Small Businesses Can Use Technology To Prevent Losses and Save On Insurance
Smart phones and tablet computers are not just for texting, talking and watching videos. An increasing number of software applications (apps) for these devices, and other technologies not involving mobile devices, help businesses prevent losses and cut their insurance costs.
Mobile devices can now connect to business security systems. Many security equipment vendors offer apps that give business owners instant information when they’re away from the premises. For example, the system may send a text alert to a smartphone if a security camera picks up sudden movements. Others may stream videos from security cameras to the smartphone, enabling the owner or personnel to keep an eye on the premises during off hours.
This early information can help business owners limit the size of losses browse around here. For example, a system might send a text alert when it detects a leak in the building’s plumbing system. Once alerted, the building owner can shut off the water remotely or in person, thus limiting the extent of the damage. Video recordings that can be downloaded to mobile devices can also help businesses recover stolen property.
A coffee manufacturer in Portland, Oregon implemented a system like this. Weeks after installation, it recorded video of a burglar stealing thousands of dollars in equipment. The owners downloaded the video, sent it to the local police, and posted it on social media channels. The video produced a full criminal investigation.
Insurers will compete for the businesses that use remote security systems. This is particularly true for businesses that own or sell items attractive to thieves, such as jewelry, electronics, medicine, or certain building materials such as copper.
Businesses can also reduce losses and insurance premiums by using telematics technology with their vehicles. These devices transmit real-time information about how a vehicle is being used. They capture information such as driving and stopping speed, time, and location. Businesses can use this data to monitor how their drivers are performing and identify training and incentive issues.
For example, drivers consistently exceeding posted speed limits may feel pressured to reach their destinations as fast as possible, either for pay or evaluation reasons. The result may be more frequent and severe auto accidents. With this information, management might decide to reward drivers for a certain number of accident-free miles. This should reduce accident frequency and lower the business’s auto insurance premiums.
GPS technology can also help businesses track stolen vehicles and trailers, so an insurance claim will be either unnecessary or recoverable. Also, if a driver has an accident or medical event, GPS enables the business to locate the vehicle and driver immediately and dispatch emergency responders to the scene more quickly. This improves driver safety, takes better care of employees, and may reduce Workers’ Compensation costs.
Some insurers offer discounts to businesses that implement GPS tracking. Telogis reports that premium discounts range from 18 to 33 percent.
Technology is becoming an ever more important part of our daily lives. These apps and devices show that it can have large benefits for businesses.
We know that running a small business means you have to continually educate yourself on matters you hadn’t even considered before starting your business. Let us help you make informed decision about your business insurance needs. Our licensed agents specialize in cyber liability insurance, give us a call today at 844-325-9516.