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Implementing targeted theft-deterrent strategies depends on consistent record-keeping, organization, and pattern recognition. A data-driven incident management process is the only way to keep pace with an extremely adaptable foe.
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As the industry transitions from bricks and mortar to “bricks and clicks,” the capabilities of existing systems are being stretched thin, and many retailers have not fully integrated the new technology required to manage loss and reduce shrinkage effectively in an omni-channel world.
One piece of good news for California prosecutors is AB1065, a bill that makes it easier to tackle organized retail crime (ORC). As of July 2018, the bill has moved through the legislature but needs a final push in the state senate to make it to the governor's desk.
A more effective way to attack this type of theft is to bring together retailers and law enforcement resources in order to share trends and case details.
Here’s how one shoplifter assesses risk. “First things first—you want to know if they got what you want. The second factor is the risk involvement. The risk involvement will be security times cameras times employees times space times [other] customers."
To the average consumer, a loss prevention manager might once have been perceived as a “security guard”: a reactionary presence in a retail establishment whose primary responsibility is to apprehend shoplifters.
Retailers often ask, “Why should I care so much about preventing thefts when I don’t own the merchandise until you deliver it?” The answer is because you, the retailer, stand to lose the most.
Organized retail crime is not a new challenge, but one that may have been referred to by different names over the course of retail history.
At a time when store margins are under intense competitive pressure, retail shrink can make or break a retailer's bottom line. But retail shrink numbers are vulnerable to blind spots and imprecise metrics.