The Indian retail industry is on a roll. The country ranks fifth, among the largest retail markets in the world. The market size of the Indian retail industry was around US$ 500 billion (Source: IBEF) in 2013, and it is expected to grow at the rate of 15–20 per cent per annum. Retailing has played a major role the world over in increasing productivity across a wide range of consumer goods and services. While, in the affluent and developed countries, the organised retail industry accounts for almost 80 per cent of the total retail trade, in India the industry accounts for merely 8–10 per cent of the total retail trade. This highlights immense scope for further penetration of organised retail in India.
Retail stores are facing a heightened need for superior security. With the increase in retail outlets in India, the number of thefts and robberies is also increasing. So, the industry needs to be safeguarded to sustain growth, employment opportunities and revenue to the national exchequer, as the retail industry is a significant contributor to India’s gross domestic product (GDP).
Safety & security
Security solutions providers now offer a single, integrated security system to address the major challenges faced by the retail industry. Their solutions are designed to prevent thefts and frauds, safeguard assets and resources, reduce costs and boost profitability, and increase comfort and convenience for the customers.
Preventing thefts & frauds
Prevention of thefts and frauds can make a significant difference to a business. Shrinkage alone costs the retail businesses billions of rupees each year. Therefore, one has to ensure that every transaction is complete and legitimate. To accomplish this, security solutions providers have come up with video surveillance to alarms and point-of-sale exception alerts, which reduce shrinkage and cash theft. This protects assets, thereby boosting profitability.
Containing stock losses
Over 35 per cent of stock losses are caused by theft and fraud by staff. So, the security systems nowadays ensure that only authorised personnel are given access to restricted areas and that they do not abuse their privileges by stealing or admitting unauthorised personnel. Thus, security and access control solutions are integrated with IT systems to give one database, boosting security and removing the need for duplicate data entry. Now solutions are available to link different systems to identify theft and fraud as it happens.
Efficiency & productivity
To reduce costs and boost productivity whilst maintaining high levels of customer service, some leading security solutions companies now offer latest technology to monitor and record every area of retail premises. Their intelligent video analytics help to identify trends, exceptions and training requirements; monitor traffic flow; and help in providing simple footfall data. The solutions work seamlessly with other security and business systems, increasing their effectiveness and reducing operating costs. Also, they provide round-the-clock monitoring systems, fire alarm systems, time and attendance management system through biometric, which are remotely monitored by their respective ‘Command and Control’ centres.
Footfalls in the retail outlets are a vital factor; the more the footfall, the more the opportunity to boost sales. Security solutions providers, with their software analytics, furnish data on the number of footfalls in a retail shop on a real-time basis. Indian companies can also gauge the impact of their ad campaigns by the increase in footfall in their retail stores on the same day or the subsequent days.
A leading security solutions provider has come out with a novel initiative called Security as a Service, or ‘SaaS, whereby they provide affordable security services to every segment including the retail industry without customers having to own or manage the security system. This trail-blazing initiative has been hailed by people in all walks of society. SaaS provides security services in an affordable manner, using the power of the Internet with cloud computing technology. Hundreds of retail outlets have benefited from SaaS initiative.
Also, there is availability of security products for customers through the ‘Zero Risk Zero Investment & Zero Management’ concept, by which customers can secure their homes, offices, shops, retail stores, etc.
Range of security
Security solutions companies offer a variety of retail security solutions, such as access control, electronic article surveillance (EAS), video surveillance, remote viewing, video analytics, intrusion and fire monitoring, secure communication terminal, shop security system, intruder detection, transaction data with stored video recordings, etc. All these, which were hitherto thought of impossible, are made a daily necessity thanks to the power of the Internet and cloud computing.