Business intelligence and the use of intelligence and investigation tools can be exploited and utilised for continuous improvement in loss prevention. Some leading UK retailers are now adopting an intelligence-led approach to this critical area of business as a nonconventional, alternative to reactive, uniformed decision making.
The key to successful implementation of this strategy is easily accessible, rich data that can be transformed into meaningful intelligence. In that way analysts and investigators are able to spot trends and patters relating to organised criminal activity in certain stores or in specific geographic locations.
Through analysis of data a company can identify brands being targeted by criminals which are high risk, high loss lines. This enables organisations to better deploy their resources and take other actions to improve protection these areas.
Thanks to this meaningful information in-store managers can recognise whether the lost items have been stolen or inaccurately delivered.
Non-theft aspect of loss prevention could also be addressed by improvement in logistics, which can increase the-store manager’s confidence in stock numbers accuracy. data can also be helpful in establishing a more informed action plan giving greater insight into which and how the goods are lost. Further enhancements include changes to the packaging of goods, improvement of the returns mechanism or changes to customer instructions that lead to damaged goods. Determined centrally loss prevention solutions could be fed out to the retailer’s stores so there is no wastage of resources.
A quote from the head of asset protection at B&Q says “In today’s shrinking market you either take more money, get better terms from suppliers, or you address your [stock loss] gremlins. You need to do the first two but for every pound saved on shrinkage it is a pound of profit.”