Logistics is the Backbone of the UK Economy
The Logistics and Distribution sectors are frequent targets for organised theft, due to the sheer volume of valuable stock held at their premises, coupled with the fact that warehouses are most often located on isolated and vulnerable industrial estates on the outskirts of towns and cities.
The more accurate your inventory data, the faster you’ll pick up on theft. Without regular stock takes, you may not even notice that inventory levels are shrinking suspiciously until months down the line - by which time you’ll be haemorrhaging cash.
It is very difficult to prove that someone is guilty of warehouse theft without catching the person red-handed. It’s much easier to put security measures in place which help you avoid theft altogether.
It might seem like a no-brainer, but doing a basic background check on criminal records will drastically decrease your chances of warehouse theft. Checking with previous employers to find out how long the person worked there and why they left. Trust your gut - if you’re not sure about someone’s credibility, don’t hire them.
Make sure all your staff are aware that you have a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to theft or fraud. Have them sign a code of conduct that clearly outlines the company procedures of non-compliance. Additionally, you can identify anonymous channels for staff to report any suspicious activity. If everyone knows that their colleagues are keeping an eye out, it will deter thieves due to a higher chance of being caught.
If you experience a theft, or series of thefts, take a look at your shift register to see who was on duty when the stock went missing. If you begin to notice a pattern between missing stock and certain staff members on duty, monitor their activity in the warehouse. If you notice any suspicious behaviour (such as consistently clocking in or out at odd times) then you may need to investigate further. This can be done in-line with the company policy education and process.
Keep your pick faces and inventory storage locations as far away from your dispatch and goods-in areas as possible. The only stock that should be near these areas are incoming and outgoing orders. Provide visiting truck drivers with a dedicated lounge area to wait while orders are being loaded or unloaded. Only staff should have access to your warehouse or distribution area.
Installing security systems like access control and CCTV cameras not only deter criminals but also provide evidence of the theft that is caught on camera. These cameras should be strategically placed in high-risk areas. You can also install security mirrors to maximise visibility and prevent blind spots in hard to reach corners of your warehouse.
Security personnel should be stationed at every entrance/exit to the building. Be sure to inspect any vehicles leaving your warehouse to check for any unauthorised stock leaving the premises.
2 Cargo Theft
There is a significant problem with the theft of cargo worldwide. The value of cargo theft for the European Union is estimated to be €8.2 billion annually, an average value of € 6.72 per trip. Gathering accurate numbers for cargo theft losses is difficult or impossible in many cases, due to limited reporting by the transport industry and the lack of a national law enforcement system requiring reporting and tracking uniformity. Despite these figures, cargo theft generally has a low priority status in most countries and is often perceived largely as the cost of doing business.
The greatest source of risk for businesses is trusted employees, being involved in approximately 60 percent of all losses. This is interesting when considering the fact that most countermeasures are implemented to reduce external theft.
The relationship between security and opportunity is the predominant understanding of security in different contexts. This depends on the premise that security only can deter or repel a motivated perpetrator from committing a crime by limiting the opportunities for a certain crime.
These opportunities can be reduced and focused opportunity reduction can produce wider declines in crime. It is the theory behind security.
Security means the interaction between physical obstructing artefacts (locks, fences, Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) etc.) and the intervention of humans, with the aim of reducing theft, sabotage and other types of illegal activity.
There are different preventive methods that can be used to reduce the risk of theft, but the primary method is to use physical security countermeasures correctly (fences, locks, seals, guards etc). The objectives for these types of countermeasures are to make the theft both harder and riskier to commit.
Trust is Important, but Security is Vital within the Supply Chain, Call Us Today.