Namibia: Pick n Pay benefits from anonymous tip-off line
Economist.com.na - May 20th, 11:42
Shrinkage costs Pick n Pay
During the financial year 2011/2012, Pick n Pay lost almost N$8million as a result of theft and pilferage which took place in a number of Pick n Pay stores across the country. In a bid to bring down shrinkage in its stores, the retailer introduced an anonymous tip-off line for the public and its stakeholders.
This established a link between people with information on racketeering and the store managers which enabled the latter to investigate criminal activity without compromising the source. The tip-off line is active for all Pick ‘n Pay stores as well as for the group’s administrative centres.
According to the centralised buying manager at Pick n Pay, Michael Hongonekua, the retailer launched its anonymous tip-off service in 2011 “to enable all its stakeholders (which include its suppliers, customers and service providers) as well as Pick n Pay employees to anonymously tip off any irregularities that occur within its structures at managerial level and store level
“What we want to achieve with this is to curb down shrinkage in all Pick n Pay stores. Last year Pick n Pay had a shrinkage of almost N$8million. So if you can think of how many families N$8million can feed, how many salaries N$8million can pay for a company that wants to create a future and enhance life of our employees and our country as a whole,” he said.
He said, since the launch of this service the retailer has benefited as the company has reduced its losses through theft at its various stores.
“Pick n Pay has benefited tremendously since the launch of this service because all possible scenarios where we as a franchise could have lost money, are covered. We have received tips on various people selling our products on the streets and on the black market, we have identified several areas where we have noticed collaborative and internal syndicates within our stores,” he said.
“Tipsters are not asked to identify themselves, their duty is just to inform us of the irregularities that they have picked up at store level or managerial level, or irregularities they have noticed be it with our suppliers or our own employees in the Pick n Pay structures,” he said adding that the retailer has already launched several investigations as a result of information furnished by members of the public and its own employees.
It launched a series of investigations which involved the collaboration between its employees and outsiders who have been stealing from Pick n Pay stores.
“The service is totally anonymous, all you have to do is just tell us what you have seen and when you have seen it. You do not have to tell us who you are or where you are from. We do not keep your number, your number is not registered on the line that we have. And we do not need a statement from you. We are then going to launch our own investigation into the allegations or tips that you have given us and take the information from there,” he stated.
Although, Hongonekua could not tell The Economist, how many tip-offs Pick n Pay received since the launch of this service, he said the retailer has received two important tip-offs this year which it is currently investigating.
He further urged members of the public and everybody who is associated with Pick n Pay to use this service to its full potential.
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