In the dictionary, the word shrink is defined as becoming or making smaller in size or amount. In retail environments, however, the term becomes much more sinister: inventory loss caused by damage, fraud, or theft. In 2016, theft and loss of inventory—not including shoplifting—was responsible for a $48.9 billion hit to the economy. Unfortunately, the problem shows no sign of slowing down. In fact, almost a quarter of survey respondents saw a shrinkage rate close to double that of the national average, and overall retail shrink continues to trend upward.

Solving Shrink Isn’t So Simple

Today’s retailers face many market challenges and pressures–shrink being one of them. Shrink does not only include loss of inventory – loss of cash also plays an important role in a store’s overall shrinkage rate. Often the result of theft – both from internal and external sources, and mismanaged accounts – shrink can be a threat to a retailer’s survival, and steps must be taken to continually reduce shrinkage rates in order to remain competitive.

Retailers fighting the cash shrinkage battle should consider adopting an automated cash management solution to help increase overall visibility, and promote accountability, to their cash business. A smart safe is a great place to start.

Smart Safes Enable Accountability and Reduce Risk

Smart safes enable retailers to minimize cash accounting errors by securely and accurately depositing the store’s cash, most typically at point of sale. Once the cash is deposited into the smart safe, access can be restricted to only those in a position of authority – which at many times is restricted to an armored car courier. Furthermore, each smart safe transaction requires user authentication, ensuring all transactions are traceable and auditable, greatly reducing the incidences of internal theft. Other solutions that can connect to a smart safe may also be considered, including those that offer a safe and convenient way to vend change whenever needed, as well as solutions that provide secure vaults that allow owners to securely store high value items at the end of the day, rather than leaving such items exposed in the store during non-operating hours.

Workplace Safety and Employee Productivity Go Hand in Hand

Robberies, even unarmed incidents, can be traumatic, often leading to downtime due to financial and emotional recovery efforts on behalf of stakeholders and workers alike. Not only do smart safes provide a secure storage mechanism for the retailer’s cash, they can also act as a robbery deterrent, discouraging thieves from committing the act in the first place.  Also, the intelligence built within a smart safe can facilitate communication with a store’s POS system – enabling alerts to occur when cash in the till needs to be deposited, reducing overall cash exposure for the store.

By leveraging smart safe technology, store employees can thrive in a much safer work environment, giving them the peace of mind needed to focus on what matters most – helping customers.

Supported by a team of experts dedicated to providing innovative cash security solutions, Tidel’s line of smart safe solutions helps retail environments become more secure for owners and employees. To learn more about Tidel’s solutions, visit tidel.com/smart-safes/ today!

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