SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Recent estimates claim the U.S. restaurant industry loses as much as $40 billion annually to employee theft, and users of Jacent Technologies' Voice Center are fighting back with technology. According to a news release, the voice recognition device helps operators compare actual revenue to customer orders by recording every phone call.

"We have a Jacent Voice Center unit in one of our stores and it gives us a view into our business that we never had before," said Deborah Moore, area coach for Kurani Pizza, a 50-unit Pizza Hut franchisee in Georgia. "We are able to listen to all problem calls, and we discovered an employee theft that was going on in a way we least expected and which was costing us about $2,000 a week."

Moore said that without Voice Center, it would have taken several months to detect the theft. As a result of the discovery, two employees were fired.

"Using Jacent's reports, we can identify under-performance in our stores on a daily basis," said Larry Ulik, vice president of operations for Colonial Foods, a 106-unit Pizza Hut franchisee in Virginia. "We have found several cases of employee theft which were costing our company a substantial loss in revenue. We were able to locate and fix the problem quickly in each case."

Jacent CallWise records and saves every call coming into the system for the past 30 days, and automatically highlights problem calls allowing employers to discover questionable employee actions that were previously undetectable. CallWise also provides extensive analytics and reports on a regular basis which further identify and document the illegal activities. CallWise continually reports calls versus orders, making it easy to identify a problem to investigate when orders suddenly drop to 50 percent of calls when they normally should be at 85 percent. CallWise also matches each phone order to what was actually entered into the POS system and reports any discrepancies.

"The in-depth reporting in CallWise identified some unexpected underperformance at one of our stores," said Tricia Morrison, field auditor for Pizza Hut of Maryland, a 48-unit franchisee. "After further investigation, we were able to confirm that it was related to employee theft and we were able to take immediate corrective action to fix the situation."

For more information, visit www.jacent.com jacent.com, or call 408-327-9100.

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