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   By :  Ravinder
    Aug 08, 2013 03:37 PM
How does one celebrate 25 years in business?  Well first you have to make it to 25 years.  
 
A lot has changed in the last quarter of a century and Halo has been able to grow and evolve with the Canadian retail landscape and loss prevention as a whole.  Along the way we have had significant milestones with changes in suppliers and in 2006 rebranding to become Halo Metrics and recently becoming an authorized Checkpoint Channel Partner.  
 
Our focus has evolved from looking at loss prevention from a purely “locked down” security only view to more of how we can help create a secure but open sales environment with a focus on protecting the shopper’s experience.  Halo Metrics has been on the leading edge of loss prevention with regards to this thought and the future is exciting as we grow towards capturing valuable “metrics” that measure loss prevention and shopper experience data.  Keep an eye out for future updates!
 
Officially Halo Metrics Inc. turns 25 on August 8, 2013.  
 
Our customers are the backbone of our success and as a special thank you Halo Metrics hosted a few unique customer appreciation events in Vancouver, Toronto & Montreal.  The turnout was great for all the events.  To commemorate these events and our anniversary we setup a special web page with pictures.  Take a look:  www.halometrics.com/25 
 
We would also like thank Marketnews for their great coverage of our 25th anniversary in both their hard copy and online editions.   But most importantly thank you to our customers who have been with us throughout the years!
 
Halo Metrics Celebrates 25th Anniversary!
   By :  Ravinder
    Jan 29, 2013 11:49 AM
Like most Canadians we are happy the NHL is back, better late than never?  We couldn’t wait to get our hockey fix so just before Christmas Halo Metrics invited our customers out in Quebec to meet Guy Lafleur at his restaurant Bleu, Blanc, Rouge! It was fun to see grown men turn into little kids in front of the hockey legend.  Mr. Lafleur (a.k.a The Blond Demon) was wonderful and the whole team had a wonderful time.  Thanks to all of our customers for their support in 2012.  We are well into 2013 and look forward to what is on the horizon!
 
Halo Metrics team with Guy Lafleur
 
Halo customers with Guy Lafleur
   By :  Ravinder
    Jun 04, 2012 03:37 PM
Early in May Quebec Police made a major breakthrough by arresting 45 people and seizing 12,000 counterfeit bank cards in raids on an international fraud ring that cloned cards and pilfered cash from victims' accounts. 
 
Quebec Debit Card Ring Defrauds 22,000
 
 
A key part of this operation involved thieves stealing pay terminals or PIN Pad devices from local businesses.  This equipment was tampered with to record banking and PIN code information of unsuspecting shoppers. This was a well-coordinated effort where the criminals involved were cashing in millions from the fraud.  Authorities are urging businesses to physically lock down their PIN Pad terminals to the counter to help prevent this type of crime.
 
From experience we still hear from businesses that feel that they do not need to secure their PIN Pad devices.  Some believe that CHIP and PIN technology will prevent this.  Others believe their businesses are too small of a target and that there is always staff around to oversee the device.  The fact remains that criminals will take this equipment whenever and wherever they are able to.
 
To learn more about how vulnerable your business is for a PIN Pad theft attack take this survey.  For a free PIN Pad Theft Prevention Kit and to learn more about best practices to prevent this type of crime click here.
 
   By :  Ravinder
    Apr 24, 2012 02:40 PM
Over the last few months theft of Tide detergent has become a major issue at grocery and drug retail stores across the US.  Apparently thieves are finding it more lucrative to steal this name brand of detergent and sell it on the black market than it is to deal in illegal narcotics!
 
Click on the picture below to learn more about this story.  Send us your comments.  Are you finding that Tide detergent theft is an issue in Canada?
 
Tide Detergent Theft - Is this a problem in Canada?
   By :  Ravinder
    Apr 10, 2012 11:23 AM
Ever wonder how some of the heavy hitters in Canadian Retailing got their start? 

Over the years Halo Metrics has had the pleasure of interviewing some of these people for our newsletter called “The UPside”.   We thought we would share some of our past installments on our blog for your reading pleasure!

So how did you get your start? 

The UPside  - Volume 3 – Issue 1

Paul Fancellu, Director of Loss Prevention & Security

During my school years, I began selling shoes as a part time sales associate to help pay for my studies. Back then the company size was approximately 45 stores. I became interested in the owner’s way of operating the business and what he was saying about here being an opportunity to move up and grow with the company. I continued in my studies went to college in commerce and business administration, and then began at a full time position. Rapidly I went from assistant manager to store manager for 4 years, moved and lived elsewhere twice for the company. Then I was promoted to District Manager for another 4 years and up to National Sales Director for 10 years. Fantastic experience traveled across Canada and worked with incredible people which I am so proud of.


Then I was challenged with a change, a change in which today I strongly believe is the best move I made so far in my career. At that time, our Vice President of Operations asked me to manage and restructure the Asset Management department, which included the inventory and the security departments. Before long, the insurance claims department was added to my responsibilities as Asset Management Director.

The UPside – Volume 3 – Issue 2

Winners Logo

 

 

 

Ron Owczar is a veteran of the retail industry with 30 years’ experience in the Retail Loss Prevention field. He is Vice President of Loss Prevention at Winners Merchants International (WMI), with banners such as Winners, HomeSense, and StyleSense.

In 1979, I attended Seneca College’s law enforcement program.  During the second year I started at Eaton’s as part-time Store Detective. After college, I transitioned into a full time Store Detective position at Eaton’s. I then moved into the world of private investigations, as I took a position as a Private Investigator at Whitehall Bureau of investigations in Toronto. In 1982 I re-entered the Retail Loss Prevention field when I moved to Calgary, where I worked at Woodward’s, a chain of department stores. I worked at Woodward’s for 13 years, in progressive positions. I started my career at Woodward’s as a Store Detective, and then moved up to an Internal Investigator, then to Regional LP Manager, and finally Corporate LP Manager. In 1992, as Woodward’s was preparing to close all of its stores, a friend suggested joining Winners as a possible forward career step. I had the opportunity to grow through two major Canadian Retailers, both with mature Loss Prevention departments. I had never experienced a startup program until I commenced working at Winners. When I joined Winners in May of 1992, the company had only 9 stores and no LP department. Today, WMI, with its three banners has over 300 stores in Canada and the LP department consists of approximately 130 associates.

The UPside – Volume 3 – Issue 3

Forzani Group Logo

Bill Argue is a 26 year veteran of the retail industry in the Retail Loss Prevention field. Currently, he is the Director of Corporate Loss Prevention for the Forzani Group Ltd., the largest sporting goods life style retailer in Canada.

After spending 15 years on the Ontario Provincial Police, I decided I wanted to make a career change and I ventured into Corporate Loss Prevention. I joined The Oshawa Group Ltd. as the Director of Loss Prevention for the Ontario Division and was subsequently promoted to Corporate Vice President of Loss Prevention where I was then responsible for providing services to all divisions in Canada.  When the Oshawa Group Ltd. sold to Sobeys, I operated my own investigation/consulting business and provided Loss Prevention consulting services to a variety of industries including retail, industrial and health care facilities where my company built full security systems. Five years ago, I joined The Forzani Group Ltd. as Director of Corporate Loss Prevention.


The UPside – Volume 4 – Issue 1

Home Hardware Logo

Steve Shaugnessy, Store Design Manager for Home Hardware. Steve has a 16 year history with the company.


Years ago, Steve started at the store level with the Woolworths Manager Training program before migrating to Canadian Tire, looking for a management level opportunity. He moved on eventually to Cashway Building Center. Store design was something he fell into.  He started as a Home Hardware store planner, working at redesigning stores, layouts, and improving the shopper experience. At one point, the Store Planning Department and the Visual Merchandising Department were amalgamated into one new department called Store Design where he’s been ever since.


He currently deals with 1063 stores across the country. His department focuses on revitalizing existing stores, dealing with new facilities and adapting them to the Home Hardware look. No two Home Hardware stores are exactly the same. Home Hardware is a dealer owned cooperative system, where the owners of the company are the dealers themselves. The stores look similar to the others but every dealer is capable of inputting their own strength and personality into their business.

The UPside – Volume 2 – Issue 2

During our 20th corporate anniversary Cheryl Gillott (President/Owner) reminisced about how Halo Metrics began with her father starting the business from the family garage:


24 years ago (August 8/88), Bill Gillott started the company when he imported one product line into Canada, “warehousing it” in a self-storage complex. From the basement of his home, salesman that he was, each day he would cold-call retailers and then, when he got an order, run to the storage unit to pick up the goods and hand deliver them. His first order was from The Bay downtown, as I recall the story. Funnily enough the first customer I ever met, almost 10 years later, was Bob Ellis (then LP Director at The Bay) and his advice was “your father has built a good thing here, don’t screw it up”. I took his words to heart. Listen to your customer, give them what they need when they need it, and stand behind your promises. Pretty simple stuff. 


We have grown from that home-based business to one with four offices/two warehouses across the country and a strong team focused on meeting the needs of the retailer.

 
   By :  Ravinder
    Jan 30, 2012 12:23 PM
What’s new at CES?  What is the latest gadget that’s going to revolutionize the world?  Those are the typical questions one gets after visiting CES.  Well there were a lot of enhancements on products but nothing revolutionary as the tablet invasion of 2011.  2012 looks to be the year of how the tablet integrates with the rest of your consumer electronics including smart phones, TV’s, and even appliances.   
 
Halo Visits CES - Sony P TabletTablets of different sizes and shapes were on display including the Galaxy Note (is it a phone or a tablet?) and the Sony Tablet P which folds up compactly so you can put it in your pocket!  Of course after tablet explosion of 2011 you get the accessories boom of 2012.  Every imaginable way you can carry, protect, and connect to your tablet was on display.  
 
Integration and interaction was another theme this year.  I saw a lot of demos of people playing virtual soccer, playing virtual musical instruments or having virtual kung fu battles.  This theme was big for gaming and spilled over into recognition controls for TV’s and such.
Speaking of TV’s looks like Samsung is cornering the market on super thin monitors.  OLED and LED TV’s are getting bigger and thinner. It’s amazing how manufacturers can pack such a brilliant screen into what seems like a paper thin display?  
 
 
Some cool gadgets I came across include a demonstration of the AR Drone 2.0.  Of course this hovercraft is controlled by your iPhone, iPad, iWhatever with a free downloadable app.  This thing has amazing control and in the demo they were showing off 2 Drones flying in perfect synchronization.  
 
CES seems to pose some interesting challenges and opportunities for retailers.  First off how much of this new technology will eventually make it to Canada?  I’ve gone to past CES events and saw a cool new phone and it took a year and half for it to show up in Canada.  Some of it never makes it to retail.
 
Next, how best to demonstrate and show all the new voice and touch interactivity now available in various CE products.  You need room to for customers to physically move around and see how their movement gets translated to video games or other motion control systems.  How do you show your customers how you can start watching a movie on your smart phone sitting on the bus to school, pause it, pick up on your tablet later in the day, pause, and finally finish it off on your super thin LCD LED smart TV at home?
 
What’s great about the consumer electronics category is that it is ever changing and innovating.  What’s challenging about the consumer electronics category is that it is ever changing and innovating.  Oh well.  I guess that’s what keeps it interesting!
 
Take a look below at some of the videos captured at CES 2012:
 
 
 
 
   By :  Cheryl
    Dec 13, 2011 12:34 PM
Here we are again, coming to the end of another exciting year of challenges and opportunities.  We are so appreciative of the relationships we enjoy with the individuals who make Canadian retailers successful.  We know how hard you work, and we hope you know we are right there with you. 
 
We have made this year’s memorial donation to Parkinson’s, in the founder of Halo Metrics name Bill Gillott, as always, and thank you for supporting us in that.
 
We hope you enjoy our holiday card attached below.  Wishing you a safe and Happy Holiday season, and a very Happy New Year!
  
   By :  Ravinder
    Dec 02, 2011 03:04 PM
Halo Metrics is excited to announce the launch of our newly redesigned Web site, which goes live today, Monday November 28th, 2011 and is located at the same address: www.halometrics.com
 
The Halo brand speaks to protecting the experience of retail shoppers.  We wanted to extend that thought of experience protection to our new website. 
Visitors are now able to navigate through our product assortment using a more graphical interface.  It’s much easier to see and find what you are looking for.  We have included quick and easy access product selector tools as well.  Just click on the red Halo shopping bag on the right side of the website.  You can use the general product selector, keeper selector or the PIN Pad security selector.
 
Our public store has been expanded with the widest assortment of PIN Pad security available online in Canada!  The PIN Pad selector will help you narrow down the choices to something that will work in your retail environment.  From there you are just a few clicks away from making a purchase.
 
Registered Halo website users have the option to gain access to a wider assortment of security solutions and technical support and other promotions.  As a registered user you also have the option to make payments on account using purchase orders.
 
Halo Metrics will be updating its blog page regularly as well.  Visit this section frequently for new content about the international and domestic tradeshows we exhibit at and attend; interviews with loss prevention leaders; and other information about Halo and the retail industry.
 
The new website offers access to our social media platform so feel free to “share” product information or blog content with your friends and colleagues.  You can also post your comments on our website as well in our blog section.
 
The Halo Metrics website has more videos as well.  Some of these videos are instructional and offer technical support while others are informational. Altogether it is a much richer user experience.  Feel free to contact us with any feedback you have about the new website. 
 
Halo Metrics Inc.
 
   By :  Ravinder
    Dec 02, 2011 02:46 PM
In a hair roots movement the men of Halo Metrics have come together for one epic cause.  To raise funds for male prostate cancer research and to grow the manliest mo’ of all time!
 
Led by team captain Pete Henry we set out to raise $1000 for cancer research.  It was fun, it was itchy, and some of the mo’s turned out a bit creepy but it was all for charity.   At the end of the day the team raised $2650.00 for prostate cancer research.  Thank you to all of our friends, family, partners, and customers who helped us along the way.
 
Check out some of the pictures of our manly men and their various mo’s!  For more information about Movember and Prostate Cancer Canada visit this website.
 
Halo Metrics  mo' team Mississauga Halo Metrics - Dave Bellemare - Movember
 
Halo Metrics - Andy Lai - Movember picture Halo Metrics - Ric Locke - Movember Picture
 
 
   By :  Ravinder
    Oct 05, 2011 11:43 AM
the halo design experience logoOn September 15th & 16th Halo Metrics launched The Halo Design Experience at the Canadian Wireless Tradeshow in Toronto.  This event was created to showcase innovation, design, and security integrated into fixture concepts for retail use.  The end goal was to create a seamless concept that inspired interactivity and a fully open shopping experience. 

Several partners collaborated to bring this concept to life.  Halo Metrics provided the security, interactive digital media solutions, and consulted on the integration of this equipment based on customer needs.  Comas Manufacturing Group provided the fixture design and construction.  RIM, Skull Candy, & WIND Mobile provided live merchandise for the display.

We worked with WIND Mobile to understand typical retail challenges and came up with ideas that would be implementable at store level.  Some areas we decided to focus on included:
 
  1. Creation of a connectivity display.  In this display the goal was to show customers how different data devices would interact via WIFI connectivity.
  2. Show powered up cell phones with cross merchandising of accessories.  This was meant to allow full access to live powered demos of devices with the opportunity to increase impulse sales on accessories. 
  3. Create a  feature display with a large touchscreen panel.  The content would be triggered by lifting live cell phones on display.
  4. Create an inline display with smaller touch screens and digital media triggered by phones on display.
  5. Tablet displays.  Because tablets have been such a hot item for 2011 we put out several solutions that powered up, displayed, and secured tablets.
Putting together an integrated solution based on the needs of different stakeholders with the ultimate goal of providing the best possible shopping experience can be daunting.  But that is what we did with this showcase.  The response was terrific as the attendees were impressed with the overall look of the displays.
  
Watch for upcoming blog entries on the different concepts that were created where we will go into further detail with each idea.
 
Halo Design Experience
 
 
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