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  • Writer's pictureArtem Alabin

Automated Does Not Mean Theft-Proof

The COVID19 pandemic has accelerated the parking industry trend of full automation, whether it is gated or gateless, ticket or ticketless, touch or touchless. At the same time there has been an industry-wide increase in the use of various types of validations and cashless transactions, with attendants available only for customer support.

Consequently, an increasing number of parking operators falsely assume that they do not need mystery shopping services since they’ve converted to fully automated equipment and video cameras. Yet regardless of the type of operation, an unbiased set of eyes and ears outside of your organization is vital to the short- and long-term success of your business.

Rapid inflation, difficulty in staffing frontline positions, and lack of supervision due to scaled back auditing, management, and admin personnel have laid the groundwork for ticket and revenue handling violations. Too many parking attendants have created their own form of profit sharing.

National research comparing 2019 with COVID-affected 2020 service metrics showed that decreased volume in the COVID-affected parking world had no positive impact on service quality, integrity, and safety. In actuality, it got much worse.

View the linked video to see how fully automated facilities still make it possible for dishonest attendants to take their share.

The three most cost effective and revenue enhancing strategies for closing the door on violations are:

1. Secure and closely monitor keys for control equipment cabinets

2. Constantly check lane reports

3. Implement mystery shops

Today’s parking market is rife with various integrity violations at automated and manual facilities. Changing the mindset of any manager who thinks that full automation equals theft-proof needs to be a priority for every parking company leader.

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