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Theft Disciplining Policies and Procedures

There has been a great deal of theft of basic supplies lately. It is not valuable equipment going out the door, but just a steady stream of everyday items. We think that some of the employees are simply taking things home. What's the best way to get this to stop?

It is interesting that the theft of supplies is going on now, because this is not really supply theft season. That tends to occur at the end of the summer just before the school term starts.

One key step is for management to clearly and formally reemphasize company policy in this area, specifically indicating that the removal of supplies without permission is viewed as theft, and employees who engage in it will be subject to severe discipline including termination.

It is also important to clarify the company's expectations in this area because some employees believe that there is nothing wrong with taking a few supplies, and may even view this as a perk. If the company has a good number of disgruntled employees, it is important to note that research has found that they will be more likely to walk out with company property. This is their way of getting back at the company.

Encouraging all of the employees to be more vigilant can also help. And, the overall security systems and practices should be checked, as many companies are easy pickings for outsiders. In fact, perhaps this is the time for the insiders to look at an outside security company.

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