Wednesday, April 3, 2013

True insurance value in snow removal













Anytime a snow-specific insurance prospect calls our office, the first question I ask them is if they are a SIMA member. If the answer is yes, I have a greater degree of confidence that this is a professional contractor serious about snow.

For the last five years SIMA has coordinated with some vetted, qualified insurance providers to help connect members with potential insurers in the US and Canada. This provides a great opportunity for current members to find insurance when they need it. We sat down with Sam Rolph, an Agent of American Family Insurance recently to ask how his insurance agency in the Chicago region helps SIMA members see more value in their snow insurance programs.

What is the first thing that happens when a SIMA member contacts you?
Anytime a snow-specific insurance prospect calls our office, the first question I ask them is if they are a SIMA member. If the answer is yes, I have a greater degree of confidence that this is a professional contractor serious about snow. I then offer any insurance advice and answer any questions at no charge to the member.

Can SIMA membership have an impact on their individual policy?
Since I’ve worked with SIMA and its members for so long, I have been able to show that SIMA members are good investments for our company. I’m proud that American Family Insurance nationally recognizes SIMA as a professional body which aids in the control of losses, due to the exposure to professional training and template contracts. This does help aid in the final value offered to the contractor seeking insurance.

What about Certified Snow Professionals?
A well-managed, established certification program is attractive to insurance providers. Certified Snow Professionals are a highly qualified set of individuals that we are interested in insuring. Depending on the company history, I would estimate that CSP’s insured by us receive underwriting credits that can lead to between 2%-15% reductions in price based on loss history and annual premiums. This includes our general and liability insurance, as well as our vehicle and fleet insurance products.

What other value do you see as a result of the relationship?
I think that SIMA membership is a great icebreaker, and it provides the prospect and I an opportunity to connect and begin building trust. This allows for a more specific discussion about their business and its current state, as well as their future goals. I can then help them see that a good insurance partner is more than just a quote, we are a risk management resource to them that can aid in contract language, liability management, and overall cost management. 

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