Preparing your retail business for the Christmas season

Preparing your retail business for the Christmas season

With the Christmas season around the corner, staff are becoming even busier and work is starting to pile up! There is so much that needs to be completed before the holidays start! Where does all this work come from? Even though everyone is in a festive mood and looking forward to a well-earned break over Christmas, they still need to get their work finished in time for the holidays. Retail stores however, can be even harder pressed at this time of year! With no end in sight, it can become quite manic in the lead up to Christmas, causing small everyday tasks to be easily missed in the mad rush to get everything done.  

With the expectation of higher sales during the holiday season, retail stores have to deal with a constant supply of new inventory, hiring and training new staff, and a huge number of customers moving in and around your store. All of this increased activity however, can also increase your risks of theft and accidents, and these are the big items that you don’t want to overlook at this time of the year. 

The aim of this article is to remind you of three important steps that will reduce your risks of theft and accidents in the lead up to the holiday season. 

1. Reducing the risk of employee theft

One of the often overlooked strategies for reducing employee theft is to take your time when hiring casual staff over the Christmas period. This means starting the hiring process earlier in the year, so you have time to check references and perform background checks as well. Also consider buddying each new staff member with an experienced employee who can help train and evaluate these temporary workers. Installing cameras in the stock rooms and at the point of sale (POS) checkouts, as well as checking daily transactions, and voided or deleted sales, all help to reduce your risk of employee theft. 

Take home message: Remember to vet new employees carefully, and review all transactions and security tapes regularly.

2. Reducing the risk of customer theft

Hiring security staff is one option for the bigger retail stores, but smaller stores can still reduce customer theft by being diligent. Always keep your store tidy and uncluttered, be on the alert for shifty behaviour and loitering customers, install more mirrors, utilise electronic tagging for merchandise, and place easy to steal items close to the POS. 

Take home message: Remember to review your strategies for preventing customer theft before the season starts.

3. Reducing the risk of in-store accidents

In-store decorations can be accidents waiting to happen, so always choose your Christmas decorations wisely and don’t create any fire or trip hazards. Don’t overcrowd your store and stock room with too much inventory, particularly if it partly blocks the entry or exit to your store or increases the potential for customers and staff to trip and fall. 

Take home message: Remember to assess the risk of accidents in your store, taking into consideration the Christmas rush and decorations.

Remembering to vet new employees, increase your security measures and ensure that your store isn’t overcrowded, are three good strategies for reducing your risks over the Christmas season. The final step that you need to remember is to have the right type of insurance policies in place, before the season commences. To decide what type of insurance policies are suitable for your retail business, talk to an insurance specialist today.

General Advice Warning

The information provided is to be regarded as general advice. Whilst we may have collected risk information, your personal objectives, needs or financial situations were not taken into account when preparing this information. We recommend that you consider the suitability of this general advice, in respect of your objectives, financial situation and needs before acting on it. You should obtain and consider the relevant product disclosure statement before making any decision to purchase this financial product.

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