Getting to Know You: Behind the Scenes of the Risk Review Process

Today is National Get to Know Your Customers Day, observed on the third Thursday of every quarter. We’re taking this opportunity to take a look behind the scenes at the work our brokers do to get to know our customers in the form of Risk Reviews.

Chris Norton, Client Executive at Pound Gates talks us through the risk review process, what he looks for when getting to know you, and the benefits this process can have on your bottom line.

Chris, what is a risk review and when would you carry one out?

A risk review is an information gathering exercise to identify risks that can affect a business and then apply that to a review of their current insurance arrangements. This applies to both new and existing clients.

There are two key parts to the review, the information that we determine through desktop research and the results of an open conversation, usually over coffee, with the client or potential client.

We are looking to find out as much information as possible about the business itself, its core activities, potential financial and physical exposures and ultimately offer a fresh pair of eyes to notice any areas where the current policies are not meeting the needs of the business. The information collected builds your risk profile and used to present to insurers.

What type of information do you look for?

I start with an open mind and ask the person to tell me about the business in their own words, and where they foresee risks and exposures. We look at the physical, financial and moral risks along with claims history to uncover trends or future risk and solutions to prevent by way of risk management. I’m aiming to understand:

  • What the business does and how they operate
  • Identify physical risks, such as fire, theft or motor incidents
  • Understand what is the financial impact of losing a large contract or fluctuating exchange rates?
  • Legal liabilities – based on their business type, what is the likelihood of injuring others and what measures have been taken to minimise this?
  • Approach to Health & Safety – do they have adequate methods implemented for their staff and the general public?
  • Staff – are robust HR systems and policies in place that can help to minimise the risk of disgruntled staff taking action?

All of this information helps to build a picture of what exposures could hurt the business.

How is this information used?

I’m able to create a risk profile for the business, which is then reviewed against the existing insurance schedule or the demands and need of a new business entity. We aim to take a fresh perspective and see if the needs of the business are being fully met. The more we can find out about them, the more information we can give to insurers, which will have an impact on the premium.

There are lots of things that can be missed if the right questions aren’t asked, and that comes down to the experience of the broker. At Pound Gates, we hold the prestigious title of ‘Chartered Insurance Broker’ from the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII). Chartered status is an exclusive title, only awarded to firms that meet rigorous criteria relating to professionalism and capability. All Chartered Insurance Brokers commit to the CII’s Code of Ethics, reinforcing the highest standards of professional practice in their business dealings.

What can companies do to reduce their risk exposures?

We can help in three significant ways by providing:

  • Advice based on our own expertise
  • Access to a wide library of policies, planning tools, etc.
  • Access to our partner network who are experts in their respective fields

We don’t see insurance as a transactional sale, stopping just at insurance. We seek to provide a risk management solution and go the whole way to cover your exposures. We listen, advise and build trust with our clients.

What’s next?

If you are interested in reviewing your current insurance arrangements, with a no-obligation risk review, contact us and we’ll be happy to arrange a coffee to discuss your specific needs.


Read Chris Norton's story of delivering Meals on Wheels for client Aspect Living