The restaurant industry is no stranger to employee theft, which can have a significant impact on a business’s bottom line. In fact, the National Restaurant Association estimates that employee theft accounts for 75% of all inventory shortages in the foodservice industry. With so much at stake, it’s essential for restaurant owners and managers to be aware of the types of employee theft and take steps to prevent it. Here are the five most common types of restaurant employee theft and some strategies for stopping them.
- Food and Inventory Theft
This is perhaps the most obvious type of employee theft in the restaurant industry. Food and inventory theft occur when employees take food, supplies, or other items from the restaurant without paying for them. This type of theft can be challenging to detect since employees can conceal items in their bags, pockets, or aprons. To combat food and inventory theft, restaurant owners and managers should implement strict inventory control procedures, conduct regular audits, and use surveillance cameras to monitor employee activity.
- Checkout Theft
Checkout theft occurs when employees undercharge customers or fail to ring up items and pocket the money. This type of theft can be difficult to detect since it doesn’t involve physical items leaving the restaurant. To prevent checkout theft, restaurant owners and managers should implement a point-of-sale system that tracks sales, conduct regular cash register audits, and train employees on the importance of honesty and integrity.
- Accounting Fraud
Accounting fraud occurs when employees manipulate financial records to steal money from the restaurant. This can include altering sales records, creating fake invoices, or stealing cash from the restaurant’s bank account. To prevent accounting fraud, restaurant owners and managers should have multiple employees involved in financial record-keeping, conduct regular audits of financial records, and limit access to the restaurant’s bank account to only a few trusted employees.
- Intellectual Property Theft
Intellectual property theft occurs when employees steal recipes, marketing plans, or other proprietary information from the restaurant. This type of theft can be particularly damaging since it can harm the restaurant’s reputation and competitiveness. To prevent intellectual property theft, restaurant owners and managers should have non-disclosure agreements in place for all employees, limit access to sensitive information, and train employees on the importance of respecting the restaurant’s intellectual property.
- Time Theft
Time theft occurs when employees are paid for time they did not work. This can include clocking in for a shift and then leaving the restaurant, taking long breaks, or exaggerating the amount of time worked. To prevent time theft, restaurant owners and managers should implement a time clock system that accurately tracks employee hours, conduct surprise time checks, and establish clear policies for breaks and overtime.
Employee theft can have a significant impact on a restaurant’s profitability and reputation. Utilize Gluon’s Petromo back office system to secure your store and restaurants today. By being aware of the five most common types of employee theft and implementing strategies to prevent them, restaurant owners and managers can protect their business and their customers. Through careful monitoring and a commitment to honesty and integrity, restaurant owners and managers can create a culture of accountability and transparency that will deter employee theft and ensure the long-term success of their business.