For retail, the holidays means an increase in inventory, customers, and employees. The months of November and December typically account for about 30 to 40% of most retailers annual sales. The spike in sales, the increase of traffic, and the risk of theft and workplace injuries also see a rise in numbers. Inexperienced employees are more at risk for accidents and injuries and nearly a third of inventory is lost due to internal theft alone. There are proper steps to take in order to help avoid these common problems.
1. Hire Seasonal Workers Before the Season Starts
Most retailers find that hiring seasonal workers well before the seasonal sales start, gives their new employees time to properly learn the ins and outs of company rules, procedures, and protocols. Hiring early also gives you enough time to properly background check your new employees and correctly evaluate their level of experience before assigning them a specific job duty.
2. Maintain a Safe Environment
Here are ways to help establish an environment that promotes safe working conditions during the holiday months.
- Be aware of what your decorations are made of and where you are putting them. Don’t put flammable material near lights or other heat sources, and make sure you aren’t blocking any exits or walkways.
- If you must extension cords, use them safely. Don’t use a cord that is too long, and if you do need a longer cord, keep it out of walkways and don’t link multiple cords together.
- Keep an eye on your inventory. If you over stock, you may run out of places to put things. Overcrowding shelves and your back of house can often be a fire hazard and very dangerous.
- Use battery operated candles. As much as you would like your store to smell like evergreen, or cinnamon pumpkin, the hazard of burning real candles just isn’t worth it. Battery operated candles help you achieve the same ambiance, with none of the hazard.
- Keep a workplace safety binder and make sure your employees know where to locate it, and abide by it.
3. Help Prevent Employee Theft
The increase of employees, often means an increase of internal theft. More merchandise and people present during the holiday months increases the importance to have steps in place to protect your inventory. Have cameras or supervisors visible on the sales floor and the stock room. Evaluate daily transactions, and validate voided and deleted sales to help mitigate theft. Also clearly communicate with your employees about company policies on theft and consistently enforce them when appropriate.
Consult a Business Security Expert
Having the proper retail security and fire prevention in place can make a big difference if something were to go wrong. Bay Alarm can help you prepare and be an asset to you this holiday season. Click here to get a free quote and find out how Bay Alarm can protect you and your business.