In this video, I want to talk about how one single piece of paper can help you prevent fraud behind the bar. Now, you spend thousands and thousands on a state of the art point of sale system, you choose your staff very carefully and you hope that no money is going to go missing. And you hope that they’re nobody frauding you. But unfortunately, wherever there’s people and money, there’s going to be some element of fraud taking place. Now or will take place in the future. So how do you avoid this?
Well, there’s one single piece of paper that can help you in your continuing efforts to prevent it. It’s a daily challenge, it’s something where you’ve got to create a controlled culture and this one piece of paper will help you do this. And that is in the area of void recording. So voids are those transactions that take place in a point of sale system that can be reversed. Now depending on the security settings or management features that you’ve enabled on your point of sale system, it may not be possible for your staff to void out a transaction. When I say void out, I mean reverse the transaction. On older systems, basic cash registers, it’s really easy to void a transaction.
But one thing that cannot be hidden is the fact that when you run a report at the end of the day on be it your old cash register or your new state of the art point of sale system, the end of day report will give you a total of how many of those voids went through in that day. You can do it by shift, at the end of every shift, you can check how many voids went through. Now that will only give you a number. Your system might not allow you the ability to see which transactions were voided out, which items were voided out, which entire bills were voided out. However, by using a void record sheet and insisting with your staff that this is an essential part of the operation, if you use a void record sheet you’re going to tell your staff that they need to keep a record of every time a void takes place. That is if you allow it to take place in your business.
I worked with some bars that only allow their managers to void it out. I noticed in some grocery stores, if a clerk wants to void out a transaction you’ve got to wait for the manager or the owner to do it for them. They’re not allowed that discretion. So that’s up to you. In any case, you need to keep a record of what’s being reversed out. At the end of the day, this is food, this is drink that’s left your bar, that’s left the kitchen that you’ve paid for the ingredients but you’re not getting payment for potentially for some reason. Now, it could be a mistake. Something could happen where somebody presses 1,000 pints of Guinness instead of one pint of Guinness. It happens all the time. But what you want to do is you want to eliminate the mistakes from the fraud and isolate those fraudulent transactions and find out where are they coming from, who is responsible for them and eliminating that person from your business because you don’t want them affecting it.
So a void record sheet is going to be very helpful for this. If you don’t already have one in place in your business, right below this video you’re going to be able to download one. You’ll download one and use it for your business, tell your staff all about it. Tell them they need to put in there all the details necessary to ensure that that void is classed as a mistake and not fraud. So at the end of the day, you can work out which shift lost you money, which shift had the most voids. When I worked at bars in the past who had this problem, we noticed that most of the voids were coming from a particular shift. And then we were able to narrow it down even further and we found out it was actually one person who was very poor on the cash register. They weren’t defrauding the bar, but they were just really poor using the cash register so we were able to identify that and extra staff training was needed for that particular staff member on that particular machine. So, put in place your void record sheet, put in one more line of defense in your bar against potential fraud and you’ll be one step closer to making those goals that you set out earlier in the year.
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