Developing the Dealership Culture
The first quarter of the Garage Insurance 101 series was devoted to developing an understanding of the insurance industry: how underwriters work; and, identifying the elements that influence premiums.
The second section will be devoted to controlling as many of those factors as possible.
Through the analysis we performed with the Dealership Loss History (Understanding Claims Trends and Loss Picks – February Blast) you should have a solid grasp of those areas where claims are occurring: Test Drives; Slip and Falls; Faulty Work; Inventory Security/Key Control;
F & I Claims; etc.
The recommended discussion with your Risk Management Team (Feb Blast) will create and initiate policies and protocols that control or eliminate claims in these areas: Improved Housekeeping/Maintenance practices; Established Written Test Drive procedures; F & I Audits; Attention to Inventory Security with the purchase of a Key Machine and/or the hiring of an Outside Security Service. All of these are proven strategies that will minimize claims frequencies.
In addition to your internal team, I would suggest that you have an honest discussion with members of your 20 Group. Ask them about their Dealership claims frequency and what procedures they have initiated to control losses. Meet with your Insurance carrier and demand a Loss Control program with specific dates and objectives. Remind them of the “partnership” speech they gave you and hold them accountable. They have the internal resources and a huge stake in your success!
Remember the process.
Any Loss Control efforts coordinated with your Insurer will go a long way toward tempering future premium increases. Carrier underwriters want to see both a reactive and proactive response to claims by Management – make them a participant in the Risk Management process and keep them involved.
Finally, it is important to inspire a commitment to Loss Control from your entire Dealership Team…the Salespersons, the Technicians, the Title Clerks, the Porters…everyone has to be on board! This is what we mean by Establishing/Developing the Culture.
We would suggest setting “claim free” goals for each department and monitoring them quarterly. Initiate an incentive program that rewards each department for reaching their goals. Encourage competition between Departments. This heightens awareness and goes a long way toward controlling claims frequency. Manufacturers and other Industrial realted companies have adopted these strategies to control accidents and claims incidents with their workers.
There are many factors in the development of premium, but your Loss History is the key. Minimizing claims is the very first step in controlling your premiums. A commitment to Loss Control from your employees is essential.
Look for the next info blast…Preparing for Weather Events!