Employee theft is costing US businesses billions of dollars annually. Have you been negatively affected by this? Or are you too scared to calculate these costs?
You may think it’s futile to try and solve this problem but actually there’s a lot you can do. The basic premise is: Install some boundaries & ground rules. This foundation will empower you to manage the situation better. Having a system that runs smoothly in your company will allow you to easily see if something is out of place.
Want some more insight?
Let’s look at the common ways your employees can steal from you & how you can prevent it from happening.
- Taking Advantage of Work Property
Do your employees have access to company cars or petrol cards? If they do you’ll know what a headache it can be to monitor & track their every move. Businesses all over the world lose millions of dollars if not more from employees misusing company assets.
Why is this first on our list? Because misuse of company property can sometimes be seen as minor & business owners often only realize the implications when it’s too late. It’s better you start being proactive now.
There are different ways your employees could be costing you unnecessary money without you even noticing. Luckily there are solutions too:
- Company phones: Making private phone calls on company phones are one of the most common issues in the workplace. You might be lenient on your employees to make a quick two minute call but are you monitoring them often enough? How many private phone calls are they making? And ultimately how much is it costing you monthly? If you don’t want to refuse private calls make it clear in contracts that all employees should be making use of his or her own company phone as they’ll be responsible for private calls made. Let each employee receive a printout at the end of the month where they must allocate private calls made. The total amount will then be deducted from his or her salary. In the long run you’ll see the effect so putting this solution in place is worth the time and effort.
- Internet services: So you have open, limitless Wi-Fi and don’t understand what the fuss is about? It’s not costing you more to allow them access. But allowing your employees to browse freely on the internet can open opportunities for anyone to easily hack into your system. The best way to avoid this is to put encoding on your computers that’ll only allow your employees to do work related tasks on the internet.
- Only one print: It might seem like nothing major if an employee uses the company’s printer for personal use. The problem is when you combine all employees’ costs and this might add up to a considerable amount. Be consistent with rules & regulations from the smallest thing to the largest.
- Company vehicles: Don’t we all love the perks of having a company vehicle? Company cars are a great way to promote your business but if your employee takes the family on a trip with the car you might have a problem. Even if they pay for fuel themselves you’ll be left with a vehicle that’ll need to be serviced more often and quickly drops in value. Is there an easy solution? Installing tracking devices in your company’s vehicles will allow you to easily monitor your employees. Enable nifty features such as being alerted if the car leaves town. This might cost a few dollars but it can’t compare to the amount you’ll be saving in the end.
- Time Theft
Is buddy punching a problem in your company? You’re not alone. Time theft is the number one cause of money loss for companies all over the US. There are a few reasons why your employees get away with stealing your time & money:
- Time consuming: Checking up on your employees daily can be time consuming. Attendance registers often go unchecked.
- Buddy punching: Employees often cover for each other without realizing the implications involved. If you don’t have a proper system in place it can be hard to monitor whether an employee was at work or not.
- Disorganized: Manual clock in systems can become disorganized or damaged. What do you do when someone spills coffee all over the month’s clock in system? Papers can easily get lost so you’re left with inaccurate information.
Do you realize how many opportunities you’re giving workers to steal from you? Then start countering with technology. Investing in a good biometric clock in system such as https://advancesystemsinc.com will make your life easier & prevent time fraud entirely.
Embezzlement must be the hardest thing to deal with for business owners. The fact that it’s the people in your business you trust most that steal from you is a scary thought. There are a few ways you can prevent fraud:
- Recruitment: Who you recruit will ultimately determine your level of success and profit. Do proper background checks on future employees. Phone previous companies they’ve worked for so you can verify you’re employing trustworthy candidates.
- Security cameras: Install cameras in all the areas where you feel it’s necessary especially where cash is handled. The financial department should be the first place to get surveillance.
- Proper management: When last did you check your company’s finances? How often do you audit your cash procedures? No one likes to feel like a babysitter but some things can’t be left unchecked especially if there’s money involved.
Remind your staff that these techniques are there to protect both your assets and their reputations so no one can make faulty allegations.
Here’s the question: Do you trust all your employees enough to bet your future on it? Yes? So did many business owners in 2016. The total loss due to employee theft amounted to $1.13 million that year and numbers are always growing. This doesn’t mean you must turn into a micro-managing leader, but definitely a proactive one.