<![CDATA[Blog]]> https://www.risk-strategies.com/ en info@risk-strategies.com Copyright 2021 2021-10-27T22:44:56-04:00 <![CDATA[The Other Side: COVID and the Evolution of Real Estate Occupancies ]]> https://risk-strategies.com/knowledge-center/article/the-other-side-covid-and-the-evolution-of-real-estate-occupancies#When:20:00:40Z Having sat on the Board of Directors for the Downtown Boston Business Improvement District, I am intimately aware of the social, financial and employee impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on Boston’s Commercial Real Estate District. Footfall traffic has dropped to unprecedented lows and tenant office space utilization is in the single digits. The ripple effect on local business cannot be overstated and this is not unique to Boston. The national impact has been no less dramatic.

Since March of 2020, commercial, retail and hospitality real estate nationally has seen a utilization drop of over 30%. In certain sectors the…]]> 2021-10-25T20:00:40+00:00 <![CDATA[7 Tips to Prepare Your Benefits Administration System for Open Enrollment]]> https://risk-strategies.com/knowledge-center/article/7-tips-to-prepare-your-benefits-administration-system-for-open-enrollment#When:19:08:50Z The annual Open Enrollment period for many employee benefits programs is quickly approaching. Significant time and energy is typically spent on selecting the right insurance carriers and plans, implementing new benefits and perks, and developing communications. Another area requiring careful consideration is the benefits administration system used to capture enrollments.

While each system will present its own requirements, there are key components that deserve attention regardless of the platform. Below are tips and strategies that may help your organization prepare. 

  1. Choose your open enrollment approach:  What level of engagement will you require of employees during open enrollment?…]]> 2021-10-20T19:08:50+00:00 <![CDATA[Offering Health Plan Discounts for Vaccines – Federal Guidance Released]]> https://risk-strategies.com/knowledge-center/article/offering-health-plan-discounts-for-vaccines-federal-guidance-released#When:18:37:24Z The recent FAQ guidance from federal agencies confirmed that employers who sponsor group health plans can provide contribution rate discounts to encourage employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccine provided that the plan complies with the rules governing “activity-only” wellness programs. In this post, we will cover “activity-only” wellness programs further and discuss other important considerations when implementing a health plan discount for vaccinated employees.

    Wellness Program: Federal agencies released FAQ guidance on October 4, 2021 with some helpful answers.  The Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services and Treasury together issued guidance stating that group health plans may offer…]]> 2021-10-20T18:37:24+00:00 <![CDATA[The Other Side: Television, Film & Live Entertainment: The Shows Goes On ]]> https://risk-strategies.com/knowledge-center/article/the-other-side-television-film-live-entertainment-the-shows-goes-on#When:18:54:54Z Legendary film director and producer Orson Welles once said: “The enemy of art is the absence of limitations.” Setting limitations is exactly what television, streaming and film executives are doing to safely create content amid the pandemic.

    As the industry moves closer to pre-pandemic levels of production, carriers are busier than ever handling increased demand from studios, networks and streaming providers. However, after being hit hard with payouts and claims throughout 2020, carriers are no longer willing to provide coverage for COVID-19-related claims.  Most entertainment insurance packages are now excluding coverage for communicable diseases, like COVID-19.

    With no financial safety…]]> 2021-10-13T18:54:54+00:00 <![CDATA[Delivery Business Challenges and Opportunities Brought on by Supply Chain Disruptions]]> https://risk-strategies.com/knowledge-center/article/delivery-business-challenges-and-opportunities-brought-on-by-supply-chain-disruptions#When:20:17:30Z The ripple effects of COVID-19 are still reverberating through the transportation industry. From top to bottom, the supply chain is being stretched thin by manufacturing disruptions and increased delivery demands. Production and manufacturing has slowed as factories were forced to shut down due to outbreaks, with knock-on effects that will take years to recover from. In the transportation industry, production delays in Asia-based factories making semiconductors required for cars and trucks has led to $210 billion dollars in lost revenue. Shipping container shortages, congestion at international ports and spiked shipping rates for select routes has led to a…]]> 2021-10-12T20:17:30+00:00 <![CDATA[Amazon’s Cannabis Restrictions Lift, Leaving DPSs with Increased Liability]]> https://risk-strategies.com/knowledge-center/article/amazons-cannabis-restrictions-lift-leaving-dpss-with-increased-liability#When:19:54:16Z After struggling to find effective incentives to recruit delivery drivers for Amazon Delivery Service Providers (DSPs), the e-tail giant has given them the green light to waive cannabis testing and widely advertise that applicants won’t be screened for marijuana use. This deepens the applicant pool during a serious driver shortage and offers employees the freedom to partake in recreational use while working steadily.

    While this may come across as a progressive, forward-thinking move to both normalize recreational cannabis use and bolster driver recruitment DSPs should think hard about and look closer at the potential risks and liabilities involved.

    <![CDATA[Beyond COVID - Three Emerging Topics in Higher Education]]> https://risk-strategies.com/knowledge-center/article/beyond-covid-three-emerging-topics-in-higher-education#When:14:45:41Z Each year, higher education risk management professionals come together at the University Risk Management and Insurance Association’s (URMIA) annual conference. An event I look forward to with anticipation every year, the theme of this year’s conference is particularly apt,  “Emerging from the Storm.” 

    This year, I am eager to hear the stories of how school leaders developed unique solutions to the challenges colleges and universities faced during the COVID-19 pandemic. In the face of multiple, complex challenges, they found ways to weather the storm that is COVID-19 and continue servicing their  students.

    Certainly COVID-19 remains a central topic in…]]> 2021-10-12T14:45:41+00:00 <![CDATA[Employee Perks: Adapting Your Approach for a Hybrid Workforce]]> https://risk-strategies.com/knowledge-center/article/employee-perks-adapting-your-approach-for-a-hybrid-workforce#When:14:00:27Z Over the past several years, many employers have begun offering creative perks within their employee benefits program  as a differentiator to help in recruitment and retention efforts. Many of these perks, however, were designed and implemented to help employees working in an office environment.

    COVID-19 has accelerated the move to remote or hybrid work. It’s important, then, that employers review whether their perks are offering work for this reality. The purpose behind offering perks is still the same - to provide greater convenience and reduce employee stress - but, the themes and delivery methods may need adjustment.

    Risk Strategies…]]> 2021-10-12T14:00:27+00:00 <![CDATA[Why Those Outside of Flood Zones Need to Consider Flood Insurance]]> https://risk-strategies.com/knowledge-center/article/why-those-outside-of-flood-zones-need-to-consider-flood-insurance#When:21:54:32Z Those living far from the ocean, a river or other typically problematic water features may think they’re safe, but new extreme storm realities mean inland properties outside of designated flood zones are at increased risk of deluge-driven surface water and flash flooding – broadly called pluvial flooding – which is not covered by homeowner’s insurance.

    Often measured in multiple inches per hour, the unprecedented rainfall from these usually unnamed storms turns roads and streets into “rivers” as soil absorption and drainage systems are overwhelmed. We saw this in Oklahoma in June and July when strong storms with torrential…]]> 2021-10-07T21:54:32+00:00 <![CDATA[Strength in numbers - and better medical malpractice rates]]> https://risk-strategies.com/knowledge-center/article/strength-in-numbers-and-better-medical-malpractice-rates#When:14:16:45Z Before it became part of Risk Strategies, Danna-Gracey, the agency I co-founded with Julie Danna and Tom Murphy, was Florida’s leading independent medical malpractice insurance specialist. One of the ways we drove the early stages of our growth and leading market position was by engaging our doctors in endorsed programs, as well as one original risk purchasing group (RPG).

    By getting their coverage as part of a participating professional society, our physicians earned credits that helped reduce their premium costs. It was convenient, beneficial, and very popular. We worked hard to organize and promote these arrangements and, at our peak,…]]> 2021-10-07T14:16:45+00:00