A lot of businesses are shut down right now and suddenly there are many individuals who find themselves out of work. Premises’ that are typically bustling with business and commerce are at a standstill sitting vacant as we wait for this Coronavirus pandemic to pass.
I’m hoping this doesn’t become a trend but just this morning alone, I had two different retail clients call in to report claims burglary and theft overnight with the doors busted open as a point of entry. Luckily due to monitored alarm and surveillance cameras, the burglars didn’t seem to get away with much based on early indications.
This serves as a reminder to be vigilant with your business premises and your neighbors in the surrounding areas.
Here is a Burglary Prevention Checklist from The Hanover Insurance Group to help get your brain thinking about measures you can take to help prevent burglary and theft at your place of business. We have enough to deal with right now, so let’s try to eliminate additional perils like this if at all possible.
I hope you’ll catch my radio interview hosted by Candy Messer of Affordable Bookkeeping & Payroll. We discuss all things Business Insurance and Risk Management. From General Liability for a home based business to Cyber Liability and Employment Practices Liability for small to middle market companies. You can catch our interview HERE. Also, link included below.
Topics include: General Liability Insurance, Errors & Omissions Insurance, Cyber Liability Insurance, Businssowners Insurance policies, Employment Practices Liability, Workers Compensation, Risk Management.
Accountants, CPA’s, Bookkeepers, Tax Preparers, and other financial services professionals work with a lot of sensitive, personal financial information which can expose them to high levels of risk. And that’s in addition to the every day risks they face – like damage to their place of business or business-related records, etc.
The Hartford is a great insurance carrier for Accountants, CPA’s & Bookkeepers and other financial professionals. They offer a product which bundles General Liability, Professional Liability (Errors & Omissions), Data Breach, Property, and Business Income into a single package policy at a really reasonable price.
Whether you’re a sole practitioner, or partner at a large accounting firm, you should consider The Hartford for your business insurance if you don’t have a policy with them already.
Contact me if you would like to see what The Hartford can offer. I am an appointed broker who can help you out with a quote for this.
Almost one-third of small and midsize business owners have no business insurance whatsoever according to InsuranceBee.
When the company recently researched 1,000 U.S. business owners to find out how well-equipped they are to mitigate risk, it found that of the respondents without an insurance policy, 47% are sole proprietors and more than half have a gross revenue of less than $50,000 a year.
Meanwhile, 43% of sole practitioners do not consider themselves to be risk-takers. When asked why they have no insurance policy, responses included “I don’t need insurance because my business operates in an ethical manner,” and “I can take care of problems myself.”
Other than insurance, 27% of business owners claim to have put money aside to help mitigate risk, while 18% say they have contracts and procedures in place.
Source: InsuranceBee; iamagazine.com
As if the day to day challenges of running a restaurant aren’t enough. The fierce competition, marketing, keeping guests satisfied and coming back for more, getting those 5-star Yelp reviews. The list goes on and on. But what about your own staff stealing from you right under your nose? Employee theft is a big problem for restaurants. Annual costs associated with employee theft in the restaurant industry are estimated at $3 to $6 billion nationally!! Employee theft is a bad situation for any business, and unfortunately it’s a common one in the restaurant industry.
Restaurant employees may provide free food to their friends and family, or they may take restaurant items home or steal money and tips.
Here are some precautions to take to prevent employee theft at your restaurant:
- Have a Theft Policy and Make it Known: Make sure every employee knows how the company defines employee theft and the repercussions of any theft. Offer annual training on the subject and have employees sign a policy. Place posters and signs around the restaurant to keep the policy fresh in employees’ minds.
- Conduct Background Checks: Check the references of all hired employees. If the applicant is a high school student and has never had a job before, contact his/her guidance counselor or ask for the contact information from a babysitting or dog sitting job.
- Use Technology: Video surveillance cameras are an excellent way to catch potential thieves, but they can also be a positive for the restaurant by pointing out procedural problems or ensuring employees are being safe on the job. Also, using technology that limits the amount of employee cash handling can deter would-be thieves.
- Treat Employees with Respect: Employees who are treated fairly and with respect by their employers are less likely to steal from the company. The employees feel less justified in stealing from those who care about them and treat them with dignity.
- Conduct a Drawer Check: Make sure the money balances out at the end of each shift.
- Keep a Careful Inventory: After each shift, count the remaining items and compare them to the items sold, paying specific attention to the products you sell the most of. Make employees aware that you conduct these daily inventories to deter them from trying to steal anything in the first place.
- Keep Your Eyes on the Trash: Employees tend to steal things when they are taking out the trash. Use clear bags to reduce the likelihood that this will occur.
- Get to the Root of the Problem: If you suspect an employee of stealing, move him/her to another shift. If you recognize that you are now missing items from the new shift, approach the employee calmly and ask for an explanation.
- Protect Your Customers: A new way of stealing from customers is called credit-card skimming. Restaurant employees will swipe the customer’s card through an unauthorized magnetic card reader to obtain their account information. Then, the data is copied and used to make counterfeit cards. To prevent this from occurring in your establishment, monitor the register closely and only allow seasoned employees to handle customer money and credit cards.
Need help dealing with employee theft problems at your restaurant? Or, have other risk management issues you need guidance on? Contact me today to talk.
Focus on what you do best, providing the delicious food and ambiance that will keep your guests coming back posting those 5-star Yelp reviews. The money will follow and you deserve to have it in YOUR pocket.
California Senate Bill 198 requires all employers to establish, implement and maintain a written effective Injury and Illness Prevention Program. This program must include the following elements:
- Identify a person or persons with authority and responsibility for implementing the program.
- A system for ensuring that employees comply with safe and healthy work practices, including recognition of employees who follow safe and healthful practices, training and retraining, and disciplinary actions for unsafe actions.
- A system for communicating with employees on matters relating to occupational safety and health. It should include provisions for meetings, training programs, posting written communications, anonymous notification about hazards without reprisal, and labor/management safety and health committees.
- Procedures for identifying and evaluating workplace hazards, including scheduled periodic inspections to identify unsafe conditions and work practices and a system to correct them.
- Procedures for conducting accident investigations.
- Maintenance of records of safety inspections and safety and health training for each employee. These records must be kept for a minimum of one year.
An Injury and Illness Prevention Program development guideline is available from Cal OSHA which provides more detailed information on the elements of the IIPP which are required (See Links ):
If this feels way too overwhelming for you, let me know. Give me a call or send me an email and I can work with you on developing an Injury and Illness Prevention Program for your business.
Last night, just after 10pm, a driver suspected of DUI crashed into a client’s business. This is a physical therapy office. Video from the scene showed a black SUV completely inside the building after crashing through the building’s exterior wall (see attached pic). Luckily nobody was hurt and we have the insurance carrier handling the claim now. Property loss and Business Income/Interruption coverage in effect until business is up and running again. On the bright side, this all happened during off hours.