Creating a Dispensary Security Plan

The primary purpose of a cannabis dispensary security plan (DSP) is to provide a safe and secure environment for the store’s employees, customers, and visitors, while abiding by all legal requirements. Let’s take a look at the three most important components of any retail shop security plan.

Dispensary Security Plan Considerations:

1. Facility Security

Creating a security plan for your cannabis dispensary

The physical site security of a cannabis retail store is typically comprised of a camera system, an alarm system, and an access control system, bolstered with active security personnel. Both internal and external theft are potentially issues; employees can pocket cash or merchandise, and the possibility of armed robbery or burglary is very real, especially for dispensaries which have difficulties finding financial services and consequently maintain substantial cash reserves. You’ll also need a system to archive and store your security system footage for the appropriate period mandated by law. You may want to potentially consider hiring an external security service to monitor your alarms and handle the camera footage storage requirements.

When you evaluating surveillance system providers, check out 6 Considerations When Evaluating Dispensary Security Software.

2. Product Security

Securing both your cannabis and your cash receipts is another primary concern for retailers. You’re going to need a ton of locked safes and secure product storage. You’ll want to have a main vault for flower storage, and controlled security cases for areas where it is displayed to help prevent shoplifting by overly curious customers. Consider investing in shatter- resistant glass as well. To handle your cash, you’ll want at least one more heavy-duty safe. At the end of the day, your entire stock of cannabis, edibles, concentrates, seeds, and everything else you offer must come off the floor and into a locked space (double check that you’ve designed your safe room with adequate space to accommodate this). Consider segregating employee access based on job duties; budtenders don’t need to do anything with cash other than receiving it, so they don’t need safe access. On the other hand, your bookkeeper does need safe access but does not need access to the inventory or product storage areas of your facility.

Learn some useful tips to detect and prevent theft and fraud in a cannabis dispensary.

3. Policies & Procedures

Developing a comprehensive set of security-related policies and procedures to follow is of critical importance for cannabis business retailers. All employees should receive extensive training in this regard. The most important thing to develop is an extensive auditing procedure that can track and account for every gram of cannabis that passes through your facility and tie it either directly to inventory or to a receipt. Usually, retailers will audit their sales floor inventory on a daily basis, supplemented with a whole-store check once per month or so. Work with your attorney and security consultant to flesh out these documents and ensure your security operations are in compliance with all laws for your state/province and municipality.