Business continuity planning: 3 key insurance implications nonprofits need to address

notebook with business continuity plan

If there’s one lesson the COVID-19 crisis has underscored from a business perspective, it’s that adaptability is the name of the game. This certainly rings true for nonprofits and social service organizations whose communities often rely on them more than ever during turbulent times. And while the pandemic has already forced many organizations to adjust their operations, there’s more unpredictability afoot.

Amid ongoing change, business continuity planning (BCP) is key to not only ensuring nonprofits can continue to meet the needs of their clients, but also that they’re insured properly as they change the way they work. This requires making sure the right people are around the proverbial planning table, specifically an insurance provider who can help nonprofit leaders understand current trends, review their current insurance program, steer business plans based on potential insurance implications and make sure adequate coverage is in place to minimize risk.

Some of the most common insurance implications nonprofits need to address during BCP are:

1. Mobile property

A thorough review of mobile property – which includes items such as computers, tablets, monitors and much more – and how it is insured is an important undertaking. Business Personal Property (BPP) insurance, which covers this type of contents and equipment, is typically limited when items are away from their designated locations. That means if employees are using those tools to work remotely, as many are, there may be a gap in coverage should an item be damaged or stolen while off premise. As you review existing coverage, keep in mind there are some policy enhancements that do offer extensions of coverage for BPP being used remotely. In some cases, it may be more appropriate to convert the coverage to an Inland Marine floater coverage that’s not tied to a specific location given the fluid working environment.

2. Cyber liability and data breaches

Whether it’s the rollout of virtual services, online giving programs or team collaboration software, nonprofits across the board are now relying more heavily on web-based technologies. As such, cyber liability and data breach coverage is an essential part of the conversation, especially as hackers have ramped up their efforts to “launch attacks against unsuspecting victims” during the pandemic. Brokers and insurance providers can offer key insight on how digital strategy, platforms, contract language and other factors can have a significant impact on an organization’s liability.

3. Staffing levels

While social distancing is critical for everyone’s health and safety, organizations must carefully evaluate how they are staffed to serve their clients, as well as in terms of abuse and molestation liability. As operations shift and on-site staff members are kept to a minimum, organizations should be careful to not inadvertently incur undue risk as they keep their stakeholders’ best interests at heart.

This is just the start of what nonprofit leaders should consider as they work to ensure they’re well-positioned to continue delivering on their mission. Most importantly, in the face of constant change, BCP should be a fluid process driven by open and ongoing conversation — one an insurance provider can help the organization expertly navigate.