provide a proven product protection approach, achieving consistent and effective awareness and engagement among multitasking store personnel represents a formidable challenge. Experienced shoplifters and organized retail crime (ORC) teams seize this weakness every day by exploiting vulnerable in-store locations, out-of-sight of staff and of video surveillance. Worst yet, the mere presence of cameras does not deter these professionals for long as they quickly size up ineffective or nonexistent response in areas “ripe for the picking.”
Changing the LP Paradigm
Active deterrence—it’s the newest tool supporting retailers’ ongoing war on shrink. “Loss prevention professionals have been on defense for far too long,” said Joe Budano, Indyme CEO. “Our new active-deterrence solution lets LP go on offense to show thieves that they are watching, and they know what you’re doing, right there at the shelf level 24/7.”
Using non-obtrusive shelf and aisle sensors, active-deterrence solutions detect suspicious events. Once detected, a local deterrence device immediately makes the prospective thief aware that their activity has been detected and may simultaneously alert store personnel. The new generation of IoT sensors detects suspicious behaviors at the shelf or aisle level. These sensors are coupled to a range of active local deterrence devices that can be programmed with custom audio messages, flashing LED lights, or used to trigger public-view monitors (PVMs).
Simply put, Indyme’s Smart Sense® line of loss prevention products make potential thieves uncomfortable and uncertain. That uncertainty often translates into abandoning the activity and moving on-that’s the goal of Smart Sense.
Indyme understands the variance among retail operations and developed Smart Sense for adaptability. For example, a store’s staffing model is often a critical solution-design consideration that may drive a fully autonomous solution, one integrated with store communication devices or even event triggering the video management system (VMS) to promote apprehension, investigation, and prosecution activities.
A recent product entry, SmartDome™, intelligently detects prolonged presence in obscure store areas known for suspicious activities, such as tag and package stripping. Though it appears as a typical dome camera, SmartDome’s integral attention-getting, flashing, red lights and audio message activate upon detection of suspicious activity. Often used as an effective stand-alone deterrent, coupling SmartDome with Indyme’s real-time notification capabilities to the store PA system, two-way radios, or other communication devices empowers store associates with awareness to immediately engage shoppers. After all, nothing is a better deterrent than timely “customer service.”
Another product, Smart Sense Touch®, monitors merchandise interaction by detecting movement on shelves and other fixtures. Unusual or suspicious activity levels trigger local deterrence actions and can extend to staff notifications. Wireless Touch sensors, though small and quick to install, can detect activity across several shelves and diverse product categories, including cosmetics, laundry detergent, liquor, printer cartridges, face creams, baby formula, electronics, razor blades, fragrance, and many more.
With deep roots in customer engagement, Indyme has been innovating real-time retail communication solutions for over thirty years. Budano said, “We have seen great results from this new paradigm in loss prevention. Interactive and intelligent systems like Smart Sense represent the future of loss prevention in the never ending battle to secure stores, reduce shrink, and increase profitable sales.”
For more information on Indyme Solutions, visit indyme.com.