ExecutiveChronicles.com | Tips to Choosing the Right Commercial Insurance Broker | Every business needs a commercial insurance policy. And oftentimes with that need comes the need for a broker. As crazy as it sounds, picking a policy can even be easier than picking a broker.
Because there are so many brokers who all promise the best, picking a commercial insurance broker can be incredibly difficult.
Being a business owner is stressful enough without worrying about finding a commercial insurance broker that has your business’s best interests at heart. To make picking a commercial insurance broker a little easier for you, here are six tips to keep in mind.
Know What You Need
The very first step to finding the right commercial insurance broker is to have a good idea of what it is your business needs. After all, how will you know which broker is able to meet your needs if you don’t know what those needs are?
Now don’t think that you need to be a policy expert to do this. All you need to do is have a basic understanding of the commercial insurance needs your business has and what types of insurance will satisfy those needs.
For example, the majority of businesses need a general liability insurance policy and a business owners policy (BOP). But businesses that sell products to the general public will benefit from a public liability policy.
Shortlist Brokers in Your Area
A commercial insurance broker is someone who you’ll want to meet with often so make sure that the broker is based in or around your area. Trust is important when dealing with a broker, and trust is hard to build online.
There is no point in going with a broker that lives too far away and will not be able to meet with you in person. Start off your broker search with a quick Google search of firms or brokers in your area and make a short-list of those that meet your business’s needs.
Thoroughly Research them Before Setting Up a Meeting
Research the broker to ensure they have the proper certifications and licenses. Also read up about the broker online and keep your eyes peeled for any reviews left by previous & existing clients.
If you’re unable to find testimonies on your own, reach out to the broker and ask for the names & contact information of their clients who can provide a reference. If you can’t find testimonies or your own and the broker isn’t willing to point you in the right direction, eliminate them from your list of potentials.
Schedule a One-on-One Meeting
Once you’ve read up on the broker or received a referral, you can go ahead and schedule a one-on-one meeting with them. This is a great opportunity to test how accommodating and responsive the broker is to meeting requests, which is imperative going forward.
Set up a meeting for whenever you’d like but be sure to leave enough time for you to prep for the meeting. It’s also important to consider when you would normally like these face-to-face meetings to occur and make sure that the broker is available during this time. For example, would you prefer your meetings to take place at lunch time or after hours?
Test them During the Meeting
After scheduling your meeting, set aside some time to prep for it. Compile a list of questions to ask the broker and note how thoroughly he or she answers them. It’s also a good idea to throw in a few red herring questions that you know the answers to in order to make sure the answers they’re providing are correct.
Also pay attention to the broker’s mannerisms and body language. Never discredit your gut feeling. If you feel as though a broker isn’t being forthcoming or he or she is deflecting certain questions, then turn your search elsewhere.
Gauge Their Response Time
If the broker has passed your in-meeting tests and you feel confident awarding your business to them there is one final tip to making sure they’re the right choice: see how quickly they respond to and handle your requests.
Given that, by this point, you’re already leaning towards going with this broker, email them asking for a quote on what you’ll be needing. You should receive two email responses: one to confirm that they’ve received your request and one with the quote attached.
There are more than 4,000 commercial insurance brokers and agents in Australia, so you’ve got your work cut out for you to find the right one to handle your business needs.
Use the tips we’ve outlined above to single out the right broker for you. Then return to focusing on the core areas of your business knowing that your commercial insurance is being handled properly.
Do you have any tips to offer those who are looking for a new commercial insurance broker? Share them with us in the comments section below.