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Non-Emergency Enquiries: 101

Theft by Employees

Employee theft can include a variety of things including:

  • Theft of cash from a till.
  • Forgery of company cheques.
  • Theft of inventory items/equipment.
  • Employees granting a friend or other person a discount at the register or charging for fewer items than the amount purchased.
  • Theft of information.

You can reduce the risk of this happening by:

  • Always checking references - even for temporary employees.
  • Establish a clear policy on theft and security and give to all employees.
  • Keep cheque books locked up and restrict access to cash and cheque's.
  • Divide financial responsibilities among several members of staff.
  • Control cash flow and document accurately where money is spent.
  • Make regular deposits of cash in banks rather than allowing them to accumulate in cash tills.
  • Check all invoices to make sure they match what was delivered and to ensure vendors were paid.
  • Closely monitor high-value items like laptops and sat-navs by using a sign-in and sign-out system.
  • Remove the opportunity to steal - where possible have different people taking it in turns to carry out different functions and checking one another's work.
  • Refunds, voids or over-rings should only be authorised in the presence of the customer.
  • Check bins regularly and at random intervals.
  • If there are any anomalies with the cash at the end of the day then respond appropriately.
  • All employees should be allocated a secure place for their personal belongings within a staff-only area.
  • Two employees should be employed to be present at the opening and closing of the store.

If you suspect theft has taken place you should:

  • Make sure you have your facts straight - making a false allegation is very damaging to employer/employee relations throughout the business.
  • Contact police and discuss your concerns with them.
  • Make sure you follow the statutory disciplinary procedures fully or you could end up losing in any future industrial tribunal.