Insurance protection is a fundamental purchase for any organisation. The essence of insurance is a simple means by which you are able to transfer risk to an insurance company that you cannot live with, in return for paying an annual premium.
This is absolutely not the case. The independent schools sector has its own unique exposures and as a consequence the selection of your insurance provider needs to be made carefully to reflect:
- Does the insurer have a specialist knowledge of independent schools?
- Do they have a specifically designed insurance product for your school?
- What is their track record in the sector in terms of history, performance and consistency of pricing?
- How strong is their financial rating which in turn will reflect on their ability to pay claims quickly and fairly?
It is therefore imperative that whilst cost is always an important consideration you balance this with these elements.
Good risk management is a fundamental, it is more often than not either a statutory, regulatory or governance requirement and therefore cannot be avoided. A well ordered risk management programme gives rise to a greater likelihood of business continuity and sustainable insurance costs. However, there is a historic problem in so far as most schools buy a range of service from various providers away from their insurance arrangements and rarely do insurers play an active role in the process, there is therefore a disconnect in the cycle. The consequence is:
- Insurers don’t see the standards of risk management practice.
- They therefore don’t reward good practice.
- They do not contribute to the cost of the services you buy despite beneﬁting indirectly through reduced claims cost and therefore more profit.
- Your statutory duty in relation to disclosure to your insurers is more challenging for you.
- Fragmented risk services and the insurance purchase is far less economical.