Is your business insurance a trick or a treat?
As a business owner, you probably know insurance and risk management should be top priority to ensure smooth operation of your company. However, insurance is a complex area and, as such, there are mistakes or oversights that might prove costly for your business.
We’ve made a list based on the most common omissions our experts regularly come across when reviewing the insurance of small or medium enterprises. So, say “no” to tricks and treat your company by following these business insurance tips.
1. Don’t neglect your business interruption coverage
Insurance experts estimate that Business Interruption Insurance is one of the most, if not the most, valuable cover available. Yet, it is often overlooked by business owners. Since Property Insurance only covers the cost of physical loss or damage and contents of a business in the event of a disaster, Business Interruption cover is invaluable in covering the loss of income while the permanent business location is being repaired.
Give yourself time to recover from a crisis and compensate for its financial impact on your business, being protected by business interruption coverage.
2. Don’t buy on price alone
There are so many purchasing decisions in our lives that we make based on price. Choosing business insurance shouldn’t be one of them.
Before deciding on the cheapest policy, it is important that you understand what it does or doesn’t cover. We recommend asking your broker to obtain quotes from multiple insurers. Then, review their proposals in detail. Wording, claims service and the types or amounts of coverage listed are important considerations that sometimes might be overlooked. Your broker can help you compare the different offerings and understand which coverage suits your business best.
3. Re-evaluate your needs as your business changes
As your business changes, so do your exposures. Perhaps you have expanded your product or service offerings, changed your premises, expanded to new markets or hired new employees. Does your business have any new vehicles or equipment that isn’t listed in your policy? Or maybe there are items in your cover that you don’t own anymore.
Whatever the change is, you need to make sure you notify your insurance broker. If you fail to do so, your business might not be covered adequately anymore.
Another important tip is not to wait for your renewal to update your broker on any changes that have taken place in your company. Talk to your broker regularly about your business plans. Letting your broker know will keep you properly protected, plus removing items you no longer own from your insurance can lead to a reduction in your premiums!
4. Read the terms and conditions
All insurance policies are subject to terms and conditions which are set out at quotation stage and in the policy. In the outside world T&Cs are usually overlooked, but in the business world it is your duty to read and understand these warranties and conditions. For example, your insurer might expect you to have an alarm in operation when the premises are left unattended. Failing to abide by those terms might lead to a claim being turned down or being unable to receive policy indemnity.
So, always double check that you understand what terms your insurers are applying and that you can comply with them. If you need any assistance, discuss your cover with your insurance broker and ask them to simplify any insurance language if you don’t understand it.
Always double check that you understand what terms your insurers are applying and that you can comply with them.
5. Choose the right broker
Finally, most business owners prefer to use an insurance broker for their business insurance. To get the most appropriate cover for your business, your choice of broker is important. It goes without saying that your broker should meet the specific needs of your business activity. Where possible, choose a broker who’s an expert in your industry. For example, if you are a wind farm operator, then you need a professional with proven track record in renewable energy insurance.
Also, your broker should be able to act as a business adviser. Find out if they can give you specialist advice on your business risks. And always make sure they will support you if and when you need to make claim.
So, treat yourself this Halloween…
When you run a business, always keep in mind that proper insurance should be top priority. And affording enough time to do the job right is crucial for your business growth.
To smoothly run your business, make sure you have business interruption coverage, check any changes in your business are reflected in your policy, comply with your insurer’s T&Cs, go beyond price and have a trusted insurance broker by your side to help you with all of the above.
Follow this advice when buying your business insurance and you should stay clear from any horror stories.