Restaurants tend to be
susceptible to fraud just because of the amount
and volume of activity, both in customers and employees,
turnover with employees, the easily removable inventory,
and the amount of cash that goes back and forth between
servers and customers. Some areas you want
to look at as being more susceptible to fraud– anything an employee can
touch, whether that’s a transaction or a product. Think about your payment system. Can employees issue voids
or refunds on their own, and how do you manage
employee meals? Anything that looks
weird in a pattern will be an indicator
or a red flag. So look at things
like one employee that has more refunds or voids
than others or a higher number of voids happening
at a certain time of day or a certain day of
the week in accordance with an employee’s schedule
or something like that. There are several things
that restaurants can do, easy little steps that
can help prevent fraud. One of those would be
looking at the ways that employees can
issue voids or refunds, if those have to be
approved by a manager or if an employee can
do those on their own. Another way would be to keep
a good handle on inventory. Your POS system will integrate
with your accounting system, and it’s a good way to stay
on top of things that’s happening at the register. And a lot of systems, also,
now allow managers and owners to keep an eye on transactions
outside of the office. Executing a surprise
cash count is a great way to both deter and find
if there’s any fraud. Employees who commit
fraud often do so once they’ve learned the
routines of the business. If you think fraud is
occurring, the best thing to do is pretty quickly contact
an attorney and someone who has experience in
that type of activity.