5 QUESTIONS TO ASK YOUR RESTORATION PARTNER DURING HURRICANE SEASON
Last year was one of the most catastrophic hurricane seasons in history with more than $200 billion in damages reported and experts predict a similar season in 2018.
Before storms develop, there are a few pieces of information company leaders need to be aware of to prevent business downtime and the potential for hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost time and damaged property. Having a strong relationship with your restoration partner is critical. Whether you’re looking for a partner or have an existing relationship, you’ll want to ask the restoration firm the following questions and learn why they’re important to your business continuity plan:
What experience does your firm have with responding to hurricanes and can you provide any client references?
- You want to know if your restoration partner has direct experience handling multiple types of catastrophic losses and one that also has the proper team readily available to ensure your property is being restored correctly and quickly. Experience will also guide your partner in making decisions while mitigating damage that will limit your company’s financial exposure beyond what your insurance company is willing to pay.
During the 2017 hurricane season, did your firm respond to the major storms in both Texas and Florida and were you able to service all of your contracted commercial clients?
- Most restoration firms operate at 110% capacity, limiting their ability to respond and increasing wait time when demand is at its peak. Kustom never exceeds a work capacity of 75%, particularly during hurricane season and other high demand periods, ensuring a timely response for its clients. (this almost sounds like we are not in high demand, which is why we never exceed 75% of capacity. Can we talk about dedicated resources for clients during these peak periods?)
- You’ll also want to ask this question to investigate if they were able to adequately supply their clients with the necessary materials (what materials is the restoration partner supplying?) after the storms. You should always inquire about what your partner’s offsite inventory is and what their plan is for when local supplies run out. (why would you ALWAYS inquire about this? Are we talking about consumables and chemicals?)
What experience does your firm have accessing and working in restricted areas? Can you provide examples and references?
- You’ll want to choose a restoration partner that has prior experience working with local authorities and government officials to gain access to restricted areas caused by storm damage. You want a team that can begin mitigating the loss and restoring the company back to normal business operations as soon as the threat of the storm has passed.
Does your firm self-perform emergency service work or do you contract a franchise, referral, strategic partner, or network?
- Various restoration firms will sell their network of affiliate partners as a benefit to you; however, each of their network partners also have a list of clients they need to service, pushing you down the priority list.
- Working with a restoration partner who performs the work themselves is beneficial to you because the contractor knows your business and priorities before beginning work, ultimately saving time and money.
How many claims from the 2017 hurricane season remain open and are not agreed with insurance markets?
- If the firm has a high number of claims rejected by insurance agencies, that most likely means they aren’t receiving approval for the work by the insurance companies before beginning the restoration process. This can end up costing your business hundreds of thousands of dollars. By providing daily updates to the insurance team, Kustom regularly limits cost adjustments to 1-2%.
- Protect your business further by asking the firm to perform a pre-loss assessment on your property. By doing so, you’ll determine potential costs for damages done by a storm and will be able to better prepare with proper insurance.
The worst mistake a business can make during hurricane season is not properly vetting their restoration partner prior to a storm. Not properly vetting your partner, or not having a restoration partner solidified by the time a major storm hits at all, causes confusion, chaos, and increased costs of repairs. To learn more about best practices for preparing for hurricane season, please download our 2018 Hurricane Preparedness Guide.
THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO HURRICANE DISASTER PLANS AND RECOVERY
With nearly 20 years of experience in the disaster restoration industry and extensive knowledge in working with hurricane damage, Kustom US is providing you with information about emergency communication, potential risks, and recovering from a loss.
WHAT YOU'LL LEARN:
Best practices for preparing for each type of damage
How to work with your restoration team
How to limit the length of interruption to your business
DOWNLOAD THE FREE KUSTOM US 2018 HURRICANE PREPAREDNESS GUIDE FOR BUSINESSES