Attacks on retail workers in the UK are on the rise. Unfortunately, the problems of violence, threats and abuse are now commonplace, and it is estimated that the sector has over eight million crime-related incidents each year. Not only do these crimes cost retail businesses a lot of money, but they have a terrible impact on frontline staff who have to live with this growing threat on a daily basis.
In a bid to combat this problem, many large retailers are looking at new ways to help staff feel more valued and secure. Asda recently announced that it is utilising Body Worn Cameras to enhance in-store security, and more large retailers are in talks to follow suit.
Body Worn Cameras have been proven to help improve the safety of those in public facing roles, whilst producing compelling legal evidence when needed. BWC’s can provide two-fold protection to staff – firstly, members of the public naturally change and moderate their behaviour for the better when they realise they are being recorded, or might be recorded – but importantly those recordings can then be used, when needed, to provide evidential quality footage to secure convictions, or to uphold the account of staff in the event of a complaint or incident.
In order to deliver the benefits, a BWC system must be simple to deploy, easy to manage and straightforward to use; the wearable camera is a tool for the user to protect themselves – but it isn’t the focus of their job, nor should it be. It is essential they are easy to use and deploy with minimal training. While the back-office management suite needs to be secure and able to deliver court-admissible evidence packages.
Asda has become one of the first major retailers in the UK to use Body Worn Cameras after a successful trial, which began in 2016. There are now over 900 Edesix VideoBadges being utilised in over 250 Asda sites nationwide, with more growth expected in the near future.
Edesix collaborated with CBES, Asda’s preferred security installer, to design and install a tailored wearable CCTV deployment system perfectly suited to the retail giant’s needs. Edesix and CBES worked closely at Asda’s national security centre and across four store deployments to provide them with the knowledge and expertise so the camera’s could be rolled out in the remaining stores with minimum impact on store efficiency. This system, which is intuitive to use and requires minimum training, has enabled staff to integrate the cameras into their daily working processes with minimal fuss.
Asda, along with CBES, identified the need to re-think its key security policy around challenging aggressive behaviour towards staff. In searching for a technology partner, CBES chose Edesix as their BWC provider, to deploy initially to the most affected stores, eventually rolling out to over 250 sites across the UK. The aim was to improve the safety of colleagues in public facing roles and shoppers within the stores, whilst producing compelling evidence when needed.
As a result of this partnering strategy, which relied on both the innovative nature of Edesix’s technology and communication between all parties, Asda has been able to improve colleague security, diffuse aggressive and volatile situations and reduce valued investigation time, thus reducing costs. Since the deployment, Asda has proven the viability of these cameras by securing numerous convictions relating to theft and violence against staff.
Waitrose has also announced that it is utilising Edesix Body Worn Cameras to trial its new in-home delivery service. This first-of-its kind service allows drivers to enter a customer’s home while they are out and put their groceries away. All delivery drivers will wear Edesix’s VideoBadges, which will record their exact movements when they enter a customers property, providing peace of mind for the delivery driver, the customer and for Waitrose.
For more information please visit www.edesix.com