One of the unpleasant things we have to do at Tower Systems is provide expert witness evidence for police who have been brought in on our advice to deal with employee theft.
We usually get to see the problem when we’re sent a backup. Next we call the business owner with the ‘good’ news. Often there’s a time of denial. Other times they are relieved to finally know what the problem is with their business.
From the time of discovery to the first court appearance of the employee involved can vary from state to state. Usually, though, it’s a few months. In that time there’s more data analysis and statements to be prepared and certified. The whole process can take several days of our time.
The tragedy is the emotional damage the theft does to the business owner. They are usually gutted. In addition to the hefty financial cost. Often they don’t know what to do or how to react.
Our advice is to, once you are 100% certain, act swiftly and use the police. Teach the people a lesson and show the remaining employees that you’re prepared to be tough on theft.
Theft is on my mind because we’re finalizing another case this weekend. The business has been hit for just under $100,000 and the impact on them could well be terminal thanks to an uncaring back, uncaring landlord and some other challenges. In their case the warning signs were there for months and they ignored them. In that time a further $25,000 was stolen.
Theft kills businesses, especially small businesses. It’s a tragedy happening in small businesses right across the country and our lazy she’ll be right approach hides it from us for too long and too often.