Consignment Sale Security

It is quite unfortunate, but it is critical that you have a comprehensive security plan for your consignment sale.

It is very easy to think the best about people, but the difficult facts are that there are people out there who will steal from you if you don't stop them.

A simple, effective security plan can mitigate most security exposures while causing as little of inconvenience as possible.

Cash Security

The most important aspect of your security plan will be to secure the cash boxes. A single swipe of a cash box can make the difference between a successful sale, and actually losing money after your consignment sale.

Therefore, it is of vital importants to physically secure all of the cash boxes. Each cashier should be instructed that they are responsible for their cash box while they are working that cashier station. In addition, there should be a cashier organizer who keeps a secondary eye on all of the cash boxes during the sale.

It is also important to have a plan for the security of the cash you bring to the sale to fill the cash boxes initially, and equally important to have a plan to deal with the increased cash in the boxes at the end of each day, or even throughout the day. The end of a consignment sale can become hectic very quickly, so you should assign a trustworthy person to have nothing else to do but to manage the cash at the end of the day, and direct this person to decline any and all requests for help until this task is complete.

Merchandise Security

Merchandise security refers to ensuring that the only way your consignor's items leave your sale is after they have been paid for, and that the correct price was paid.

Your main exposure in this area is the entrances and exits for your sale location. You may want to plan on tight control of how buyers will enter and exit your consignment sale, while at the same time ensuring that you are not blocking emergency exits should they become necessary.

Some consignment sales will print a receipt for each purchase and have some security helpers at the exits to perform a quick check of all items leaving the sale.

So, consider if your POS system allows for a receipt to be printed, and in what order the items are listed. Most expensive should be listed first so they are easily identified. You don't want to have anything stolen (or accidentally missed at checkout), but it is always better to have lost a couple of one- and two-dollar items than something that is much more expensive.

"Under Cover" Security Presence

Beyond having unpaid merchandise being taken from your consignment sale, you can eliminate some opportunities by simply having several people assigned to security shifts under the guise of being "floor helpers."

These people can help shoppers if they have any questions, but normally there are few. The main job is to, number one, just be there (which will deter most theft) and, number two, to keep a watchful eye out for possible theft, alerting the security checkers at the exits to be extra thorough, if warranted.

Items which are valuable to children are prime targets for theft, especially those which have detachable accessories. Security should make an extra effort to ensure that even partial thefts do not occur.