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Service fits shoe retailer

Wynsors World of Shoes, with £38m revenue and shoe sales of four million pairs a year, has commissioned trials of a remote security monitoring and intelligence network.

It’s a service Lodge Service operates from its national centre in Accrington, Lancashire, and it targets savings of 30 per cent in operational and security costs for the shoe retailer. And that’s while increasing safety and protection for staff, customers and assets, says Simon Chapman, managing director of Lodge Service.

Founded in 1956, Wynsors World of Shoes is the trading name of Courtesy Shoes Ltd, a member of the E-Sutton Group. It has grown from a handful of shops and market stalls into a major shoe retailer in the north of England, with a chain of 42 stores averaging over 6,500 sq. ft. (603 sq m) and on-line shopping at Pictured: The Wynsors store in Huddersfield.

Lodge Service has supplied security and fire alarm monitoring and key holder support for 20 years through the Guardhall Security business, acquired in 2013, and provides security escorts for Wynsors’ staff when alarm activation requires attendance outside of store opening hours. The new service connects CCTV monitoring and alarm systems in selected retail outlets and distribution centres directly, by video and audio IP links, to Lodge Service’s intelligence network.

There is also ‘lone worker’ protection out of hours – staff wear a ‘man down’ device that sends an alarm signal to the security centre if it detects the wearer is in a prone position or fails to press an integrated button at pre-determined time intervals during a shift. Projected cost savings for the programme result from centralised remote monitoring 24-7, and more efficient alarm response and system servicing. This includes reductions in staff time and call out costs due to fewer false alarms, says Simon Chapman.

The intelligence network means viewing and verification of an alarmed incident by Lodge Service’s Accrington centre, and notification of 999 services as necessary, liaising with and guiding personnel when they arrive on site to deal with an incident. As for false alarms, systems can be reset remotely, without the time or cost of an escorted visit to the store outside of opening hours.

Wynsors property and management team can view remotely ‘live’ and recorded images from any site. Video and audio recordings can be retained as evidence, whether for prosecution, management review and staff training.

Craig Ovenden, property manager for Wynsors World of Shoes, says: “We want to use the latest monitoring and internet technology to reduce costs and save management time in having to attend stores out of hours and reset the security system because of a false alarm. The high level of monitoring and response creates a safer and more secure environment for staff and customers. Remote CCTV links enable us to verify every alarm activation – and if there is a notifiable incident, we can watch, record it for evidence and provide the emergency services with a running commentary when they arrive on site,”

And Simon Chapman of Lodge Service says: “Lodge Service’s national intelligence network enables retail and corporate clients to target resources according to the risk profile we identify with them, for maximum loss reduction and return on investment. This addresses key concerns for property and operations managers in the pressure on margins and management time.”

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