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Reduce employee theft

Most employees are trustworthy. These tips help catch those who aren't.

Employee dishonesty can account for many financial losses each year—including inventory theft.

To prevent that from happening, you should have a plan in place that protects your goods, supplies, and equipment. We’ve come up with these suggestions:

  • Make a complete physical inventory at least once a year by someone other than workers who maintain the records
  • Inventory your warehouse and list all its contents
  • Check a daily record of mail shipments against orders received
  • Verify returned shipments are actually delivered into inventory
  • Compare sales reports of returned goods with records of actual entries into stock
  • Make occasional spot checks of trash containers and open all crates, cases, and boxes to confirm the contents inside
  • Give clear written instructions on issuing, signing, or canceling warehouse receipts
  • Assign responsibility for checking incoming shipments to a third person other than:
    • ­the person actually receiving the goods
    • ­the person responsible for all parts and inventory

If this solution is not feasible due to limited resources, schedule more frequent physical inventories.

If you have a small staff, follow these steps:

  • Deposit cash receipts daily
  • Countersign checks
  • Reconcile monthly bank statements
  • Match cash receipts to bank deposits
  • Spot-check accounts
  • Approve returned sales and write-offs
  • Check warehouse shipping procedures, parts, and inventory controls

By taking these steps, you’ll have a more secure business and know whether any goods, supplies, or monies are missing—giving you more peace of mind.

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