THE CORNERSTONE OF LOSS CONTROL?
THE UNDERCOVER INVESTIGATOR
Many businesses focus their loss control strategies on preventing unwanted elements from getting in from the outside. While this is certainly an important step in securing assets and minimising risk, what if the truly dangerous element has already made itself comfortable within the operations of the organisation?
In financial management, internal audits play an integral role in ensuring the financial stability and integrity of the organisation. Similarly, savvy businesses should expose themselves to an internal auditor of a different kind Â the undercover investigator.
ÂIf conducted correctly, these investigations become the cornerstone of the loss control portfolio,Â advises Kyle Condon, Managing Director of D&K Management Consultants. ÂThe successful deployment of well-trained and experienced undercover agents is the single most effective company security tactic.Â
To Condon, the undercover investigator serves to manage risk from the inside out Â in a consistent manner. ÂThe innermost workings of the business can be seen as the core of an onion. While the outer layers of security prevent threats from getting in, the investigator placed at the centre of the operations ensures that those already at the core are not putting the business at risk.Â
Undercover investigators are not only useful for theft or loss investigations but also offer valuable insights as deployed auditors. ÂUndercover investigation services are a fantastic way to identify weaknesses in company policies and operating procedures. If these policies are not ÂauditedÂ, chances are that you may not ever know where the real issues lie. With a consistent presence, the investigator continues to protect the business in real-time, rather than reviewing what went wrong after the fact. This creates a proactive loss control strategy,Â he adds.
In addition to risk mitigation, undercover investigations offer various advantages. From the development of accurate security budgets and strategies (including elements such as cameras, manpower, policies and procedures, employment processes, etc.), to the identification of wasted resources, or unethical employees Â having an agent on its payroll gives the business access to essential security and operational information.
Undercover investigation services should be introduced into the clientÂs workforce. Investigators are deployed as everyday workers or contractors, as would be the case for clientsÂ routine recruiting procedure. Within a short space of time, the right investigator would have integrated him/ herself amongst the rest of the employees.
Condon provides four key tips for ensuring the undercover investigator remains impartial and effective; ÂRotate the investigator every six months. Place them in different sectors or departments to get a full view of the businessÂ operations. Place them strategically to combat crime, taking the guessing out of the game. Use the intel they provide to assist in creating accurate and impactful policies and procedures.Â
While the undercover investigation services are in progress, information is passed on to the client directly. This should happen on a weekly basis. ÂThe weekly reports enable the investigation firm to formulate graphs and provide analytics that will clearly show trends and patterns of the various associated risks,Â concludes Condon.
Established in 1993 by Declan and Kyle Condon, D&K Management Consultants is firmly entrenched as the preferred investigations and risk consultancy provider in Africa and abroad. DeclanÂs legacy is a wealth of investigative skills and experience, which - combined with KyleÂs vast understanding of risk analysis and security management - are applied to every case file handled by the company.
With a significant handpicked force of investigators and security specialists, D&K Management Consultants provides criminal and civil investigations on behalf of companies or individuals from every sector. The same level of discretion and dedication is afforded to each and every client, whether they are blue chip or local community. Assisting clients to operate in a hostile business environment is a D&K speciality. Criminal and civil investigations are simply the key required to unlock the door leading to successful loss control portfolios.
For more information, visitwww.investigations.co.za.