As a business owner, you can be trusting, paranoid or (and here’s the recommended direction) cautious. Employee theft happens. People you hire steal from you, or worse, from your customers. The FBI calls it the fastest growing crime in America, accounting for about $3 billion of lost business profit every year. And that number only goes up in a down economy. There are a number of steps you can take to protect yourself – and several are outlined here – but the first, most important step is Employee Bond Insurance. This supplemental insurance provides bonding for all employees, including those who typically are considered not bondable because of past behavior, such as ex-offenders.
Also known as a fidelity bond insurance or employee dishonesty bond, an employee bond insurance policy protects your business from acts of dishonesty and fraud committed by anyone on your payroll.
You should consider Employee Bond Insurance if you have employees who routinely go into the homes or businesses of clients to perform services such as cleaning, maintenance or repair work. You should also consider employee bond insurance if you place employees in a position of trust within your company, such as a bookkeeper or anyone who can steal directly from your bank account or inventory.
You can shop online for competitive fidelity bond insurance quotes as you would for any other type of insurance policy. In the meantime, here are some tips to help protect you from employee theft and related liability.
Do run background checks on all prospective employees, even those who come highly recommended by friends and relatives.
Invite employee participation in establishing written rules, checks and oversight processes to discourage employee theft and encourage confidential reporting of suspicious behavior.
Maintain the same ethical standards for everyone, from senior management on down.
Be wary of employees living beyond their salaries, employees who exhibit wild mood or behavioral changes, defensive behavior even when asked straightforward questions, and of course, creditors contacting your office about an employee’s debt. Do not accuse anyone of anything without consulting an employment law attorney, but do monitor and document suspicious behavior.