Posted on: 21 January 2022

As we start the new year, many people will have set resolutions to achieve personal goals throughout the year ahead, but have you considered resolutions for the management of your business? A business should always have risk management policies in place to tackle most obstacles that ultimately help it to become resilient and dynamic.

So, as we zoom into 2022, we thought it would be a fantastic opportunity to start the new year by reviewing what business owners can do to set some resolutions for the year ahead.

We all know new year resolutions can sometimes be hard to keep, in fact it has been reported that 80% of resolutions fail, so, we have suggested one resolution each quarter which makes it easier to review and adapt throughout the year.

Q1 – Focus on better Risk Management

Creating a culture of better risk management will benefit your business in the long run. Practicing this will help you in recognising hazards before they become a disruption for your business. Unhealthy risk management could lead to higher liabilities, less profits and poor goodwill among competitors.

Therefore, utilise the first three months of the year to analyse your assets such as property, machinery, and people. Then have a step-by-step plan to ensure the safety of all such assets through risk management tools such as CCTV cameras, alarm systems and a complete health & safety inspection along with fire safety checks.

Additionally, to manage risk well, it is necessary to be transparent with your employees and customers. If transparent communication does not take place, then it will be harder for your stakeholders to trust and believe in your business objectives. Achieve this by active and frequent communication at all levels of the business, which outlines your strategies for achieving goals.

Hybrid and remote working, introduced more commonly as a consequence of COVID-19, will continue as a way of working for many businesses. Ensure that your employees working from home are not susceptible to cyber-crime by educating them on potential phishing and other such scams.

These active measures will help your business reduce risks and demonstrate good business practices that may make your business more attractive to insurance underwriters. As insurers see businesses with lower risks more favourable, you can achieve more comprehensive and competitive cover from the marketplace.

Q2 – Review your Business Continuity Plan

After reviewing better risk management practices in your first quarter, we have selected the business continuity plan as an indispensable resource that you should focus on during the second quarter.

The British Insurance Brokers Association (BIBA) stated that 96% of organisations with insight on business continuity believed that having a strategy in motion would keep them operating. Furthermore, they believed it would lower the expenses that the company would suffer if they had somehow failed, or it would lower the cost of the disruption.

A business continuity plan (BCP) should contain working elements that are critical towards the functioning of your business during disasters such as floods, storms, fires, and pandemics.

The working elements of a BCP can include:

  • Setting up an emergency communication system to inform the stakeholders of the business with backup contact information stored in a safe location outside of the business premises.
  • Back up IT (Information Technology) infrastructure which is safe and dependable for your employees to access confidential information.
  • There should be requisites in place to ensure enough staff are available after the disaster or if a business-threatening incident has taken place.
  • An essential part of the plan would be to establish backup suppliers and recover essential stock.
  • Check that your Business Interruption Insurance cover is sufficient and fit for purpose. An insurance broker such as Premierline can work with you to ensure you have the right insurance cover in place.
  • Finally, practice this plan using a mock scenario which will establish that it works and review your BCP every six months.

Q3 - Review Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Goals

Reviewing ESG goals in the third quarter should be your priority as a business. The impact of businesses on the environment and people has become increasingly relevant over time.

Significantly, the United Nations has developed seventeen sustainable development goals (SDGs) for businesses to follow and abide by. These goals are tasked to ensure all businesses follow a fair and ethical code of practice which respects the environment and people involved in the business.

Therefore, make your environmental, social and governance (ESG) goals align with the sustainable development goals (SDGs) provided by the United Nations. The ESG states that it should be your business’s duty to respect the environment and reduce its carbon footprint each year. For instance, by using methods such as circular economy to reduce waste and recycle effectively.

Thereafter, the business should understand how it affects the people involved in its operation, through considering fair wages, diversity & inclusion, and anti-corruption policies.

Your business should also promote transparent governance and internal policies which benefit the environment and the business stakeholders.

Additionally, according to Willis Towers Watson, 92% of consumers are more likely to trust a corporation that promotes social and environmental issues. Furthermore, 58% of employees examine a corporation's environmental and social obligations, before deciding to work for them.

Q4 - Preparing for your Insurance Renewal

We have placed this as an aim for Q4 so that you can prepare for your insurance renewal in the following year, however it may be prudent to start preparing for your insurance renewal sooner, depending on when your renewal is due.

In order to do so, follow these four simple steps:

  1. Speak to your broker in good time before renewal - Do not wait for your renewal invite, arrange a call with your broker to discuss your renewal options. Advisors at Premierline will be able to guide you through the renewal process and provide recommendations tailored to the business. Getting ahead of the process early will allow for additional time, should you wish to search the market again or complete a new proposal for insurers.
  2. Make the effort to explain any claims at renewal - Even some of the most cautious companies will face claims and insurance underwriters know this. So, if your company utilises the opportunity to explain why a claim occurred and what steps it has taken since to avoid it repeating again, it might have a favourable impact on your cover, terms & conditions and even your premium.
  3. Disclose any material facts - You have a legal obligation to present your risk in a fair manner under the Insurance Act of 2015. To fulfil this obligation, you must keep your broker and insurer informed of any major changes to your business throughout the policy period. Questions you can ask yourself can be:Have you changed or updated any of your office assets? Have you changed the location of your business? Do you have new products or services that do not fit within the current business description given to the insurer? Do you have any new claims or losses whether insured or not?
  4. Review cover and limits - You need to make sure that your policies continue to meet your requirements. For example, cover limits set 12 months ago may no longer be appropriate in some of the circumstances below, for example:
  • You hired more employees/increased wage roll
  • Your turnover has changed
  • Your business activities have changed

So, with this we conclude our new year business resolution checklist. Premierline offers insurance brokering services for UK businesses ranging from micro-SMEs to larger businesses with more complex insurance needs.

Our experienced advisors can complete a market search to arrange the right insurance solution to meet your insurance requirements. Get in touch to know more.

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