Five Below wanted to build a new asset protection department from the ground up, but they did not have the right tools in place to build a solid foundation. They were able to generate high-level reports in Excel, but these reports were unable to provide users with actionable insights and relied on IT to create and distribute reports. With the green light to evaluate best in class analytics applications, they created a list of business requirements and soon found the one solution that met them all: Agilence.
Five Below is one of the fastest growing retailers in the country with more than 550 stores in 32 states. Catering to teens, pre-teens and beyond, Five Below carries an ever-evolving and exciting assortment of products that are grouped into eight categories: Style, Room, Sports, Tech, Crafts, Party, Candy and Now. At Five Below everything, every day is just $5 and below.
Gregg Smith, Senior Director of Asset Protection at Five Below, was tasked with creating an asset protection department from the ground up. To do this, he knew he would have to leverage the existing network of district managers, store operations and the sales audit team. The problem was that the lack of reporting software made this difficult. They were able to generate basic high-level reports using Excel, but these relied on IT to create and deliver the reports, and required the manual manipulation of the information by field users to find trends and anomalies.
On top of this, Five Below was growing fast. This put additional pressures on Smith to build an effective asset protection department, while also enabling the field teams to become much more efficient so that they could focus on growth objectives.
Identified an estimated $700,000 in inventory shrink the first year of deployment by identifying misused SKUs across the chain.
In one year, over $225,000 in fraud was identified.
By utilizing Agilence to generate reports, IT saved 80+ hours annually, and Asset Protection saved 200+ hours annually.
Five Below required a data analytics solution built for Asset Protection, Sales Audit and Store Operations. One that could provide actionable insights to the field team, remove the burden of report creation and distribution from IT, provide meaningful results to other departments within the organization, and, most of all, one that would be scalable and could grow with the company.
Smith’s search led him to Agilence. Agilence was able to provide a solution to all of his challenges, and then some. First and foremost, Agilence quickly and easily identified potential fraudulent behavior and provided field users with detailed transaction level data to investigate and resolve the issues, making it an ideal asset protection solution. Agilence’s intuitive user interface nearly eliminated the need for IT involvement, freeing the IT department to focus on growth and core activities. Along with this, the ability of Agilence to integrate with any data source has allowed departments like operations, merchandising, and finance to gain valuable insights from the application. “We find it exciting to work with a vendor that is constantly looking to improve their product for use today and into the future,” remarked Smith.
Building an asset protection department from the ground up in a fast growing company meant that Smith had to be as efficient as possible while being mindful of the time spent on Asset Protection tasks by his supporting departments. By utilizing Agilence to generate reports with actionable insights, there is no longer a need for IT to be involved in the process, giving them back 80 hours annually to focus on corporate growth. Utilizing the advanced insights functionality of Agilence also meant that the asset protection department saved over 200 hours per year, giving more than 5 weeks back to a small team to focus on solutions and results.
The use of Agilence also made the field teams, such as the Regional and District managers as well as the sales audit team, more efficient by allowing them to do more of their tasks in less time. Activities like item corrects, refunds, voids, suspended transactions, keyed credit cards, and bulk gift card purchases could now be easily monitored and corrected rather than be a manual, time-consuming task.
Smith has big goals for the future of his department. He plans to turn them into an organization that all other departments come to for insights into how they can become more efficient and improve profits, all while keeping losses at bay. Smith looks forward to doing this with Agilence by his side. “Agilence service has exceeded our expectations. We love working with people who like what they do and do their job well,” said Smith. “It’s exceptional to find a vendor with people who are passionate about their work, provide an excellent tool, and go out of their way to take care of their customers.”
– Gregg Smith, Senior Director of Asset Protection, Five Below