The majority of crime impacting retail is carried out by a minority of individuals from the criminal fraternity. These prolific and persistent offenders plague retailers across the UK, threatening their revenue and safety of store colleagues and customers.

Locally, there are a number of organisations including Business Improvement Districts, Business Crime Reduction Partnerships and local watch schemes set up to support businesses to reduce this risk, often working with police and local authorities to deliver their objectives.

The unfortunate truth is that BIDs and BCRPs do not exist in every local area and there are an enormous number of stores which receive little to no support other than from their own business, leaving them particularly vulnerable to risk. The local convenience store situated in the middle of a housing estate, closing late each night. The retail park which sits miles from the nearest town or city and the independent pharmacy in the small but very busy village.

NBCS have identified this gap and have a solution – NBCS Connect Direct.

Launched at this week’s National Business Crime Conference in Nottingham, hosted by NBCS, Connect Direct is a store led service which targets the most prolific and persistent offenders involved in shop theft, anti-social behaviour and abuse and violence towards store colleagues.

Through streamlined processes and specialised technology, Connect Direct provides businesses with an efficient and sustainable service which can be set up quickly in response to vulnerable stores.

The service is delivered through a dedicated team of Business Crime Liaison Officers who directly support stores and liaise with police and local authorities to generate series linked investigations, ensuring that incidents are not dealt with in silo and the true extent of offending is addressed. Operational delivery is focused locally, and strategy is set regionally and nationally through central account management, ensuing the service is always carried out in line with business needs.

In addition to this, NBCS has partnered with leading conflict management specialist, Maybo, to make its best in class training accessible to Connect Direct members. Maybo are globally respected specialists in managing conflict and workplace violence and have influenced best practice across the retail and hospitality sectors since 1998. Leading brands in the UK, Europe, US, Canada and Australia benefit from their advice on policy and controls and their leading training programmes for key customer-facing roles.

NBCS Connect Direct now brings Maybo’s expertise and training solutions to retailers of all sizes. Members receive free access to Maybo’s eLearning course for frontline staff, Reducing Conflict and Workplace Violence Risks, along with significant discounts on certified Maybo training programmes and access to practical risk reduction guidance and resources.

Local BIDs and BCRPs are a critical part of the national business crime reduction infrastructure. All NBCS BID and BCRP members now have the option to deliver this service with NBCS and receive additional revenue to sustain and grow their own organisations.

Sarah Bird, Connect lead at NBCS said “We all know that most of the crime committed in stores across the country is done by a small proportion of individuals. We also know that without the right level of intelligence, data sharing and engagement with the authorities, positive outcomes are challenging to achieve when we are dealing with volume crime.

Through Connect Direct, we put all our resources into targeting the top 20% of offenders committing 80% of the crime and to empower retail staff through education and provide them with the external support needed to help them protect themselves.

By working collaboratively with Maybo and existing local crime partnerships, we move one step closer to improving our national response to business crime reduction and demonstrate to our members our commitment to support them and their teams across the UK.”


Further details – Connect Direct Launch

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