You may have noticed a twinkling Christmas light around your office lately. The holiday season is upon us and all of the merriment and festivities are in full swing. However, hidden just below the surface are some of the lesser discussed effects of the holidays – more stress, less time and a lot of money being spent.
While it might not show, people feel the pressure. And it could affect your business. Employee theft, fraud and lower productivity levels reach alarming rates during the holiday season. Retail businesses report a 45% increase in employee theft during the holiday season and workplace fraud – regardless of your industry – increases 20% during this season according to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners.
As a small business owner myself, I know that the potential impact of an 20-45% increase in theft or fraud could dampen your holiday cheer. The good news is that there are steps you can take to not only protect your business but also ensure a fruitful and enjoyable holiday for you, your business and one of your greatest assets – your employees.
- New and Seasonal Employees – Train all employees, even if they are seasonal, as you would a new hire.
- Background Checks – Conduct background checks on all new employees and periodic checks on current employees. It can inform you of any new or recent litigation, arrests or other incidents that could be red flags.
- Policies – Periodically review and emphasize company policies.
- Inventory – Conduct inventory checks. They can alert you to suspicious changes and remember, it doesn’t just happen in retail, it can happen in manufacturing or even in your supply closet.
- Blind Spots – Do you know all of the blind spots in your security? Whether you answered yes or no to that, your customers and/or employees could also know about them.
- Company Atmosphere – Days off and an altered schedule are inevitable during the holidays but make sure this doesn’t translate to delays in accounting, operations, purchasing or customer service. All eyes are on you to set expectations and lead by example.
- Communication – Take a moment to check-in and talk to your employees. Understand their obligations and discuss plans to maintain productivity and coverage during this busy time. Recognize and share your appreciation of their talents and hard work. Not only does this help to build a solid foundation but also builds connection and loyalty between you and your employees.
Sounds like a lot to add to your holiday plate? Hawk Private Investigations can take away some of your holiday stress and provide solutions to give you the foresight and tools to be able to prevent problems before they happen.
Find out how your small business can benefit from Hawk PI’s services. Call us at (800) 499-HAWK.