Many people think that biometrics in retail have absolutely no future, but the truth of the matter is that biometric security technologies can be integrated into just about everything, including retail.
Retailers are not only interested in increasing their profits, but they are also interested in reducing loss from theft, improving their productivity, and ensuring that they are getting the most work from their employees.
For this reason, you can expect to see biometrics in retail very soon, if not already.
Today you can buy a variety of security devices that use biometrics technology, including biometric safes, biometric locks, biometric time clocks, and even biometric scanners.
So what could biometrics technologies be used for in retail?
Preventing Theft - Imagine if every item of clothing in a retail store was tagged with a unique device that could only be accessed by the store employees. This device would be just like a regular anti-theft device, but much smaller and nearly impossible to remove.
Using these devices would enable store owners to ensure that only their employees would be able to allow items outside the store, thus preventing the items from being stolen.
After all, the fingerprint of the employee that sold the item would be stored in the database, and would be easily tracked back to that employee if they were using their fingerprints to steal items.
Improving Productivity - Most employers and retail store owners are always trying to increase the productivity of their employees, and using biometric technologies can help to improve productivity significantly. Imagine if the biometrics technology enabled customers to check out their items quicker, helped employees to stock shelves faster, or sped up the sales process. It would certainly benefit the store owner greatly.
Ensuring Proper Attendance - The main loss for many retail store owners is time, as their employees show up late but have their friends punch in their time cards for them. This means that they don’t spend as many hours working as they should, which means fewer sales are made.
For employers that really want to get the most out of their employees, using biometric time clocks is a great way to ensure that all their employees arrive at the time they say they do. It will seriously reduce the amount of time loss, and will help employers to know if one of their sales personnel is consistently arriving late or not at all.
Upgrade Security - Many stores around the world use a simple key or combination lock to close up for the night, but this can often lead to break-ins and theft. CCTV and video monitoring systems are used, but nothing can be done to catch a perpetrator that comes in with a mask on.
However, rather than using a simple security system that can be hacked or lock-picked, using a biometric security system will ensure that only authorized personnel can gain access to parts of the retail store that contain all the valuables. This will prevent theft and drastically improve security measures.
The cost of biometrics is high, which means that it may take a few years for biometrics in retail to achieve its full potential and popularity.
However, rest assured that it is on the horizon, as biometrics technology is definitely the way of the future. Rather than being at the mercy of thieves and criminals, business owners and retail managers will have a way to protect themselves and improve productivity significantly.
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