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Britain's 'Gig Economy' Fuelling Internal Theft: Study

Published on Jul 19 2018 12:00 PM in Retail tagged: Britain / study / internal theft / Wicklander-Zulawski Europe / WZ

Britain's 'Gig Economy' Fuelling Internal Theft: Study

According to a study by training body Wicklander-Zulawski Europe (WZ), Britain's so-called lower-wage 'gig economy' could be driving up the rate of internal staff dishonesty.

The Cost Of Internal Theft

Internal theft has increased by over a third within the last 12 months, according to the British Retail Consortium (BRC). Some 50% of respondents to the WZ survey said that there has been an increase in internal theft within the last 12 months.

Internal dishonesty often involves greater loss values over longer periods of time, contrary to the belief that shoplifting, or external theft, is the main contributing factor in store losses.

Motivations For Internal Theft Vary

The study found that in cases relating to internal theft and fraud, 85% of staff members caught cited financial pressures as a motivating factor for dishonesty.

Some 25% of those surveyed also mentioned that they felt a sense of entitlement, and another 20% mentioned they stole ‘in lieu of a pay raise or promotion.’ One in ten (10%) of theft cases were said to be motivated by staff feeling under-appreciated.

Around 40% of those dismissed said that, due to the high turnover rate in the gig economy, they were motivated by the perceived lower risk of getting caught. Additionally, some surveyed said they believed there were ‘no real consequences’ for stealing, according to the study.

Teaching Interview Tactics


Wicklander-Zulawski Europe is an organisation that trains loss prevention and HR professionals in non-confrontational interview techniques, helping determine when an individual is being truthful.

According to the organisation, the non-confrontational interview programme helps eliminate conflicts as well as helping reduce objections and denials when interviewing dishonest employees and non-employees alike.

© 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Padideh Aghanoury. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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