The ongoing lockdown in South Africa forced a number of businesses to reconsider how they do business.

We’ve seen ecommerce becoming hugely popular locally since lockdown began but other businesses have undergone more drastic changes or pivots to different sectors entirely.

But pivoting also comes with new considerations, especially as regards insurance and your business risk profile.

It should be noted that something as simple as asking staffers to work from home can change a businesses risk profile as head of product and insurer relationships at FNB Insurance Brokers, Malesela Maupa, explains.

“If you have now given your employee permission to take and use those assets at home, you have to inform your broker or insurer so they can extend the cover on those assets to all risks cover or extend the policy to cover these assets while they are in the possession of your employees,” says Maupa.

However, this is one of the simpler aspects of a business’ risk profile changing.

For instance, a clothing retailer which has switched to an online distribution model that stores customer data will have to comply with POPIA.

A restaurant that delivers food will have to consider the risk that comes with owning vehicles as well as the cost of insurance for those vehicles.

While businesses which have explored new avenues of work must consider new risks presented, even business which haven’t changed all that much need to be cognizant of the changes in the world.

“As more people started working from home, the sales of furniture such as chairs and office desks spiked. Furniture companies would have had to contact their broker or insurer to advise them of a change in order frequency as well as the increased stock kept in storage. These companies may also have had to increase their transit insurance since the furniture remains the liability of the company until it is delivered to the buyer,” Maupa explains.

The best piece of advice dispensed by Maupa is this – assess your risk regularly. Even without a pandemic and lockdown, the world of business moves rapidly and as a business owner this should always be top of mind.

“The world in which your business operates and the way in which it operates is going to change faster than ever before. Just as your business had to adapt to a ‘new normal’, you need to regularly step back, reassess your risk and make sure that you adapt your insurance so that you are correctly and adequately covered,” Maupa concludes.

[Image – CC 0 Pixabay]
Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.