Employee theft is a phenomenon where an employee is stealing or misusing the assets of his employer without permission. There are various ways through which employee theft is manifested. The assets that can be stolen include: Money, Time, Supplies (food, silverware etc.), Information, and Company property. This article, however, is focused on a particular form of employee theft that is common among salesmen. This is known as time theft. Salesmen generally are guilty of time theft on a daily basis. Some of them claim to meeting a client or trying to make a deal happen but in actuality they are either down at the pool, as I once did or playing golf as several of my colleagues did as well.
According to a survey, employee theft can exceed 10 minutes per day. For salesmen it can run into an hour or more per day. Company of different sizes experience this, but it is more common in bigger companies and also among successful salesmen. These salesmen can go out for a meeting with a client and stay longer than the expected time. They come in late for work sometimes, and other times they may be at the office but spend time on social media. This trend is making companies lose a lot of money
How much does time theft cost you?
If you pay your employee $16 per hour and that employee steals roughly 10 minutes in a day. This individual costs you a total of $650 in a year in time that he did not work. Just imagine if all your salesmen steal the same time, this can run into thousands of dollars. The cost of time theft among salesmen is very high, and this calls for attention.
How do you handle time theft?
Time theft as already stated can come in different forms. It may be that the salesmen on the non-reports to work late or is not focused at work. Also salesmen who are sent out to meet with clients may misuse their time and come back later than expected. So how can you handle this issue.
1) You need to define exactly what time is and referenced in your employee handbook. Make sure that your employees know what you consider to be time theft.
2) Implement an organized system of repeating and accountability. There are high-tech softwares that help you with time and attendance and this helps to track when employees come in and when they go out.
3) Use an internet security program that denies access to certain websites. This way, your employees will know that you are watching
4) For salesmen who work remotely, you can employ a software or web-based time clocks with GPS functionality. They log in on their smart phones or laptops and this helps you to know where they have been and for how long. Helps you to track their movement.
5) Make sure you discipline those who are caught in the act. This way other salesmen will know that you take the issue of time theft and misuse of resources seriously.
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