Holiday Season 2016: Loss Prevention and GPS Asset Tracking
The holiday season creates a number of challenges for businesses in most industries, but for those in the retail industry, the happiest time of the year is one of the most difficult to manage. Frenzied shoppers, employees who need time off and the increased demand on all parts of the logistics process of delivering and selling products makes this time of year quite the challenge. In every stage of the game, the risk of theft of products is high. For those who work in the logistics and transportation end of things, loss prevention issues are huge during the holidays. Fleet management professionals need to understand how GPS tracking can help with loss prevention as they focus on the holidays and the increased demand of the coming season.
Why Theft Increases in the Holidays
Theft risk increases during the holidays for a number of reasons. First, criminals find the holidays to be the ideal time to take advantage of distracted employees because the busier people are, the less attention they pay to what is going on around them.
In addition, the holidays are a time when more and more people are buying big-ticket items, and those items must be shipped from the warehouse to the store or the customer. Thieves are experts at knowing when delivery vehicles are the most vulnerable, and will make a move during those times.
How to Use GPS Tracking to Reduce the Risk of Theft
Theft risk is a problem for all involved in a retail business, but for those in fleet management the main responsibility occurs when the products are in transit. It is during those vulnerable transit times when fleet managers must take measures to prevent theft.
Unfortunately, there are many times when products are in transit that they are vulnerable to thieves. When an employee is stopped for dinner or at a rest stop, leaving the trailer behind, it's easy for a grab-and-go theft to occur. Drivers themselves are sometimes tempted to assist thieves in snatching the cargo in return for a share of the profits from the grab. When a trailer is parked at its final destination or at a dock waiting to be unloaded or picked up, the merchandise is once again at risk. At each of these points, truck, trailer and asset tracking can help.
The Many Benefits of Holiday Fleet Management
GPS truck tracking can track delivery vehicles and ensure their whereabouts are always known. This can help limit instances of driver or other employee theft because the driver has accountability for his/her whereabouts. Also, if a truck with a trailer full of valuable goods is stolen while the driver is stopped for food or fuel, the GPS tracking technology gives local law enforcement professionals a clearer picture of where the vehicle may be, so they can track it down and reclaim the goods it contains.
That's just the one way fleet tracking can assist with loss prevention. It's also possible to use trackers for inventory itself. Placing a small GPS asset tracking device inside product containers, with valuable products or within the packaging of a high-ticket item can allow tracking and security during those times that the container is stored at a warehouse or in a store's parking lot, away from the truck and the vigilant driver. This can also assist stores that must utilize outside storage, helping to prevent theft from those storage units.
For shipping companies and fleet managers, trailer theft is another risk they must deal with. For this reason, shipping companies will often place GPS tracking systems directly within the trailer, not just in the cab of the trucks they use. Trailer tracking can help recover lost trailers if the entire container is stolen.
As you can see, your loss prevention plan could benefit greatly from the assistance of GPS fleet tracking. Whether you are operating a fleet of delivery trucks, are a retailer store that uses outside storage or are a shipping company managing the logistics of multiple deliveries, you need to focus on loss prevention — and GPS tracking systems are an important tool in this process. Learn more about using Track Your Truck's fleet tracking systems as part of your loss prevention goals this holiday season.
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