Tips for keeping your employees safe while they handle cash

The world sometimes seems like it’s driven by money. If you have a business that handles lots of cash on a regular basis, for instance, a restaurant or retail store, you understand. But as great as money is, having cash on-hand creates risks for any business. Cash registers and cash drawers instantly make your business a target for theft and hold-ups. As a business owner, you want your employees to be safe. You don’t want them to get hurt because of the money they handle. We’ve got some tips that will help you establish policies for safe cash handling at your business and lower the risk of something bad happening.

1. Have ground rules for using the cash register.

All employees should be trained on the safe use of the cash register. Sure, you have insurance to protect your business, but they should know how to take every precaution when it comes to making change and selling your products. Your employees should…

  • Only open the register or drawer when they’re completing a transaction.
  • Close the drawer immediately after making change and filing the cash, even before packing up any of the customer’s purchases.
  • Know to notify a manager if there is lots of extra cash in the drawer so it can be emptied.
  • Count the drawer in a private, secure area.

2. Teach your employees to avoid conflict over change.

Squabbles over how much money was tendered and how much change was given happen. To help your employees avoid being chewed out by an irate customer (who may or may not be telling the truth) have them place the money given to them by the customer on the register and leave it there while they make the change. The instinct is to file the cash right away and then make change, but what if a customer claims that they gave your employee $30 instead of the $25 that the employee thinks they did? If they’d put the cash away, there would be no way to tell. By leaving the cash outside of the drawer and filing it after making change, the employee will know exactly how much money the customer gave them.

Teach your employees cash register safety skills.

3. Make sure your employees are locking the register and hiding the key.

The register should always be locked, and the key should be put in a safe place – and no, leaving it in the lock doesn’t count as a safe place. Make sure everyone’s clear on the policy for locking and opening the register.

4. Instruct your managers to vary the time of their bank drops.

If your employees have to pop over to the bank during the day to make a deposit, make sure that they know to switch up the time that they go and the route that they take. That way they don’t become a potential target. Restaurant owners can also use this strategy to lower the risk of robbery at their restaurant.

5. Use the buddy system for bank drops.

If possible, make it a policy for your employees to use the buddy system when they go to the bank. There’s power in numbers. Even having two people is better than having just one. This is an easy way to improve safety at any retail store.

You should also have the designated bank-dropper tell their co-workers that they’re leaving and what time they expect to return.

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6. Get creative with your money pouch.

When you send your employees to the bank, have them take the money in something that’s not recognizable. Have them use something that doesn’t scream “Hey, look, I’m a large amount of money!” Make sure your employees aren’t unintentionally advertising the fact that they’re transporting cash.

7. Make sure your employees choose a well-traveled route.

The path that the employee takes to get to the bank should be populated and well-lit. Also, if they have any other stops to make while they’re running errands, make sure that they go straight to the bank first. They need to deposit the money ASAP – the less time with a large wad of cash in-hand the better.

Establish safety protocols for making cash drops at the bank.

8. Train your employees on what to do if there’s a hold-up.

Your employees need to be prepared for what to do if there’s ever an armed robbery or other violent situation in your place of business. Even if you’re in a safe area with low crime rates, you need to go over what the protocol is and teach your employees how to handle the situation. All of your employees should be clear that no amount of money is worth their life.

Your employees should know to…

  • Try to stay calm.
  • Obey the robber’s demands.
  • Try to take note of the robber’s appearance (to tell the police later).
  • Never try to halt the robbery or physically stop them.

Your employees should also know how to report or log threats of violence and how to contact and interact with law enforcement. You should also have a violence prevention program for your business.

9. Have lock-up procedures.

Make sure to staff plenty of employees at closing and opening. There should be a lock-up protocol designed to keep employees safe, as closing and opening are vulnerable times for businesses.

10. Keep the back door locked at all times.

Your employees should know that the back door to your facility needs to be locked at all times to prevent someone from sneaking in.

11. Have security measures in place.

You can have a video surveillance system, an alarm system, and door detectors installed to keep your workers safe. You should also make it a point to light any areas of your premises that are dark, including the exterior of your business. There are many types of theft and crime that your business faces, and improving security lowers your risk.

12. Have a sign that declares that you have limited cash on-hand.

This deters theft and robbery. It’s a simple way to put off potential robbers and thieves. Why would they go through the trouble of robbing you for a small sum of money?

Keep limited amounts of cash on-hand.

By taking some simple steps to make your workplace safer for those who deal with cash, you can significantly reduce your chances of theft and danger. Put some policies in place to keep your employees safe.

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Want to get some insurance for your business? Great! We can help you identify the risks that your business faces, and from there we can get you some free quotes on your business insurance. To get started, all you have to do is fill out our online quote form or give us a call today. Our team of agents is ready to assist you.