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Charlene Lawrence | Future-proof your business - from crisis to opportunity

Charlene Lawrence | Future-proof your business - from crisis to opportunity
14-10-22 / Charlene Lawrence

Charlene Lawrence | Future-proof your business - from crisis to opportunity

The past couple of years have presented their fair share of unexpected challenges, particularly for businesses, who have had to embrace new ways of working in light of repeated lockdowns and scarce electricity supply. Now more than ever before, risk management has become a critical tool for enterprises looking to navigate increasingly unpredictable circumstances, and many have opted to tap into the experience of insurance brokers in order to identify opportunities that enable them to thrive rather than simply survive.  

Risk management advice has become a critical value-add to insurance, and despite the convenience of self-service insurance options, many commercial clients continue to rely on their relationships with brokers who, thanks to their key industry insights and thorough understanding of the client's business, are able to provide important guidance in periods of difficulty, and to identify opportunities that enable enterprises to stay relevant. Brokers are also well positioned to future-proof businesses in an ever-changing landscape, anticipating challenges they’re likely to encounter based on Industry trends.

While short-term insurance has come a long way and is generally quite straightforward, the commercial insurance space remains more complex. The challenge that clients often face when going directly to the insurer is that insurers don’t always have adequate insight of the clients' situation, making it more difficult for them to identify potential risks and to adequately address and pre-empt possible queries.

However, brokers are able to tap into a wealth of industry and experience, and to take the time to thoroughly go through the benefits, risks and considerations regarding cover, offering key risk management and insurance advice.  This expert counsel is the result of a constant monitoring of trends, risks and changing legislation, and can prove invaluable in turbulent times, as businesses are able to quickly adapt and identify key opportunities in real time.

Brokers with in-depth industry knowledge and a keen understanding of sector-specific risks are particularly sought-after by commercial clients, who don't always take into account the seemingly irrelevant details that might compromise future claims. For example, a client with an extensive delivery network might not be aware of the impact that driver behaviour might have on their existing cover.

For instance, should a driver be found to be without the correct permit, over the legal alcohol limit or to have left a vehicle unattended or unlocked, any resulting loss or damage could be mitigated by having an appropriate insurance policy in place. If the employer can prove that any breach of the law took place without your consent and that adequate measures were put in place to ensure that drivers were aware of their obligations and responsibility, your liability could be significantly lessened with the right type of liability cover.

And that's where a broker steps in, guiding the client and in some cases introducing processes and training initiatives that enable them to mitigate risk across the business. For instance, a broker might implement more thorough educational programmes to better train drivers and advise them regarding potential hijacking hotspots and other real-time risks. They are also trained to identify potential shortcomings, such as a lack of regular health checks, which are critical when it comes to ensuring that drivers are provided with adequate treatment in the event of chronic illnesses or other issues that might affect concentration or behaviour.

Brokers have also proven invaluable in helping clients to bridge the digital divide over the past couple of years, as many have turned online in an effort to stay relevant and reach a more tech-savvy clientele. Given the dynamic nature of the digital environment, brokers have played a critical role in guiding businesses through the process of technological adaptation, offering expert advice on everything from cyber-security to consumer privacy.

With the help of trusted brokers, many companies have managed to successfully circumnavigate the complicated set of circumstances that have defined the past couple of years, relying on regular expert input to reduce risk and leverage emerging trends and legislative developments.

As a leading insurer, we continue to foster relationships with brokers so as to better service commercial clients and offer greater value across risk management, policy management and the claims process. In so doing, we're able to offer businesses the tools they need to operate their way and to achieve success even in uncertain times.

*This article was written by Charlene Lawrence, General Manager: Brokers at MiWay Brokers Insurance.

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