Bertus Visser, Chief Executive of Distribution at PSG Insure
Some businesses have not seen much growth over the past year, due to ongoing pandemic-related restrictions and cash-strapped consumers. A subdued economic landscape often leads to cost-cutting initiatives within companies, which in turn can lead to increased exposure to risk, further threatening the bottom line. Cutting insurance costs is best approached with care, and this is exactly where financial advisers can add the most value to their clients.
The true value of advisers
In a year marred by escalating risks – think Covid-19 disruptions and the recent spate of riots and looting – there is no better time to unpack the value a broker can add in ensuring your business is sufficiently covered. In times like these, when risks are rapidly evolving and the insurable risk landscape has been altered significantly, insurers are developing new products and adapting policy features to provide relevant cover while ensuring their own sustainability. Advisers are best placed to provide valuable advice to their clients amid this changing landscape, as they work closely with insurers and know how the market is changing, and they possess intricate knowledge of evolving risk exposures.
Advice, risk analysis and assisting with correctly processing insurance claims are all valuable services that advisers offer and may have a bigger impact on your business than you may think. What’s more, an adviser will do all the legwork to find the most affordable insurance products that best match their clients’ needs. Following a thorough needs analysis, they can also help tailor cover to match exactly what is needed. It’s important to remember that the cheapest cover is not necessarily the right fit and usually means certain covers have been excluded. The result is that your business is not comprehensively covered and is left with unforeseen risk exposure.
A good adviser will negotiate on their clients’ behalf with insurers when dealing with a complicated claim, ensuring that all the correct processes are followed and that the required support documentation is provided. This will ensure a smooth claims process – something that you don’t get when going direct. Securing the right level of cover for a business’s unique risk exposure, handling claims efficiently and helping clients avoid claim rejections could indeed be some of the most valuable services advisers provide to their clients. Another added bonus is that they can often negotiate better premiums after helping you to manage your insurance and your business’s risk management practices effectively.
Silent killers – when you don’t know
It’s no exaggeration that advisers are a company’s first line of defence against potentially catastrophic risks – including risk exposures that many business owners may never even consider, such as:
- Public liability
- Product liability
- Employers’ liability
- Business interruption
- Professional indemnity
- Business property coverage
- Cyber risk
Long-term relationships are key for long-term success
The value of building a long-term relationship with an adviser that knows your business and is able to provide specific advice for your unique situation, also advising you through change, is priceless. Working closely with an adviser ensures peace of mind knowing that you are getting expert, objective advice on how to protect your business from events that could cripple it. This requires looking ahead and thinking of all those ‘what if’ moments that advisers know can happen, as they have likely seen it before.
A professional adviser stays on top of legislative changes and will update your company’s insurance policies to ensure it is covered against any potential legal issues. Advisers make recommendations based on knowledge, experience and expertise, thereby streamlining the decision-making process. And the longer they have a relationship with your business, the better they become at helping you with the most suitable advice.
With this in mind, think hard about the real value of your adviser the next time you need the focus to shift to cost savings at your company.