The Keyholding Company

Managing out-of-hours risk: how retailers can take control of what’s happening on their estate

Having mobilised mobile security solutions for over 6,000 properties, we know that wrestling control of a large and dispersed portfolio is far from easy. For retailers managing tens or hundreds of sites, one of the biggest security challenges is understanding what is happening out-of-hours. 

Whilst most retailers have a great understanding of their security during daytime trading, out-of-hours risk can prove much harder to keep an eye on. The threat of fires, floods or break-ins are just as relevant outside of trading hours, yet many businesses struggle to find an affordable way of mitigating or understanding this risk fully. 

That said, even with the best precautions and deterrents, out-of-hours incidents will occur. However, with a clear picture of what is happening in real-time, proactive steps can be taken to reduce risk even further so you get peace of mind that all bases are covered when an incident arises.  

Using our experience working with national retailers from Next Plc and Smyth’s Toys to Chanel and Kurt Geiger, here are the key steps towards getting a clear understanding of out-of-hours risk. 

Loss prevention professionals often have responsibility for retail, online and distribution functions which can create round the clock problems. One way to avoid being “on-call” 24/7 is to ensure the risks to your closed premises are well taken care of. This can be achieved by checking that security data is up-to-date and in one place.

Colin Culleton, Founder/Director, Asset Protect Consulting

Use data to identify trends

With no staff on-site, the key to understanding out-of-hours risk is using data to identify patterns, establish trends and pinpoint problem areas.  

The security industry is already familiar with using data to understand key metrics like response times and supplier performance. The problem is that this data is often disconnected. Data points are housed in spreadsheets or monthly reports, each from a different supplier and presented differently. This makes it impossible to get a real-time picture of what is happening across an estate.  

The answer is to standardise the way data is collected and centralise it for complete visibility of the entire security provision.  

To understand out-of-hours risk specifically, two key data sources to bring under one roof are alarm data and mobile patrol data.

Alarm data

Heatmap of alarm data displaying day, time and location.

Alarm data provides information on where and when out-of-hours incidents are occurring. This is key for identifying patterns and understanding where to assign budget.

For example, if one site is experiencing repeated false alarm activations, it could mean the alarm is not being set correctly by the closing staff or cleaner. This issue is easily addressed through training and instantly cuts the cost of unnecessary alarm response.

Mobile patrol data

Mobile patrols are a great alternative to more expensive solutions like remote video monitoring and can provide additional value in the process.  

Mobile patrol data provides a deeper understanding of what is happening whilst stores are empty. As well as checking for signs of break-in, patrol officers can also complete facilities management tasks and highlight site issues that could pose a security threat if left unattended. 

For example, they may identify that a window is repeatedly being left open during lock-up, increasing the risk of theft. Similarly, they may highlight bathroom leaks or missing fire extinguishers more quickly than staff, making it easier for security teams to address these problems rapidly. 

Invest in detailed real-time reporting

Real-time incident reports with photographic proof-of-presence,
instantly accessible through our Smart Security Platform.

Monthly reports and sets of disconnected spreadsheets cannot deliver insights or pinpoint problem areas in real-time. The answer is to centralise security data into an analytics platform that does the hard work for you.

Our Smart Security Platform has been built to deliver data-driven insight and help businesses manage their security provision in real-time. The platform features:

In-built reporting – for instant access to job reports instead of relying on weekly or monthly updates 

Photographic proof-of-presence – providing clear evidence that a patrol officer has attended the site and checked each point of interest 

A comprehensive analytics suite – making it easy to identify repeat offender sites, conduct root cause analysis and review an entire estate’s security provision at a glance 

Take control of what’s happening out-of-hours

The reliability of third-party keyholders is very well established but the ability to link alarm data, premises locking and unlocking, and mobile patrol data via one platform can provide extra peace of mind surrounding out-of-hours risk.

Colin Culleton, Founder/Director, Asset Protect Consulting

We are the UK’s leading tech-enabled mobile security specialists and provide security services for hundreds of retailers across the country. We understand that with such clear visibility of risk throughout daytime trading, it can be uncomfortable having less clarity out-of-hours.  

Through our Smart Security Platform and customisable mobile patrols, retailers can centralise their security management and data collection, delivering the real-time out-of-hours visibility needed to take control and manage risk.  

Additionally, via our nationwide service partner network, clients can manage their entire security provision through a single point of contact, improving data consistency and streamlining security management.  

We are also members of the National Business Crime Solution (NBCS) and utilise API integrations to get a clearer picture of national and localised retail crime data, helping our clients understand their risk profile from within the Smart Security Platform. 

For a personalised quote, additional information about our services or examples of our work with existing clients, please don’t hesitate to get in touch

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We can help

Please get in touch to discuss how we can use our market-leading technology to keep your estate safe and secure.

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