How to Protect Your Profits
(When your employees steal)

Employee theft is such a major problem that it is a leading cause of restaurant failure. There are several reasons as to why the restaurant industry is susceptible to loss from employee theft.

They are:

  • There are several ways employees can combine house receipts with tips.
  • High employee turnover.
  • Access to cash.
  • Food and liquor are highly desirable items.

In order to combat the problem of the theft, you must learn to recognize the symptoms.

Some of those symptoms may be:

1. Become familiar with the warning signs of substance abuse. In most instances an employee will need the extra money to finance a habit.

2. Refuses to take a vacation. Employees who refuse to go on vacation may be afraid that their substitute will discover their dishonesty.

3. Condoning dishonesty in others. Employees who steal tend to have a different belief system when it comes to theft. Rather than believing theft is wrong, they may condone the acts of dishonest employees as, "Itís no big deal. It was only a few bucks."

4. A change in behavior. Employees who suddenly exhibit an unexpected change in their behavior should be a warning sign to management. Watch for sudden mood swings, nervousness, hostility, and other emotional changes.

5. Over protection of work records or files. Employees who are reluctant to give up custody of records or files may be keeping incriminating facts and documents close to them.

6. Violating the work rules. Employees who rebel against company policies and procedures should be watched.

Additionally, employee embezzlement can put you out of business. Employee theft is far worse than all the theft committed by your customers. You need to take the right steps to protect your cash and checks.

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