United Natural Foods, Inc. Scales Case Management with Ontic

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The situation

After an acquisition that nearly doubled the company's size, the corporate security team at United Natural Foods, Inc. (UNFI) began training leaders to recognize concerning behaviors and signals related to potential workplace violence risks. The new awareness, coupled with heightened internal and external stress factors, led to a significant increase in reported incidents and the need for centralized POI tracking and investigations.

Patching together research and investigations using shared spreadsheets and paper and pencils was not addressing the increase in activity. As a corporate security and asset protection team of four covering over 50 distribution centers and multiple corporate office locations, they quickly recognized the need to scale case management with a flexible digital solution.

The solution

With Ontic, the team actively monitors threats and manages investigations into workplace violence concerns to ensure actions are taken based on data-driven decisions and that trending patterns are closely monitored.

In addition to workplace violence prevention, the team investigates fraud and theft activities in and around their distribution centers and corporate offices. With the flexibility to customize the Ontic Platform and the extensive integrated research tools like TLO and court records, Steve Slyter, Sr. Director of Corporate Security and Asset Protection, can track and calculate cost avoidance and recovery.

The team conducts an average of 200 investigations in six months and provides quarterly reports to UNFI’s executive team. Knowing that their audience is business people, they know it’s important to demonstrate their business impact through measured results using key metrics.

UNFI’s expert usage of Ontic Platform reports and metrics have not only shown recovery savings, but the savings helped pay for the majority of their security department cost. They are now at an advantage to expand their program to make UNFI even safer, including loss prevention through process improvements and early fraud detection.

According to Rich Duehn, UNFI’s Corporate Security Manager, the team was originally attracted to Ontic for case management and threat monitoring. They quickly realized that Ontic could be used for much more and that the strength of the partnership is central to continued success. As their program has evolved, UNFI’s Corporate Security and Asset Protection team has leaned on their dedicated success team at Ontic to assist with platform customizations to support additional needs and to ensure that they can use even more platform features as their program matures.

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The metrics we track in Ontic and report on have supported the growth of our team from 4 to 16 because we can consistently show how our work mitigates workplace violence concerns before events occur.

Steve Slyter, Sr. Director of Corporate Security and Asset Protection


The outcome

Company-Wide Cost Savings
In 2022, their efforts resulted in about $2M in recovery and cost avoidance, tripling the figures from 2020. They are on track to surpass that savings in 2023.

Partnership to Enhance Capabilities
The security team relies on Ontic's dedicated success manager to help customize the platform to enhance their experience. In turn, they provide feedback that contributes to new innovation to support their growing program and beyond.

Cost Coverage for Security Department
Their use of the Ontic Platform yields savings and improves security, enabling team growth and program expansion for personnel safety, loss prevention and fraud detection.

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