Top Ten Ways to Prevent Employee Theft

From Tracy Coenen of the Fraud Files Blog, Top Ten Ways to Prevent Employee Theft:

1. Education . If employees are aware of fraud and how it happens, they will be your best on-the-job sleuths.

2. Surprise Audits . . .

3. Hotlines . A mechanism for anonymous reporting of fraud encourages employees to look out for the best interests of the company, without fear of reprisal.

4. Assessment of Internal Controls . Companies need to take an honest look at what fraud prevention controls they have in place. They also need to be honest about whether or not those procedures and policies are being followed and whether or not they really work.

5. Background Checks . . .

6. Open Door Policy . Make employees feel that it is okay to discuss concerns with management. And then when they do discuss their concerns, act accordingly. Ask lots of questions, but be supportive.

7. Perception of Fairness . . . .

8. Employee Empowerment . Give employees the authority and confidence to make decisions and take action. The more involved and empowered employees feel, the more likely they are to look out for the best interests of the business.

9. Continuous Improvement . Management should be constantly looking for ways to improve policies and procedures. Fraud prevention is an ongoing, dynamic process that requires continuous evaluation and improvement.

10. Employee Involvement . Your employees are the people who are most aware of areas vulnerable to fraud. Talk to them and ask for their help in securing the company’s assets. Fraud prevention applies to everyone, from the top down.