The continuous and safe management of a retail site requires the ongoing consideration of all employees. While the responsibility of the operation ultimately falls upon the shoulders of a manager, the assured risk management and avoidance requires the attention of a team. This means that, as the store runs, employees should keep a few basic checks in their minds at all times, so as to prevent harmful situations from occurring.
We have put together four essential routine checks that retailer employees should be continuously aware of while on-site and working. If these are not already covered in your risk assessment or introductory training, then be sure to amend your system and included them where necessary.
The security of a store’s stock is always at risk. By opening a store to the public, you are also risking the theft of stock. Certain measures can be taken to prevent such an event from occurring. CCTV cameras can be installed as well as alarms that can trigger if an item is taken through a gateway. These are commonly adopted for their effectiveness.
However, one of the most significant ways to deter a customer from stealing is with staff interaction. Studies have shown that greeting customers as well as interacting with them not only allows a staff member to spot any signs of potential theft but also reduces the likelihood of it taking place.
One of the most common causes of fires within retail establishments is due to electric faults, many of which occur due to overloaded or misused plugs. As staff are able to better oversee how plugs are being used and how the wires are kept, it is recommended that they are tasked to ensure risk is minimised. This included the use of chargers, such as those for phones.
Other fire-based responsibilities include checking fire escape routes are kept clear, as they can easily become obstructed by deliveries. If there is any doubt that your store may not be compliant with safety regulations, consider a fire door survey to eliminate concerns over ongoing safety.
Water damage can happen very gradually and identifying an issue early on is essential to preventing a larger, structural issue from taking place. There are various signs that a leak might be happening. Often, there is visual discolouration of a wall or sense of damp in the area.
If there are known areas within the site that house water pipes, such as near kitchens and toilets, it is ideal for each staff member to be vigilant when passing by to ensure leaks are spotted.
Theft is not the only risk when considering customers. Employees should also be aware, to the best of their ability, how customers are acting and interacting within the store. They may not always be aware of certain hazards, such as steps or fragile displays, and they should be given due support to avoid their potential harm when visiting and browsing your shop. Common injuries happen when reaching high displays and tripping over stairs and steps.