29 Oct 2021
by Adele Cherreson Cole

First up on Day Two the ALARM Board and Office formed a panel to answer questions and update delegates and sponsors on the latest from ALARM, as well as what it’s like to be involved in ALARM. Paul Dudley, our longest serving current Board member said: “Being a director of ALARM is a great experience, as is being part of this fellowship. I have learnt so much through ALARM that I wouldn’t have anywhere else.” The association is looked at with appreciation and affection. Financial Director Chris Walker said: “ALARM gets under your skin.”

Beth Abbott, Communications Officer at ALARM explained the opportunities for members to get involved at all levels of the association. From joining a sector or regional committee, to providing a Meet the Member website post, to contributing to publications, or simply helping approve and proof content, there may be a role for you. Please contact Beth direct at [email protected] if you are interested.

Philip Morton and Mark Seels from Aon took us through an informative and topical presentation on the latest progress on electric vehicles and their insurance and technical challenges, plus some fleet management trends. Change is happening fast, with the biggest selling new car in September 2021 in Europe being a Tesla.

With the advance of new technology and a climate aware shift in transportation comes increased costs for first adopters and road users. Electric car motor claims are proving pricier than their internal combustion engine (ICE) counterparts. Being a Tesla owner, Philip explained using Tesla as an example: for instance a Tesla will cost almost £5,000 for every 28 days off the road.

This could have a huge impact on claims costs when considering credit hire. In fact hire cars are transitioning quickly to electric. Hertz US has just made a US$4.2 billion investment in Tesla cars. Teslas cost around £900 a month to hire. Most insurance costs have a high percentage of credit hire. Repair costs for Teslas are also high. Electric vehicles are expensive to crash into! 

The threat of data breach never goes away and Steven McGhee from Zurich updated delegates on current claims trends and activity, as well as strategies to tackle breaches. He shared data from Zurich indicating almost a twofold increase in data breach claims in 2020 and predicted to be similar in 2021. Claimant firms’ activity has increased since the start of the pandemic. With costs claimed up to ten times agreed damages, it’s a trend to be aware of.

After lunch the Conference was split into a risk management and an insurance group. Fiona Miller, Police Scotland, Hugh Coyle, Falkirk Council, and Catherine Christie, Shetland Islands Council, formed a panel to air questions and discuss best practice, while bringing in those from the floor. The main topic was assurance and risk, following the theme set by Karen Locke on Day One. It became an opportunity for sharing experiences and successes – along with frustrations! If anyone would like to join in the assurance conversation, please email [email protected] and we will forward messages to the panel.

The insurance group presentation was given by Ross McIntyre from Weightmans, who brought us up-to-date on musculoskeletal issues, with an increase in personal injury claims attributed to inadequate and inappropriate working conditions while home working. Employers need to take seriously their duty to protect workers and should be aware of this growing claims trend. It is likely claims will continue to be made as home becomes established as the new workplace.

Stella Matimba from Police Scotland closed the Scotland Conference 2021 with a topical look at business continuity post-pandemic. Stella not only shared her best practice as Business Continuity Officer, but talked about the wider issues of resilience and what challenges and opportunities are presenting now and may manifest in the near future. She concluded with her formula for resilience – observe, adapt, innovate – a great note on which to end our Conference!

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