News Matrix Insurance Group

Category: Insurance


8 Risk Management Tips that Every Food Business Should Know
8 Risk Management Tips that Every Food Business Should Know

Posted on September 01, 2020 | by | Posted in Insurance

When it comes to running a food business, preparing for the worst is critical to its success. From food spoilage and kitchen fires to liquor liability lawsuits and allergic reactions, a single incident can quickly turn around your fortunes and even force you to close your doors for good. That’s why it’s important for businesses to conduct a restaurant risk analysis first to identify potential issues and address them early on.

In this article, we’ll be discussing 7 of the best risk management tips that will keep your employees safe, protect the nature of your business, and ensure the success of your food business by limiting the chances of incidents from occurring.

1. Proper staff training

Your staff is the driving force of your food business and having a competent team of employees can really make a huge difference. It all starts with proper staff training and certification. Your staff should be well-versed at handling day-to-day operations and demonstrate both skill and knowledge in the following areas.

  • Work safety – Protect your employees by conducting regular training sessions on using kitchen tools, equipment, and the like. Your staff should wear the right uniform for work along with the required personal protective equipment (PPE) for their line of duty.
  • Food sanitation –  Walk your employees through the proper food safety protocol such as knowing how to store, handle, and prepare food. Hygiene is a top priority when running a food business so make sure your staff are knowledgeable about food safety and sanitation.
  • Customer service –  One of the hallmarks of a great food business is excellent customer service. Employees who interact with customers should know how to address their concerns in a friendly and professional manner.
  • Alcohol service – If your business serves, sells, or furnishes alcohol, you could be held liable for incidents involving an intoxicated guest. Make sure your employees are trained in proper alcohol service, especially when dealing with an intoxicated guest.

2. Take advantage of technology

Food businesses today should take advantage of technology to mitigate potential privacy risks. For example, if you store sensitive customer information like credit card numbers, it should be in your best interest to protect those data at all costs. Keep phishing, malware, and viruses at bay with the appropriate software and firewall. Add password protection and encryption to your WiFi to secure your customers from hackers.

3. Maintain the facilities

To reduce the odds of property damage, be sure to maintain the facilities of your restaurant. First and foremost, the kitchen should always be clean and hygienic. Conduct regular inspection to ensure the interior and exterior of your establishment are in good working order. A well-maintained restaurant will not only draw in more customers but will also be safer for you and your staff to operate in.

4.  Meet health and safety codes

Meeting health codes is a must for any food business and your staff should know how to follow them to the tee. Regulations vary by state and country which is why you want to review them and have your staff walk through the health codes. Employee hygiene, food storage, and proper equipment use are just some of the ways to reduce cross-contamination in the kitchen.

5. Acquire the right licensing

You will be required to obtain the right licensing before your food business is up and running. Some of the things you’ll need to obtain are:

  • Business license. In most counties, your business must have a commercial license in order to legally operate so securing a business licence should be one of your main priorities.
  • Foodservice license. If your restaurant or bar passes health inspections, your local health department will issue you a food service license.
  • Liquor license. You will need a liquor license in order to sell or serve alcoholic beverages at your place of business. Some states may even require your servers to carry permits before they can legally serve the public.

6. Disclose dietary information and potential allergens

According to the Australian Consumer Law, failure to list a potential allergen in a meal is considered a breach and you may end up dealing with a case in your hands. Keep your customers safe and disclose any dietary information and potential allergens in your restaurant’s menu.  For example, if you offer gluten-, dairy-, or meat-free dishes, make sure to highlight these offerings on your menus to assist customers with dietary restrictions.

If possible, list nutritional details about your food items on the menu, in a separate handout, or on your website. This is especially helpful if you have low-calorie options you want to feature for health-conscious guests.

7. Preparing for forced closure

Running a food business is about the constant balance between income and expenses. When an incident such as a fire, natural disaster, or a global health pandemic leads to an unforeseen closure, the loss of income can prove devastating. This is where business interruption insurance comes in. Business interruption insurance provides protection against forced closures associated with a property insurance claim.

Having the right insurance policies is an important part of any restaurant’s risk management plan. It helps you prepare for unexpected incidents and weather financial storms stemming from serious accidents and lawsuits. To learn more about which type of insurance your business needs, contact Matrix Insurance today and we’ll attend to your needs as soon as possible.

Managing the Risks Associated With the Motor Trade Industry
Managing the Risks Associated With the Motor Trade Industry

Posted on August 28, 2020 | by | Posted in Insurance

It’s no secret that the motor trade industry carries plenty of risks. From employer safety to cybersecurity and vehicle management, it’s important to know how to manage such risks and secure proper cover for your business. In this article, we’ll be taking a look at the most common risks associated with the motor trade industry insurance and help you determine which type of cover you should purchase.

Health and safety risks

Motor trade organisations pose a wide range of health and safety risks for both the staff and the general public. Here is how you can minimise these risks and ensure the safety of everyone in the organisation.

  • Machinery handling – Vehicle maintenance and repair often require the use of mechanical equipment. To protect employees from machinery hazards, it’s crucial to implement personal protective equipment (PPE) such as safety goggles and ear defenders. Conducting routine maintenance and prohibiting machines from being left unattended will go a long way towards reducing workplace hazards.
  • Falling objects – Car lift failure is very dangerous and employees could suffer from serious injuries from falling vehicle parts. Limit the risk of falling objects by inspecting car lifts and jacks on a regular basis and ensuring the equipment does not exceed safe working loads.
  • Hazardous substances – Engine oil, toxic exhaust fumes, and cleaning chemicals can pose a serious threat to one’s health. Avoid health concerns by wearing the appropriate PPE like gloves, goggles, and masks when dealing with hazardous substances.
  • Electrical/fire hazards – Faulty electrical wiring, overcharged batteries, and contact with petrol can potentially cause electrical/fire hazards. It’s crucial to conduct a fire risk assessment of your building to mitigate any fire risks along with proper staff training on using electrical devices safely.
  • Public access –  When working in the garage or workshop, it’s best to limit public access as much as possible. Encourage the staff and your customers to refrain from entering the garage or workshop without proper permission as these areas possess health and safety risks for the general public.

Vehicle management

A successful motor trade business is about maintaining your most important assets and those are your vehicles. The goal is to keep your vehicles safe and secure whether they’re in the workshop, garage, or in the forecourt. 

  • Staff selection – Proper staff selection is one of the best ways to keep your vehicles secure. Implement a strict employee vetting system and training program to ensure your staff members are trustworthy, reliable, and honest.
  • Vehicle theft – Vehicle theft is commonplace in the motor trade industry and it can negatively impact your organisation in many ways. Employing security guards, installing a comprehensive security system, and safe storage of vehicle keys are effective at reducing vehicle theft within the site.
  • Test drives – Most customers request for a test drive prior to purchasing a vehicle. Before allowing vehicle access, make sure your staff reviews the customer’s credentials first. Ensure that the customer’s driver’s license is authentic and conduct a background check if necessary to limit the risk of vehicle theft.
  • Vehicle technology – In a world where vehicle technology is constantly evolving, motor vehicles continue to be outfitted with the latest features and advancements. Keeping up to date on these technologies is crucial to prevent misuse, vehicle breakdowns, or advanced methods of theft. Only allow well-knowledged staff to handle new technology like hybrid vehicles and electric cars.

Cyber-security

As organisations across the motor trade industry go digital, having top cyber-security features is a must for any business. Protecting sensitive data such as customer information, commercial online banking systems and employee records are more important than ever.

  • Make sure your organisation implements top cyber-security measures such using data encryption, strong passwords, antivirus and malware protection, and updating software frequently.
  • Train your staff on how to detect phishing scams and reporting a breach. Only allow tech-focused employees access to sensitive data.
  • Enforce specific cyber-security policies, such as a BYOD policy, safe internet/email usage policy and a data breach response policy.

Securing the right cover

Apart from top risk management practices, ensure ultimate peace of mind for your motor trade organisation by purchasing motor trade insurance. Motor Trade Insurance policies are designed to cover organisations whose staff earns their living by buying, selling, repairing, and working with vehicles of all shapes and sizes.  Motor trade insurance provides cover for small, big or even part-time motor traders. There are many different kinds of motor trade insurance policies that differ in premiums, features, and the extent of coverage. A motor trader should choose an insurance policy that not only fits within their budget, but also their needs and requirements as well.

Apart from motor trade insurance, you need additional coverage to ensure your organisation is protected from unforeseen financial incidents. 

  • Building and contents insurance
  • Public and products liability insurance
  • Crime insurance
  • Employer’s liability insurance
  • Tools and equipment insurance
  • Directors’ and officers’ insurance
  • Professional indemnity insurance
  • Road risk insurance

To better understand which types of insurance is right for you, it’s worth contacting a reputable group of insurance brokers that will give you sound advice on the best insurance solutions for your business. For more information about motor trade insurance and which cover you should purchase, contact Matrix Insurance today and we’ll gladly attend to your needs.

Insurance for the post-Covid world
Insurance for the post-Covid world

Posted on August 11, 2020 | by | Posted in Insurance

Most businesses across Australia have taken steps to re-open following the Covid outbreak, though it’s still cautious times with plenty of fear and uncertainty around. Many businesses are finding the way they operate post-Covid is different than they did prior, and the reality is that things may never go back to the way they were.

Has the way you run your business changed since Covid? 

Small businesses are facing a drastic shift in consumer behaviour due to Covid-19, and are making necessary adjustments in what they are able to offer. Many changes are for the better, and in fact will streamline business practises for a safer future. 

Some of the changes or issues businesses are experiencing include:

• Extra cleaning – All premises are now expected to be cleaner and more hygienic than ever before; particularly for businesses that attract a flow of customers. 

• Working from home – Lockdowns due to the pandemic meant businesses allowed staff to work from home. Many are finding that the working from home options has actually been a positive practise for their business, and will continue this into the future. 

• Online streaming – Quite simply, people have turned to the internet for everything during the pandemic. Entertainment, shopping, communication, ordering food has all been via a smartphone or computer. This trend is likely to continue at least in the short term until consumers are comfortable resuming their normal activities, and businesses are adapting to this. 

• Physical distancing – Restrictions are still in place in most states, and venues must comply to physical distancing guidelines. This means many venues are unable to fill to capacity, which unfortunately can mean loss of revenue. 

• Cashless society – Covid-19 has seen many people rely more on “tap and go” purchasing, and a cashless society has emerged. This is a trend that will likely continue into the future. 

• Staffing issues – Borders being closed has caused grief among many businesses who rely on travellers for staffing. 

How does the post-Covid society affect your insurance? 

Insurance for small business has never been more important. A good Business Insurance policy will give you peace of mind during these uncertain times, particularly if it includes a Business Interruption policy which can assist in covering loss of income and some expenses if your business is unable to operate as normal. It’s also a good time now to check on your coverage for instances like staff taking computers and equipment from the office so they can work from home. With staff working from home, you will want to ensure your Cyber Liability Insurance is up to date – you can’t guarantee all networks are secure and the risk of a cyber attack is very real and can be extremely damaging to your business. 

Time for an insurance check-up? 

For peace of mind, contact Matrix Insurance and have a chat about your business insurance requirements. 

Host Liquor Liability vs. Liquor Liability: What’s the Difference?
Host Liquor Liability vs. Liquor Liability: What’s the Difference?

Posted on July 24, 2020 | by | Posted in Insurance

Businesses that serve alcohol to visitors face distinct liability threats. In many states, business owners can be held liable for injuries or property damage caused by intoxicated guests and clients. This can even apply to establishments that do not serve or offer alcohol but allow it to be taken inside their facilities. To safeguard business assets from legal enforcement or suits, company owners ought to highly consider liquor liability insurance. Matrix Insurance, one of the nation’s leading providers of specialized insurance coverage items, understands the confusion between host liquor liability and liquor liability and wants to clear things up to help business owners choose the right policies.

Both host liquor liability insurance coverage and liquor liability insurance can cover alcohol-related lawsuits against business owners, but the type of coverage you need depends on the kind of service you provide. Depending on the type of business you operate,, you will need to buy either host liquor liability or liquor liability insurance coverage. Read on to find out the difference and choose which one is the best option for you.

What is host liquor liability insurance?

Plenty of states have social host laws that can hold business owners responsible for damage caused by drunk customers or guests. Companies that do not serve, sell, or manufacture alcohol – but allow it to be taken in on the premises or at an event they host– can protect their business against liquor-related claims with host liquor liability insurance coverage.

This type of insurance provides a wide range of coverage for businesses in the event a customer, worker, or other guest causes residential or commercial property damage after taking in excessive alcohol. Host liquor liability insurance coverage can protect a wide variety of establishments including an accounting firm that allows beer and white wine at a business picnic, a web design firm that permits staff members to bring in booze to share on Friday afternoons, and a restaurant that doesn’t sell alcohol but allows patrons to bring their own.

Host liquor insurance coverage is mostly included in general liability insurance which can cover for expenses resulting from third-party injuries or property damage. For example, if a worker who consumed numerous drinks at a business celebration gets into an accident and damages another person’s car, the host liquor liability element of business’ general liability policy can pay for the injured person’s medical bills, repairs, and any court-related fees should the driver decide to sue the business.

What is liquor liability insurance?

Liquor liability insurance is a type of insurance that protects companies that produce, serve, or offer alcohol. The policy provides coverage for legal charges, settlements, and medical expenses associated with physical injury or property damage caused by an intoxicated individual who was served or offered liquor by the insurance policyholder.

The types of companies that generally require liquor liability insurance coverage include bars, breweries, dining establishments, liquor stores, corner stores, wineries, supermarkets, and the like. Any organisation that sells alcohol, regardless of size, is exposed to liquor liability and may benefit from acquiring insurance coverage. In some states, companies are legally required to obtain this coverage before receiving a commercial lease or a liquor license.

Liability claims made to a bar or restaurant due to property damage injury caused by an intoxicated guest can prove quite costly. A common example of an alcohol-related claim happens when a drunk patron leaves a bar, gets into his car, drives, and commits a vehicular manslaughter act. In this case, the victim’s family might sue the bar for both civil and criminal damages. Another example is at a catered event where a restaurant served alcohol and 2 visitors got into a fight, whereby serious injuries incurred.

These are just two of the many instances that can potentially happen when a company serves alcohol to the general public. This makes liquor liability insurance extremely important as businesses are held accountable for the damages brought about by intoxicated guests from their establishment.

Tips To Reduce Liquor Liability Lawsuits 

While covering your business is vital when allowing or serving alcohol, it’s also a good idea to take proactive steps to lower your risks of getting liquor liability lawsuits and claims. Some recommended tips to keep in mind are:

  • Employ security personnel and ensure they’re trained to examine ID’s and de-escalate situations
  • Ensure that your staff (i.e. bartenders and servers) are well-trained in safe alcohol service
  • Promote safe alcohol consumption
  • Do not serve intoxicated persons and escort them outside the establishment if they’ve had too much alcohol
  • Do not allow guests to drink and drive and instead call an Uber or cab ride to get customers home safely
  • Implement a cut-off policy for over-served patrons
  • Refuse service to any guest who cannot prove they’re at a legal drinking age
  • Proper staff training in managing and escorting problematic patrons safely

Host liquor liability and liquor liability are important for businesses involved in serving, offering, and allowing alcohol to the public. Simply put, host liquor liability is for establishments that do not serve alcohol, but permit the consumption of the substance while liquor liability insurance is for businesses that manufacture, serve, and offer alcohol to patrons and guests.

If you want to learn more about which insurance is right for you, feel free to contact Matrix Insurance who are liquor insurance specialists today and we will help navigate you throughout the entire process.

Everything You Need to Know About Luxury Car Insurance
Everything You Need to Know About Luxury Car Insurance

Posted on July 24, 2020 | by | Posted in Insurance

When we hear the words luxury car, we often think of a vehicle that’s superior in terms of comfort, style, and performance. For some, a luxury car is a status symbol while for others it’s a relentlessly pursued dream. Whatever the case may be, a luxury car is about the hefty price tag and these vehicles are quite expensive to maintain. Even the slightest of damage can result in a massive repair bill which is why having luxury car insurance is an absolute must if you own a high-end vehicle. Read on to discover what luxury car insurance is all about.

Why you should insure your luxury car

As the name suggests, luxury cars come with expensive components that are more intricate to work with than a standard vehicle. Therefore, damage to such components means that you’ll be reaching deep into your pockets if you want to maintain the look and performance of your machine. With luxury car insurance, you don’t have to worry about the damages to your vehicle since the insurance company will take care of it under the agreed terms and conditions.

Most people don’t know the difference between luxury car insurance and standard car insurance. The price of a typical car insurance policy is heavily based on its Insured Declared Value (IDV) which is often referred to as the market price of the vehicle. In simple terms, IDV is the maximum limit of the amount the insurance company will provide the policyholder in the event of a total loss. Since a luxury car’s IDV is on the higher end, its insurance premium is also higher compared to the insurance policy of standard cars.

How much does luxury car insurance cost?

There are a number of factors that determine the exact price of a luxury car insurance policy and these are:

  • Car manufacturer
  • Vehicle model
  • Vehicle age
  • The location at which the car was purchased
  • Claim history
  • No claim bonus (if applicable)

Aside from the aforementioned factors, the cost will also be affected by the kind of policy you choose and the insurer from whom you’ve purchased it. There are plenty of car insurance premium calculators online which can help you check the rates of luxury car insurance and obtain quotes. Simply fill up the information page regarding your vehicle and the calculator will show an approximate premium cost of your car’s insurance policy.

Things to consider before buying luxury car insurance

Luxury car insurance isn’t cheap. Therefore, you have to have a good understanding of your car insurance requirements so you don’t end up paying for insurance policies you don’t need. Here are a couple of things to keep in mind before buying luxury car insurance:

1. Choose the right add-ons

Add-ons are for when you need extended coverage for your luxury car. They usually cover situations that are called ‘exceptions’ such as engine protection, roadside assistance, zero depreciation, and more. Identify your add-on requirements and choose only the appropriate add-ons for your luxury car.

2. Compare car insurance prices online

The internet has made it easy for luxury car owners to compare car insurance prices online. Different insurers will provide different quotes for your luxury car’s policy so it’s worth comparing the prices so you can get the best deals. Do look out for cheaper policies with reduced coverage and avoid them at all costs.

3. Protect your luxury car

Luxury cars are a prime target for thieves and criminals. This makes it extremely important that you protect your luxury car as much as possible. Installing anti-theft devices and alarm monitoring systems can go a long way towards reducing your insurance premiums by a significant margin. 

4. Engine protection cover

Engine protection is a must-have add-on when it comes to your luxury car. High performance vehicles use expensive components on their engines which can prove costly to repair in case they get damaged. Such costs can be mitigated when you have engine protection cover in place.

5. Roadside assistance

In the unfortunate scenario that your car breaks down, a roadside assistance add-on is a major lifesaver. With this add-on, the insurance company will send help and provide you with the necessary assistance to get your luxury car up and running again. If this is not possible, then your vehicle will be towed to the garage.

6. Comprehensive coverage

You should always include comprehensive coverage as part of your luxury car’s insurance since it provides all-around insurance coverage. While the premiums will be more expensive compared to a liability-only policy, the extended coverage is great for peace of mind and will prove beneficial to your luxury car over the long term.

Luxury car insurance is a must-have for car owners with expensive tastes. Not only does it cover you from eye-popping maintenance costs, but it also limits your exposure to legal risks and hefty fines. All registered cars must have Compulsory Third Party Insurance (CTP) as the bare minimum, but this usually isn’t enough for luxury car owners. By understanding what luxury car insurance is about, you can buy the best insurance possible for your prized possession. 

Request a FREE Quote

    Top