A single retail store can have half a dozen different keys or more once you account for the locks for the front and rear entrances, office doors, storage areas, and other secure areas. When a manager or employee loses even a single key for your store, the security breach can lead to thousands of dollars in loss if it falls into the wrong hands. Take action immediately to deal with your store's key loss and prevent the problem from occurring again in the future.
Rekey or Replace the Locks
Start by calling a commercial locksmith and having the locks either replaced or rekeyed. Even if you can recover the missing key at some point, there's no guaranteed it wasn't copied while it was missing. Replacing or rekeying the locks is the only way to ensure there's no unauthorized access of the store. Rekeying tends to cost less than a full replacement of a lock, but it's not available for all commercial locks. The locksmith can advise you on what's best to re-secure your store.
Start a Key Management Plan
Once you have the affected locks worked on by a locksmith, it's time to prevent future issues with lost keys. An official key management plan is essential for all employees to prevent losses. Management plans vary depending on the type of business you run and the number of locks you have, but they share some common characteristics like policies for reclaiming keys from employees that are fired or quit. Routine key audits to determine who has access to which keys are also helpful for practically all kinds of retail businesses.
Invest in Tracking Tools
Thanks to modern technology, it's now possible to attach a small tracking chip to each individual key you distribute for your store. These tracking chips respond to mobile apps to help you and your employees locate missing keys before anyone could get a chance to copy or use them. If a key still goes missing for more than a few minutes before anyone notices and uses the tracking app, it's still best to replace or rekey the matching lock for maximum security.
Switch to Key Cards
Magnetic key cards are now preferred over metal keys by many businesses, including retail stores. Electronic locks that work with them are easily reset with the push of a button, locking out any missing or stolen key cards immediately without the need for a locksmith call.
Contact a commercial locksmith for more help.