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Community-based independent JONS Marketplace has reduced its shrink as a percentage of sales to an all-time low after deploying a point-of-sale video-auditing solution.
The Los Angeles-based 14-store chain has installed the Hawkeye solution from Camden, N.J.-based Agilence, and attributes a significant part of the shrink reduction to that system. The patented item-level synchronization software pulls data directly from the point-of-sale system and marries it with video in real time. The data for each item scan and key punch is linked to its associated video image, enabling JONS to instantly view the data and video of cashier activity for each item on a single screen, and to quickly and accurately identify all POS losses — operational and systemic issues and fraud — that are directly affecting profitability.
“In addition to being a highly effective loss prevention tool, we found Agilence to be an excellent training tool,” said Manuel Sauceda, director of IT at JONS. “Agilence identified several costly operational issues, such as inadvertent employee errors. We were then able to use the software’s video to show cashiers the correct and incorrect way to handle such activities as scanning items and administering credit card transactions.”
For instance, JONS found that many employees across the chain were improperly scanning manufacturer buy-one-get-one (BOGO) promotions. This issue caused losses each time the scanning error occurred. By identifying this issue early on, JONS was able to retrain employees before the error caused considerable shrink.
Another capability that JONS has found useful is the immediate availability of data provided by the system. Agilence provides data and corresponding video for each item scanned within a transaction in near real time. Just minutes after a transaction is completed, JONS can analyze a cashier’s actions to identify any operational issues or fraudulent behavior, allowing him or her to address issues immediately — before they cause substantial shrink.
As an example of this, within an hour after opening their stores and beginning a new promotion, JONS analysts realized that an employee was giving each customer $2 off their purchases rather than $1, the result of the promotion not being properly established in the POS system. Thirty minutes later, the grocer had fixed a widespread issue that would have been extremely costly.
“In addition to helping us identify operational issues and fraud, Agilence has proved to be a valuable training tool that we can use to prevent future losses from ever occurring,” added Sauceda. “Agilence has been a big part of the success we have had in reducing point-of-sale losses.”