Several Ways to Lower Costs, Minimize Risk, and Maximize Coverage in 2023
By James Barr, Vice President
With the end of another year fast approaching, the “insurance elves” at Gompers, Cornish & Barr are hard at work this holiday season, shopping for the best possible rates and coverage options for our commercial and personal lines clients.
Unsurprisingly (if you have been following our content installments throughout the year), we are seeing premium increases pretty much across the board. In part due to the effects of persistent inflation, rising claims and litigation, and circumstances unique to each insured, rates are rising — more so than the traditional annual premium increases.
It’s never enjoyable to pass along news of premium increases to our clients, which is why we are working so diligently to control and/or reverse these trends to the greatest extent possible. With a renewal likely in your company’s future, here is a round-up of recommendations we have made this past year, along with some “New Year’s Resolutions” to consider in order to counter rising costs in 2023.
How to Prepare for Policy Renewal Season
While premium increases are prevalent in virtually every form of insurance, we are seeing the greatest rate increases in Directors & Officers Liability, Commercial Property, Cyber Liability and Employment Practices Liability. We covered many of these in great detail in 2022. Here is a reference list of some of the best ways to combat rising costs, both in terms of rising premiums and minimizing the costs of claims experience:
Creative Plan Design. In August, we took a close look at how innovative plan design and strategic creativity can help mitigate rising property insurance premiums. With the dramatic rise in building, materials and labor costs, we emphasized how important it is to make sure your policy’s replacement costs are keeping pace with inflation. Renewal time is the best time to reevaluate to see if there are any gaps in coverage due to persistent inflation.
Double Check Your Coverages and Limits. Early on, in May, when it appeared that inflation would be around for a while, we urged policyholders to work with their agents to make sure coverages and limits were up-to-date and re-audited. Renewal time is another great opportunity to do just that, if you haven’t already.
Protect Your Company Against Rising Cyber Crimes. In March, we underscored the importance of Cyber Liability Insurance, one of the aforementioned categories of insurance experiencing rising premiums. Review this article to learn the three important steps every company should take to avoid a costly cyber attack.
Four Ways to Reduce Claims, Lower Costs, and Get People Back to Work. Regarding rising Workers Compensation costs, we provided guidance on how companies can reduce the incidence and costs of workers comp claims. Use this as your guide to proactively reduce costly losses in human resources through both insurance design and employment policies and procedures.
Lower the Cost and Risk of Distracted Driving. For companies that operate vehicle fleets, in June we offered our tips for how to embrace and implement telematics to dramatically reduce injury and lower rates. Insurance companies are so inclined to embrace telematics that some have established formal partnerships with specific telematics solution providers, teaming up to encourage adoption and provide significant discounts to those who enroll.
Adopting Policies and Procedures to Lower Costs, Increase Productivity
Of course, there’s much more employers can do to lower costs than specifically designing their insurance plans with strategy and innovation. Oftentimes, planning ahead does the most to reduce costs, downtime and risk while maximizing coverage and employee productivity.
We love to partner with employers and human resources professionals to design and share best practices to keep the workforce happy, healthy, motivated and appreciated. While many of these policies and procedures pay off intrinsically, almost all of them have the residual benefit of lowering premiums and claims costs as well.
As we turn the corner into 2023, here are three in-depth discussions of ideas that your company may consider as “New Year’s Resolutions,” if you haven’t implemented them already:
Make Sure Your Employment Practices are Keeping Pace with Your Hiring Incentives. In the rush to win the talent wars and to serve clients in a time when employers are already stretched thin and overworked, it’s important that today’s new employment dynamic not be overlooked. Any changes to existing terms of employment must be accurately reflected in the company’s employment practices, policies and documents. This article reviewed four specific things that might need to be updated and verified.
How to Reverse the Rising Costs of Doing Business in the Return-to-Work Transition. This article offered a six-point checklist to make sure your company was limiting its exposures as the remote workforce began to return to the office.
New Employment Realities Demand New Approaches to Insurance. We had a new work environment thrust upon us suddenly and without warning in 2020. Now that we better understand the risks, the costs and the implications of “the new normal,” we are far better suited to proactively and strategically take measures to mitigate both costs and risk alike.
Consider these resources both your year-end checklist, as well as your reminder to take the new year as your opportunity to review, reconsider and reassess your employment practices, policies and procedures. Not only should people have New Year’s Resolutions…employers should too!