Sadly, no business is immune from employee theft. In fact, studies show 75% of employees report having stolen from an employer at least once in their careers. Managers, and those in the highest positions of trust, are usually the employees who commit the largest cases of fraud.
The solutions for preventing asset loss are varied depending on your industry and workforce. However, having checks and balance systems in place is one of the best ways to be proactive in reducing theft on all levels. To truly make an impact, however; the changes can’t just be in one area. Consider these six ways employee theft is hurting your business and examine your practices to discover ways to nip them.
Employee theft and asset loss is reported to cost businesses nearly $50 billion dollars each year. Common reasons for this are: lack of consequences, the belief by employees that the employer can cover the loss (makes enough profit, has insurance, writes off the loss, etc.), the impression of poor treatment, and lack of accountability for loss (no checks and balances in place).
Solution: Consider systems such as asset management lockers, enforced loss policies, and open communication to help support disgruntled employees while also holding them objectively accountable for theft or loss.
Productivity loss with asset loss
When a laptop, phone, or other device is lost or stolen, productivity halts for the time it takes to replace the asset. Additional expense may be incurred to install required applications/programs or set up security features. In the case of significant loss or known theft, police reports may need to be completed, further adding to the time away from priority tasks.
Solution: Keeping backup assets isn’t always a viable option, and they too must be kept safe. Have a process in place for fast action when a device or other assets are stolen or otherwise go missing, especially if they contain sensitive information.
Data breach and compliance issues
If the device contains confidential information, loss of the asset could quickly become a compliance issue resulting in fines and penalties from governing agencies. For example, if a laptop with client files were to be lost, you may be facing significant HIPAA fines.
Solution: Security measures must be in place to protect sensitive data and access to the data by the wrong people, and/or at the wrong time. Protect devices during down-time by not allowing them to go home with employees.
When the matter of theft is evidence, including seized goods, the consequences of the loss can affect more than just the employee, they can stop justice from being done. If a weapon is stolen or lost and later used in a crime, the situation can compound quickly with significant repercussions.
Solution: Weapons, chemicals, and evidence should be properly secured in asset management lockers designed for such to ensure safely and appropriate access, including an audit trail.
Theft of ideas
Intellectual property, prototypes, and even customer lists if stolen are hard to recapture. Once proprietary information is leaked, the negative impact on your business is hard to quantify, but is no less significant.
Solution: Keep prototypes secure with limited access and limit access to both digital and tangible products that contain proprietary information. Maintain good records to determine access and hold employees accountable to a culture of honesty and integrity.
One of the most common and easily overlooked thefts, is that of timeclock padding. Not only are employees likely to steal as they leave premises or outside work hours, they may take advantage of poor time-keeping procedures.
Solution: Watch for patterns of abuse and hold employees accountable. Create systems that deny access to assets outside of the person’s normal work hours.
Overall, security lockers are likely to grow in importance and value while businesses look to reduce employee asset loss and theft. Customizable in size, features and capabilities, security lockers can create the records (audit trail), accountability, and processes needed to reduce or eliminate tangible loss.
Debourgh All-American Lockers wants you to feel smart about your lockers. Now you can be the locker expert for athletic lockers, employee lockers, or smart asset control. It really is that easy. Start a conversation with us now by using the button below!