Celebrating its 40th birthday this coming year, Inter Chalet has successfully expanded its customer offering from a traditional builders merchant, selling timber, plate material, scrap metal and building materials to become Home Park Inter Chalet, a Do It Yourself supermarket for the home and garden.
Now eight stores, including seven partner stores, are combined in to one, offering everything from complete kitchens to plants and pottery. No boring shelves full of products, but playful presentations to inspire home improvers.
The 30,000m2 retailer, faces a challenge in protecting against theft in store.
“As a retail organisation, we had to deal with a lot of theft from both our customers and our employees,” explains Hans Janssen, Financial Manager at Inter Chalet. “For some years we researched security possibilities that could help us decrease the level of theft.
“We eventually contacted Checkpoint Meto, an organisation that provides security cameras and after a few sessions with them, we were convinced about the quality of the Panasonic products, so we went for it. We haven’t regretted our decision.”
Inter Chalet utilises Panasonic's full range of video surveillance systems, including the 360-degree surveillance cameras, to provide a better view of the store and avoid blind spots whilst reducing the number of cameras required.
Various outdoor cameras are also installed in the surrounding parking area. At the entrance of the shop, there is a camera system together with a security screen to monitor those entering the premises, with various indoor cameras further throughout the store that help prevent shop-lifting, all of which are either 4K or Full-HD ensuring excellent image quality throughout the store.
"The security systems have more than halved our levels of theft."
In addition, cameras installed with POS integration help prevent the store from fraud. This is achieved by linking the POS data with the camera image. It means that the store is able to check video footage relating to the receipt, if there is a concern over any potentially fraudulent transactions.
“We’ve spent many years working with Panasonic, and we’re happy about the quality and performance of its products,” says Hans Janssen. "We are also very happy about the service from both Panasonic and its partners in Holland."
“The security systems have more than halved our levels of theft from approximately 7% to just 3%.This has been achieved by not only catching shoplifters, but also by making people aware that we have an advanced security system in place,” says Hans Janssen.
As well as the main aim of reducing crime throughout the store, the cameras installed, in particular those with POS integration, are used daily to assist in speeding up the process of problem solving. Hans Janssen continues, “All of the checkouts have their own camera above each desk, meaning we are able to solve problems more quickly. Before we did this, there were sometimes discussions between customers and the employee where the customer may have claimed they paid with a 50 Euro note, and the employee said it was a 10 Euro note, at which point the customers used to have to wait till the end of the day to resolve the problem. Now with the new cameras in place, we can get the issue resolved immediately.”
"We were convinced about the quality of Panasonic products."
With the use of 4K and Full-HD Cameras, the security equipment can connect to a face recognition server that determines customer demographics, such as age or gender. This is used mainly for identifying people from a black list, however, people counting serves not only security purposes, but also marketing by collecting data on the number of visitors in specific areas of the store. This allows for Inter Chalet to understand what their visitors are more attracted to in their store, so they can better optimise the store for their customers.
"This is something we are really excited about. The face counting and face recognition is very reliable, so we can use the people counting to provide evidence to the partner stores, on how many customer visits they have," expands Hans Janssen.
“As a finance manager, I am extremely interested in data analysis, such as people counting and cross line detection. Because of these cameras, I am now able to combine the figures with our sales and profit to better manage the store,” says Hans Janssen.
"We are able to solve problems more quickly."
Ten years after first installing Panasonic security equipment, Inter Chalet continue to use Panasonic, due to its professional quality of both the products and the programs used. “I would advise other organisations to choose Panasonic security solutions. It is not only the quality of the products you get, but also the highly professional way Panasonic treats its clients.”
“I am looking forward to utilising some other Panasonic products such as the LinkRay™ and laser projection technology, to use as innovative tools to make our store stand out more,” comments Hans Janssen.
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