Restaurant staff working together

13 Tips to protect your restaurant from theft

27 November 2020

Even though many businesses are now processing more card payments than cash transactions, restaurants are the type of businesses that will still usually have large amounts of money on site.

Combined with late nights and possibly young, inexperienced staff, this makes restaurants attractive targets for thieves, who will try to steal cash, equipment and other assets.

Take a look at some of our tips on keeping your business safe from thefts.

1. Making eye contact

Making eye contact with customers is both welcoming, and also a way of telling a potential thief you’re alert and keeping an eye on them.

2. Challenging suspicious behaviour

If you notice someone acting suspiciously, you simply need to approach them and ask if they require any assistance. This will show that you are alert to anything out of the ordinary, whilst keeping up a friendly, customer-centric demeanour.

3. Encourage your staff to move around the premises

By having your staff move around regularly, it will deter thieves from making a move to steal something as it is more likely that a member of staff will notice something if they are moving around frequently.

4. Pay close attention to cash registers

Don’t let the cash register get too full. Take any cash to a safe, send a trusted employee to the bank or make the trip yourself to make sure there is as little cash on site as possible.

5. Keep unattended access points locked

Access points such as windows, doors or vents should be kept locked or secured at all times to prevent unwanted access.

6. Report suspicious behaviour

Staff should know who they need to report suspicious activity to if they spot it. This will usually be the shift manager for the evening.

7. Don’t chase a criminal

If you witness a theft, don’t chase after the criminal at this could lead to injury to you or a member of your staff.

Do not follow the intruder outside as this could escalate the situation to a dangerous level.

8. Staying calm

In the event of a robbery, try to remain calm, speak slowly and calmly and don’t make any sudden or unexpected movements.

9. Remember as much as possible

Try to remember as much as possible about the criminal. Any facial features, height, clothing, accents or anything that could help to identify them.

10. Call the police

Call the police as soon as it is safe to, and notify the manager, briefing them on what has happened.

11. Dealing with threats

If you are being threatened with physical harm, comply with all demands.

12. Reporting the crime

For any crime deemed serious enough contact the emergency services on 999 as soon as it is safe to do so giving as much detail as you’re able to assist with any enquiries and hopefully the arrest and detainment of the perpetrator.

13. Helpful numbers

Keep a list of helpful phone numbers near the front of house for your business. Include the contact details for your local police station should you need it as well as the number of your insurance provider for when you need to make a claim.

Source: Zywave Inc. - Restaurant Playing It Safe: Restaurant Crime

When you have put the time and hard work into building a business, you want to make sure that it is protected. Unfortunately, crime can affect your business, but with the right cover in place, you can protect the business you have built.

At Premierline, we have a wealth of experience in arranging insurance covers for businesses in the hospitality industry, so speak to one of our insurance professionals for a competitive, no obligation quote.

It is important to make sure that you have the right insurance in place to protect the business that you have built. Every business is different and has its own business insurance needs, which is why we work with some of the UK’s most well-known insurers to ensure that you are getting the right insurance cover for your business.
The information and tools contained in this guide are of a general informational nature and should not be relied upon as being suitable for any specific set of circumstances. We have used reasonable endeavours to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the contents but the information and tools do not constitute professional advice and must not be relied upon as such. To the extent permitted by law, we do not accept responsibility for any loss which may arise from reliance on the information or tools in our Insight Hub.