How Security Surveillance Deters Employee-Based Shrink

Many retail business owners don’t realize this, but the ways in which employee theft occurs often very closely resemble what we define as “shoplifting.” An employee can steal by concealing merchandise in a purse, pocket, or bag… just as a shoplifter can. Although retailers bestow more trust on to employees than they do the average customer, it doesn’t mean you can afford to overlook them as a threat to your business. Your employees have access to the cash register, food, merchandise, refunding capabilities and even checks.

Forbes reports that United States retailers are losing $60 billion a year to shrinkage. Retail Knowledge found that employee theft was the single biggest cause of loss to retailers. “Overall the biggest area of store loss remains employee theft…with 38% of respondents citing it as the number one area of store loss,” the report stated.

How Security Surveillance Deters Employee-Based Shrink

It can go way beyond petty larceny. In fact, according to, in some cases employee theft can sometimes be charged as embezzlement due to the trusted fiduciary status of the employee. While these are unfortunate things to be concerned about, these all lead to inventory shrinkage, and they need to be addressed.

Retail store employees enjoy plentiful opportunities to steal cash or merchandise. This is especially true with large retail stores. According to, what keeps most employees honest is the desire to be viewed as trustworthy in hopes of earning a raise or promotion. However, at a large retail chain, it’s harder to get noticed as an employee, and that’s often when people resort to stealing. Studies show that significantly less shrinkage occurs in stores with reduced employee turnover and fewer part-time workers.

However, for many retail business owners, high turnover rates and part-time workers are a necessity in order to remain competitive. So, what can retail business owners do to cut down on shrinkage? One clear solution = invest in a professionally installed Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) video surveillance security system. To put it simply, when retailers make sure to let employees know they’re installing a video surveillance system, it enables the deterrence of suspicious activity before it turns into something more. In many cases, after installation of a modern video surveillance system, dishonest employees who’ve been able to outsmart various existing security measures will simply quit. Also, proactively making sure employees are aware of surveillance will avoid any potential future “privacy violation” accusations.

With a professionally installed CCTV video surveillance system, a business owner can keep tabs on employees, and its perfectly within the guidelines of the law. With a system in place, a retail business owner can not only prevent internal theft by holding employees accountable, but you can catch also catch “slip-and-fall” insurance scams, enhance security and visual identification, detect and record exits, and protect and safeguard the business.

Off-site archiving of recorded video enhances on-site security by preventing local system tampering. If you’re worried about employee theft, (and by every measure, you should be) consider a professionally-installed CCTV surveillance system.

Contact us to learn more about retail security solutions.