If you have your own business and are looking to put some insurance policies in place to protect it, you will no doubt have found out that there are more than a few options.
Two of the bigger decisions you will need to make when it comes to insurance for your business relate to whether to go with a broker or buy direct from an insurer, and whether to purchase your policies individually or as part of a business package.
Let’s have a look at the options around the making of these decisions.
Business packs vs. individual policies
As you may have noticed, the sheer number of insurance types that are relevant to small businesses can seem overwhelming — public and product liability, cyber, property, contents, machinery, plant and stock, business interruption to name just a few. Other policies that may beneeded for your business can include, but are not limited to money, statutory liability, employers liability, glass and motor vehicle cover.
Depending on the size and nature of your business, you may only need a couple of these insurance types or you may need a few. If it’s the latter, a business pack may be the most logical and cost-effective way to go.
A business pack policy will combine a number of business-related insurances into one policy. Most insurance companies offer public & products liability, general property, contents, machinery, plant and stock, and business interruption covers as standard in a business pack policy.
Then, depending on your needs, you can add some extras if you need to — such as machinery breakdown, glass, cyber, transit etc.
In general business pack policies are cost-effective but that is not always going to be the case. Some insurers have specialised rates for certain types of cover depending on occupation and there may be instances where more competitive premiums and/or better cover can be obtained by spreading the risks across different insurers.
If you’re unsure about what’s best for your business or what insurance types might be most pertinent to your situation then it may be best to talk to an insurance broker.
Using a broker vs. buying direct from an insurer
The role of a broker is to provide you with advice that is particular to your situation; At SHARE we particularly specialise in the SME market and deal with a variety of insurers who have suitable policies. In our Brokers role we will find and compare quotes on your behalf, will help guide you through the process, explain things about the policies on offer to you that you may not otherwise have noticed. We also are involved in managing the claim process for you should loss or damage occur.
Purchasing insurance policies direct from the insurer may in some instances mean cheaper premiums but of course you are restricted to the particular policies that that insurer issues. A Broker can check the whole market for you to ensure that you are getting the most appropriate cover for your particular needs.
While businesses can be similar, each business has unique challenges — what is right for your business may be entirely different to what another business needs, so don’t get too caught up in what everyone else is doing. Just do what’s best for you and your business. And we feel that the best way to do that is to let SHARE act as your Broker!