The first thing that hits a person's mind when they look to buy anything like new car, couch, electrical appliance, house, etc, is Internet, the most known name today. Internet has become the best marketing tool, bridging the distance gap. Whether I live in India or any other country, I can get access to the information of different items being sold all over the world. Earlier, a major junk of people waited for Sunday classified to know the availability of the things they are looking to buy. But with the revolution in technology, the free online classifieds are now available over the internet and can be accessed at anytime of the day or week.
FiWiClassifieds is one such efficient marketing tool, which allows posting of different advertisements and also viewing of classifieds. These free online classifieds are segregated on the basis of many things, like Electronics and Technology, Real Estate, Jobs, etc and have reduced the advertising cost to a great extent. By registering with these sites, even if I want to list a million dollar car for sale on free online classifieds, I can do it free of cost. The service helps the merchant increase its client base and boost profits at absolutely zero cost. The site also offers sharing of the ads on advert social networking sites, like facebook, twitter, myspace, etc. Hence providing a much wider platform. So, now I needed not browse through each column or hunt the for the regional newpaper, just a click and information will be there before me.
One of the significant aspects that is haunting many retailers the world over is security related to the merchandise, inventory and the capital assets of the store. In order to address the security concerns firms are making better use of personal security deinstallieren in order to focus on building a better channel that can take care of the security needs of the firm. Retail loss can be mainly due to ineffective control systems that are set in place to monitor security and also instances of thefts by employees or customers.
With the help of loss prevention manager, the retail outlet can make greater strides towards maintaining safe and secure merchandise in the store. Loss prevention training imparted to the security personnel can be especially fruitful in terms of better results and less shrinkage which is a result of thefts and ineffective controls.
Personal security deinstallieren tools such as closed circuit television sets, metal detectors, infrared identifiers, creating a visible store layout and many other secretive devices can help in monitoring the activities in a better way.
In order to prevent retail loss, loss prevention firms also impart training to manage the inventory levels in a better way and also implement strategies to avoid any instances of check kiting, theft and many more security glitches.
Deploying the security personnel at crucial junctures will benefit the firm in tackling security lapses. Personal security deinstallieren can effectively help the management to oversee any prospective threat in terms of security needs for the company. For smooth back end and front end operations and realizing better financial gains through trade can be made possible by taking the services of a better security service. A loss prevention manager can easily work up new strategies to manage security in a better way.
To organize a meeting room, first thing you must keep in mind, is that, what is the type of meeting. Meeting can be of different types;
- A school may organize, Parent teachers meeting
- Corporate or business meeting
- Press meeting
- Executives meeting
- Coffee meet and etc
Based on the nature of meeting you will have to select the place. Also keep in mind that the size of the meeting plays a pivotal role in meeting room selection. The venue you will choose for 30 people will be different from the one needed for 10 people or less.
Next will be your requirement list. For e.g. if you are planning a corporate meeting, you must have the following;
- LCD projector
- White board marker
- Wi Fi connection
- Connecting wire
- Pen and writing pad
In the case of parent teacher meeting you will not require all these since there will be no presentation or slide show. Once a table chair set up for two to four would be perfect.
Apart from the set up arrangement, you must plan out the meeting properly. Decide on who all will speak and what all will be discussed. The flow of the meeting and how to go about it are important factors of any meeting.
While you are hunting for a meeting room, you must keep in mind the budget allotted by the office. Select a good sized meeting room, with all necessary sound insulation and setting. It may be in a corporate hotel banquet or in any club. Here along with the perfect set up you will get food and beverage served properly. If you hire a room in these F&B outlets you will just have to select the menu and then leave everything on them. You are free from food arrangements or any associated tension. You will be able to attend the meeting freely.
Retail stores face a threat from both their internal as well as external customers. And hence it becomes very important to keep a proper check on Internal Fraud that is done by the employees themselves. There are many companies that offer the “Theft and Fraud Control Services” which involves complete investigation that is accompanies by an effective improvement or action plan. Although there is a minority of the internal staff that participates in Internal Fraud, the overall loss that the retails stores might encounter can be high. These investigation services are definitely time consuming; however, the investigators would suggest the retail stores to finish it at the earliest.
The services that are offered by the Internal Fraud team are – a complete investigation service, physical security reviews, compliance audits on security equipment, creating awareness on retail security, implementation and analysis support for Data Mining. This is the best method of tracking retail fraud. The loss prevention agents would be able to handle enormous data available with the retailer. The information would be handled in the most quickest and efficient manner thus knowing the root cause of the problem. The retails store manager would get a better picture on how best the loss can be avoided.
Certain studies revealed that 70% of the retail loss happens due to internal fraud. These statistics are based on the real time instances in most of the retail stores. The theft can be committed by anyone including students, graduates, married people and many more. Internal employee fraud is growing every year and there seems to be an increasing demand for surveillance equipment to avoid fraud. There is no way the retail stores can decrease the inventory shrinkage but with the help of surveillance cameras the cost of security officers can also be avoided. The surveillance solutions create a much safer and cost-effective environment for the retail stores.
Concrete shrinkage in retail outlets is one of the leading causes to retail loss. While the majority of the shrinkage happens due to inefficient back end controls in the organization, there are quite a few other reasons which lead to shrinkage in the inventory levels and also the cash flows. Retail shrinkage or concrete shrinkage in retail can be largely linked with bad administrative policies of a retail outlet. Some of the areas that can impact the shrinkage levels in the organization are employee theft problems, inefficient monitoring of the inventory that are received by back end personnel, errors committed by cashiers and accountants and many more.
Asset protection trust of any organization can better understand the measures to implement to contain shrinkage in the stores. Right pricing for the merchandise can help in reducing the concrete shrinkage in terms of financial gains. The use of advanced security system can effectively handle the floor traffic and also identify the inventory levels in the organization.
Overseeing a perfect distribution system will ensure that the shrinkage of non perishable goods are contained effectively. Better ware house management methods will help in overseeing the retail loss in several areas of concern. With better loss prevention management methods, retailers can address several of the issues related to concrete shrinkage that can help in improving the profits for the organization.
With the above mentioned procedures, a loss prevention manger can effectively address various issues that lead to concrete shrinkage in retail outlets. With proper administrative policies and better focus on the controlling mechanism, the asset protection trust improves the overall credibility of the security system of the store. In order to sustain the hard times, retail firms need to identify the right loss prevention systems that can improve their conditions
Retail shrinkage is inevitable and every store keeper faces these kinds of challenges day in and day out. One of the best solutions to avoid retail loss is to invest in surveillance equipment. The first and foremost thing that any retailer should do is identify from where exactly the retail shrinkage is arising from. At least 70% of the losses occur due to theft, shoplifting and internal fraud or theft. The number is ever increasing irrespective of having proper controls in place. Retail loss can be avoided if the retailers think in terms of a shoplifter or a check kiter.
The loss could also have happened due to vendor fraud. This type of theft is known as the external theft. There is a huge impact on the shrinkage and sometimes the employees are also a part of the external theft. Nearly every organization faces these kinds of situations which cannot be controlled with simple checks in place. These organizations and retails stores hire the mystery shopping company so as to work on these errors or loss in inventory. The auditors or mystery shoppers conduct audits thus enabling the store keepers or owners to take proper precaution resulting in making better decisions.
The mystery shoppers conduct reasonable investigation, analyze the shoplifter’s apprehensions, and conduct audits for operational accountability, identifying front end controls and the like. There lies a great deal of responsibility on the onsite managers, business owners and corporate level managers. The environment is very dynamic especially in stores where there is an in and out delivery procedure. Retail loss prevention would follow a process of identifying vulnerabilities and setting up policies and procedures. Checkpoint systems can avoid the shrinkage to a great extent. Prevention consultants can also be approached for reducing the retail shrinkage thus protecting the store’s morale and improving the store’s performance.
Retail stores should be aware of the possible check kiting incidents that might happen. This is one of those illegal acts where individuals take advantage of the float and make use of the non-existent funds in their checking accounts or other bank accounts. This is also known as check fraud and is also considered to be a type of retail loss. The check kiter writes a check in the names of one or more retails stores or departmental stores. These are the stores that offer cash back in case their customers buy more than the expected limit of purchase.
Check kiting is very simple for individuals who continuously do it. The cash that they get from the retail stores as part of the promotional offer would be deposited into their checking account. This process is followed by these individuals until their account has got sufficient funds for the checks to be cleared. The checks that are written will take a day or two to be credited. And in the mean time the kiter gets a chance to fill up his account. This is a repetitive process until the legitimate funds are deposited into the kiter’s accounts.
Although check kiting is illegal in most countries, many individuals are smart enough to continue this activity. There have been several stringent laws that have been laid down to curb kiting. Passing bad checks in many States is considered to be misdemeanour. If the check kiting activity has been identified, the kiter has to pay the payee the entire amount due along with any kind of service fee or protest fee. Retail kiting is very common in the suburban places where multiple supermarket chains operate with the closest proximity. There are many instances where the check is also returned for a prompt cash refund and the same is deposited in the kiter’s bank. The retail stores have to exercise great vigilance in order to avoid check kiters.
Whenever the retail stores hire the mystery shopping companies, secret shoppers are identified and sent to the retail stores by these companies. These shoppers behave like normal customers in the store and act like one of them. The retails stores are not aware of when these Customer Service Audits take place. These shoppers are professionals and are trained personnel. They evaluate the retails stores using a preset evaluation form. The evaluation can be taken in any format through the phone, internet or by directly walking into the store. Once the inspection is done, a detailed report and a recommended action are prescribed for the improvement of the store.
The customer service audits by the mystery shopping companies are not only done to enhance the customer service aspect but also to prevent internal fraud. The employees are a part of this fraud and it is believed that more than 35% of retail loss also happens due to fraud. Dishonest staff should be immediately identified by putting some controls in place. Most common fraud is that of unlocking the store after the working hours and removing huge chunks of products that belong to the high value category. Some of the other frauds include accepting payments from the customers and voiding the transaction.
The mystery shopping companies hire efficient shoppers who exercise high marketing and social observational research. They use various social research techniques that are used in direct observation in a natural retail store setting. Observation of products, usage of patterns, problems, observing licenses and renewals, level of scrutiny at the time of package, time taken for a purchase decision and determining the shoppers status. Retail audits are conducted by these mystery shopping companies to ensure the quality of the stores does not fall down. There are other audits such as the inventory audits that are considered while determining the product acceptance.
Buyers today have innumerable options at their fingertips, which is why it’s a challenge for retailers to attract them to their stores. Besides the quality of products and convenience, shoppers also look for quality customer service. Mystery shopping as a marketing strategy to measure the quality of retail service has been prevalent for a long time now. Mystery Shopping Providers Association is the trade organization that strives to achieve better service quality.
Retailers have to often come up with new strategies to cater to the dynamic market of today. Mystery shopping helps them get valuable information about products and services provided by their Retail Employees.
Members of the Mystery Shopping Providers Association include some of the best marketing research agencies, merchandising companies, private investigation firms, training providers and mystery shopping companies.
Being a member of this extensive network of companies that try to achieve high quality service has many benefits:
- You save a lot of money spent on recruiting ads by posting opportunities on their forum.
- Your company will reach hundreds of prospective clients who look for these services.
- You can be a part of decision making groups and the process that can shape the future of the industry.
- You will be instantly notified of important issues and can exchange vital information amongst members.
- It gives your brand credibility and makes you a part of an elite group.
- Members’ list is often used as a distribution list by potential clients.
- You get access to crucial information about tax and other legal issues.
- You can educate your clients within the community and make them realize the advantages of teaming up with you.
Mystery Shopping Providers Association is a flag bearer for ethical standards for quality service. It’s good for the industry and good for your business too.
Be it departmental stores, hotels, restaurants, gas stations, health clubs, retail outlets, movie theatres, fast food chains, car dealership or apartments, the Mystery shopping company provides services that evaluate the performance of all the industry specific products and services as mentioned above. Mystery shoppers pose like the normal customers who perform the regular tasks like any other customers. They purchase products, ask questions, register complaints and behave like a typical in-store customer. These experiences by the mystery shoppers are shared with the retails store owners, hotels or other companies thus giving them feedback along with detailed reports.
The mystery shopping company provides the mystery shopping services based on a survey model. The survey model might differ from an industry to industry. However, the end result is the same. The model is based upon the improvement factors that the client wants to incorporate. The mystery shoppers are given some information points on which they have to evaluate the store, restaurant or any other service provider. Basic details like the number of employees who attend to the shopper while he or she enters, the time taken to greet the mystery shopper, the availability of the name details of the employees, whether the employees are courteous enough and the like.
There are many mystery shopping companies that provide accurate feedback for the betterment of the stores. The shoppers are given specific instructions and procedures to participate in a typical transaction. During this process these mystery shoppers would test the knowledge and the employees’ service skills. They are evaluated in the most stringent and specific manner as mentioned in the Information Points evaluation sheet. A mystery shopping company can also hire licensed mystery shoppers or private investigators to perform certain tasks such as taking photographs or measurements, returning the purchases, counting the products, people who visited the store and the like. This company would then furnish a detailed, qualitative and a quantitative statistical analysis report to the clients.