Sponsored by Loomis.
Having a good loss-prevention strategy is a crucial part of maintaining a restaurant’s financial security; however, that can be a challenge for many multi-unit brands running corporate locations. That’s why it was one of the first challenges Kevin Marin tackled in 2017 when he joined Global Franchise Group (GFG), which operates around 120 corporate Hot Dog on a Stick and Round Table Pizza stores.
“When I joined the company, there wasn’t a problem to solve with our corporate store processes, but we were thinking about how to continually improve the business,” says Marin, who serves as director of field support and oversees loss prevention. “We wanted to make overwhelming tasks our employees deal with more manageable, such as the cash management process.”
At the time, GFG employees would count out their drawers and deposits, which managers would check, and then they would fill out deposit bags and slips. Then, a supervisor would walk or drive the deposit to the bank. These higher-paid employees were spending 30 minutes to an hour of every shift outside the restaurant instead of focusing on the brand’s priorities.
“From a safety standpoint, carrying large amounts of cash to and from the bank also put our employees at risk,” Marin says. “Cameras don’t exist when the employee steps off the property, so we wanted to correct that.”
To do so, GFG turned to Loomis’s SafePoint Titan C safe and cash management program. Ideal for small- to mid-sized restaurants, this smart safe system automatically counts cash for employees, which saves valuable payroll hours each week.
“Issues with counting had been a huge pain point, and that’s why we had management double count deposits before we switched to Loomis,” Marin says. “That was one of the selling points of the Titan smart safe. It counts cash automatically with 100-percent accuracy, reducing errors, and each employee has their own PIN to make deposits, so we know who made each one.”
Marin says that the simplicity of the system was another important feature, because it required no real training for employees. “The Titan uses technology they already use in their personal lives and includes it in their work lives. This means they caught on quickly.”
Once deposited in the safe, GFG receives provisional credit from its banking partner the next business day, even though the money is still on the premises. That way, the company still gets credit for that money as if the brand were still doing daily bank deposits, but managers don’t have to leave the store. Instead, Loomis armored car service picks up the cash for them and delivers change orders.
Not only does this save on payroll and help managers spend their time in the store where they are needed most, but it’s safer for employees. Additionally, Marin says the financial benefits were almost immediate. “We reduced our mileage expenses as much as 86 percent,” he says. “And what our managers are able to do in the store when they can better leverage their time isn’t as measurable, but it’s incredibly important.”
The loss prevention team also no longer has to call stores to track down missing deposits from its corporate locations. The Loomis Direct online portal allows Marin to see real-time information about deposits, including the name of the employee making the deposit, the time of day, and what types of bills were deposited inside the safe. This allows Marin to follow up when a store isn’t following the brand’s policies or find out where money went missing in case of errors or theft.
“Time is really important as far as training or internal theft are concerned,” Marin says. “If someone does something wrong once and they aren’t coached or it isn’t addressed in a timely manner, that employee thinks that’s acceptable. In the case of theft, that person is more likely to make another poor decision.”
With near real time access to cash information, Marin and his team can work with area managers to resolve missing deposits and research shortages immediately and track down sources of cash loss.
“Previously, so many people were handling cash so that when it was missing or lost, there was less accountability,” Marin says. “Now with Loomis, employees know we have the insights to follow up, and they have a higher sense of responsibility because they are the only people that handle their cash and their till. This has created a higher sense of responsibility overall.”
By Peggy Carouthers