woman in car handing keys to valet

Valet stakeholders have much to worry about—staying relevant to edge out the competition, marketing their business to land prime venue real estate, parking laws and ordinance compliance, navigating complicated insurance concerns, and more, all of which affect their bottom line. Customer theft is another concern. We’ve all heard the stories, both verified and alleged, of crooked valet attendants who’ve stolen from vehicles. Not surprisingly, a 48 Hours investigation revealed that one in four valets are likely to commit theft.

However, one thing these proprietors should also be concerned about is whether attendants are stealing from the business itself. Let’s face it—if these attendants are willing to steal from customers, chances are they won’t hesitate to defraud the company they work for. In fact, according to the SBA, 60% of employees will steal from their workplace. Fortunately, the paperless SMS Valet® platform by TEZ mitigates employee fraud, allowing valet operations to secure their revenue stream from less than honest attendants.

The Problem With Paper Tickets 

Traditionally, when checking vehicles in and out, valet operators use paper tickets and collect a fee for each car parked. At the end of a shift, reconciliation should be routine—if one paper ticket was issued for each of the 100 vehicles that were parked at $5 per car, there should be 100 paper tickets and a till total yielding $500. However, a paper ticket fraud tactic frequently employed by the ‘shady attendant’ is reissuing a previously used ticket. While 120 vehicles might actually be parked during a shift, during reconciliation, only 100 paper tickets are accounted for. In this scenario, the valet attendant can easily pocket the extra $100 with no one the wiser. Unfortunately, for those operations still relying on paper tickets, ticket skimming is a common scam perpetrated by deceitful valet employees.

How SMS Valet® Fights Fraud 

SMS Valet®, however, makes it virtually impossible for corrupt valet attendants to swindle money right from under the valet operator's nose. Upon arrival, customers provide the attendant with their phone number which is assigned to a reusable identifying key tag that is attached to the guest’s keys. When the attendant parks the car, a hang tag is affixed to the vehicle’s mirror. The SMS Valet® app links the owner’s mobile number to both tags allowing the valet to match keys with the corresponding car. Because no two people have the same mobile phone, no fraudulent duplication or reissuing can occur. The valet attendant has no choice but to input one phone number for each parked vehicle into the system, making it easy to reconcile the till at the end of the shift. Further, with instant shift reports, attendants are unable to change or falsify numbers post-shift.

Drive More Revenue 

Difficult to defraud, clients currently using the SMS Valet® platform report an 10-15% increase in revenue that can easily offset the cost of the system. Plus, the platform offers a host of other features, including the ability to push advertisements and valuable surveys directly to guests’ phones, which can serve as additional revenue streams. Simply put, SMS Valet® by TEZ streamlines operations, expedites the valet process, elevates the customer experience, and keeps valet attendants honest while putting more money in the hands of operators.

Check out how simple it is for valet companies to use the automated, ticketless platform by visiting our webpage!