New study looks at EAS, business intelligence use at retailers

New research from Retail Systems Research (RSR) and sponsored by ADT's Sensormatic Retail Solutions points to a trend towards the benefits of business intelligence for retail operations and loss prevention.

Business intelligence is the practice of drilling down through high volumes of business data to find meaning and relationships in the data, and the study found that the practice of business intelligence with information on returns and voids can help boost a company's performance.

Some 53 percent of the companies surveyed said better business intelligence was needed to effectively use the loss prevention data coming from the stores. That data includes not only traditional loss prevention data such as inventory exceptions and return information, but also video surveillance data.

The study also found that top retail performers -- defined as the retailers whose sales growth is better than the 3 percent industry average -- are more likely to use electronic article surveillance. Three times the number of top retailers than underperformers were using EAS.

Respondents to the survey listed internal theft as their top source of shrinkage. Internal theft of merchandise was followed by shoplifting and the internal theft of cash. The study also found that 71 percent of the respondents to the RSR survey frequently use exception analysis reporting for loss prevention.