Restaurant security system in food service industry
RESTAURANT STAFF ISSUE
Owners of all kinds of human services and, especially, cash business, once in a while get to face the problem of trust and reliability in their staff. Most of us try to see the best in others, but when it comes to money and your income, maybe it is better to double check.
It especially applies to such employees like bartenders, waiters (some like to stock up their fridges right from yours), cashiers and others – those who routinely deal with your money or goods, which are hard to monitor and count (like food).
Some employers just pretend to keep their eyes shut on minor discrepancies as long as the dishonest restraurant staff do not overstep the limits, and the earnings still keep on a high enough level.
But luckily we live in the XXI century and have the technology at our service. Many business proprietors are already taking advantage of using it. And the first thing you can use is the security system. It gives you lots of tools and opportunities to manage your business, including but limited in food service industry, in a more effective ways and, of course, to minimize the loss and damage of the goods and equipment.
Imagine you work at the bar and normally could make some extra cash during each shift by dividing the amount of alcohol per drink and selling it twice. It’s just one of the tricks everybody knows about. But if you know there is a camera, or even two, watching your every move, would you take a risk? Well, you would think twice. Most will just focus on the good service and make more money from customers’ tips.
The same goes with waiters and kitchen staff. It is very unlikely someone would risk losing a job because of a solid piece of pork.
WHAT’S THE BEST YOU CAN DO?
But it is all psychology, what about the technical side of the matter? Most businessmen are quite far from all the technology aspects of the work and are good managers, not necessarily technicians. Consequently, the first thing to come to their mind would be to turn to a security agency. And here the first sign of unawareness comes up. Would you like to pay hundreds of dollars each month to the agency so that they keep an eye on your cash register? Or if easy video surveillance was easy enough to be done yourself, wouldn’t you prefer to save these funds?
In fact, restaurant surveillance in food service industry is so easy nowadays. If you choose the right software it will make a video surveillance system meet all your requirements and, what is more important, will allow you to easily maintain it without any special tuition. You would also have easy access to the cameras and their footage, wherever you are and whenever you want to. Also you will surely seek for the system and software to be clear and easy to adjust.
Xeoma was designed to meet all these criteria perfectly and, we believe, will make the whole process of setting the system up and using it after simple and fun.
WHERE TO START FROM
Determining how much security you actually need begins with evaluating the risks to which you are exposed. And it is preferable to start planning and designing your restaurant security system concurrently with designing the restaurant itself. It will help to make security cameras integrated to the restaurant interior and the whole environment organically.
Restaurants without the proper security system are several times more probable to be robbed than those with well thought-out security system and burglar alarm. What is also very important, well made restaurant security system in food service industry, along with video surveillance system, not only protects your business, but also your restaurant staff and customers.
At the planning stage you will want to make it clear, firstly, if you would like to focus on deterring restaurant staff and vendor theft or preventing the vandalism. In the first case you should opt for installing an up-to-date and reliable video surveillance, and for the latter case outdoor cameras will do great. Do install both if you want the total control. Think also of WHERE you will place the cameras, as their strategically positioning is the key to successful and effective video surveillance.
You are going to spend money on your restaurant security system, but you are not going to just waste it. Thoroughly planned security system, even though potentially difficult and time-consuming, can help ease your security concerns and provide a more productive operation.
WHAT DO YOU NEED?
Then it is time to allot the number and positioning of the cameras and various alarm and access systems. The design of your restaurant will affect the system’s ability to monitor the territory. Prevention of invasion of any kind is the main reason to install a security system. Design respects, such as the number of entrances and exits, daytime and nighttime visibility, restaurant staff and vendor access, glass windows, and even landscaping play a role in your security system.
Whether you are planning your restaurant security system at the construction stage or after all is done and you are ready to open, do review these aspects of your business to make a right decision on placing the security cameras and choosing the necessary features of the system.
- Location. Is it a free-standing building or strip center?
- Square footage of the restaurant.
- Amount of glass in building.
- Number of entrances or access points.
- Interior and exterior lighting.
- Number of cash register/check-out areas.
- Need for on-site safes for money or valuables.
- Video surveillance needs.
- Type of restaurant.
- Business hours.
- Opening and closing procedures.
- Facility access to third parties and restaurant staff (pest control, janitor, etc.).
- Staff turnover rate of those employees with access to building.
- Out-of-the-office or remote monitoring requirements.
- The type of building and the location of your restaurant are essential factors when understanding your security needs. High-crime areas are, surely, more susceptible to burglary and robbery attempts. Also, free-standing buildings may require more coverage than a lease space in a strip center. Some strip center locations require just the front and rear parts of the building to be protected against break-ins, whereas a free-standing building may be exposed on all sides. On this note, each entrance to your building, including doors, windows that open, and roof hatches, will require a door or window contact.
- The size of your restaurant matters. The larger the restaurant, the more there is to cover, requiring additional motion sensors or door and window contacts. The number of cameras will also depend on this factor, which will affect the price you will pay for the video surveillance software license. For instance, the price of Xeoma restaurant security system depends on the number of video sources you use and the number of servers.
- You will need more glass break protectors if there are lots of glass in your restaurant (windows, displays). On the other hand, glass provides better visibility that could be a strong deterrent to crime as well.
- Also affects the total need for the cameras and some systems like controlled access with keypads, magnetic card readers, and biometric devices (fingerprint ID) and etc.
- As well as the “glass factor” has a deterrent impact on a prospective criminal. Some special featured cameras may be required to execute night monitoring when it is too dark.
- It is quite clear here. The greater the number of cash handling areas, the greater the need for security devices such as panic buttons and video cameras.
- Drop safes for which on-site personnel don’t have access might be more preferred. The chances are better that a criminal will not risk if he is not sure you keep cash on location. So the less cash you have on-site, the less the temptation for the robbers.
- As mentioned above, you will need to know the total number of the cameras (as well as their types) to select and purchase the restaurant video security system. Having answered the above questions you will be able also to plan your surveillance system, setting the modules (like motion detection, scheduled recording, types of alarms and many more).
- High-volume bars or restaurants, such as casual-theme dinner houses, may be perceived by criminals as easy targets at closing time. Visibility to the outside is usually not as good as a fast-food restaurant with a drive-thru and plenty of windows. On the other hand, fast-food restaurants may be perceived to have more cash than a typical full-service restaurant that tends to take a greater number of credit card sales.
- Should there be any third parties companies having access to your restaurant, make sure to install controlled access with magnetic cards, mentioned earlier, or alarm system with a password. It is important to change password often enough as the staff turnover is a common feature of all service businesses. And, surely, you don’t want too many people to have an access to your business premises.
- The last point applies more to choosing video surveillance software. Most of such programs have the remote control option and usually you can not only connect from another computer but from your mobile device.
In the end, it is safe to say, smart and proper retaurant video security system will not only help you to manage your team and business better, but also to reduce many kinds of loss, and, consequently, to save money. Note, that in some countries (or states) it is even necessary to set video surveillance to get a license for your restaurant business in food service industry.
Contemporary video surveillance software comprise dozens of video analytics opportunities that help business operations – from emotions recognition, queue detection, safety gear or smoke and fire detection and many more.
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Updated 7 July, 2022