4 Dangerous Trends Facing the Ceiling and Wallboard Industry

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IOA Risk Services has learned of issues facing the Ceiling & Wallboard Industry and how progressive companies are positioning themselves to be more competitive in their marketplace.

Based upon some recent rates increases that go into affect January 1, 2012, IOA Risk Services provides insights and advise on how to mitigate several dangerous trends facing your business. How have the last couple of years in business treated the Ceiling & Wallboard industry? Is it more difficult to raise revenue? Have profit margins continued to be squeezed? It has been asked, "are there companies actually out there that are being successful? And if so, what are they doing?"

Rick Dalrymple is a member of the Florida Wall & Ceiling Contractors Association. He has been a Risk Manager with expertise in the construction industry for over 30 years. In his discussions these past several months, he has heard a consistent tone of real concern of companies wondering if & how they will make it during these challenging times.

As a result, IOA Risk Services contracted with a national research firm to help them determine what is going on. More importantly, business owners are interested in information that will help them survive and thrive in this economy. So they commissioned a study called… The 4 Dangerous Trends Facing the Ceiling and Wallboard industry…to provide you with insights on what you must know if you don’t want your competitors to pass you by.

#1…Those in the Ceiling & Wallboard industry will likely see their overall insurance rates increase due to the investment climate. Insurance carriers balance their profitability from either investment income or underwriting profit. Because their investment income have been decreasing during the recession, coupled with the erosion of their underwriting profits due to adverse loss results, it’s expected that rates overall will harden (or increase), especially in the area of Workers’ Compensation.

#2 …Reports indicate that medical costs will continue to increase. To validate this point, construction companies have seen their Workers’ Compensation rates increase two (2) years in a row (FLA). Like many businesses, physicians have been adversely affected by the downturn in the economy. Some companies have seen doctors string out a patient’s medical care to help offset their lack of business, which costs contractors money.

#3…With the new rules that NCCI modified to begin in January 2013, many companies will see their experience modification factor and their subsequent Workers Comp insurance premiums increase.

#4…To add insult to injury, at a time when your profit margins are being squeezed, OSHA has increased their staff to enforce safety training activities of employers. Since 2010, OSHA staffing is up 37% and their fines are up 200%.

Employers have asked, “What can be done to control these issues?” Are there companies who have a handle on this, and if so, how are they keeping their competitive edge?

Let’s look at four (4) strategies that progressive companies are pursuing these days. #1…To avoid seeing your insurance costs skyrocket in the near future, it is important to better position your company to look and act “Best in Class.” When insurance underwriters price your account, they look at your past claims experience, but also, they look to see what policies and procedures companies have in place to avoid future claims.

#2…What is your company’s RiskScore™? Similar to a credit score (where a higher credit score = lower mortgage rates), the higher your RiskScore™, the lower your insurance rates.

#3…Companies are turning to “easy to implement” Learning Management Systems (LMS) to provide quick training on a complete list of disciplines, such as OSHA and HR compliance, Safety or wellness training. If OSHA ever knocks on your door looking for your safety program and documentation, it’s all at your fingertips to share with them if a company has access to a Learning Management System. Because of their value, there is a cost for these types of systems, but as a client, companies can receive over 200 courses at no cost.

#4…And lastly, smart companies recognize that claims can dramatically decrease their profitability and revenue. To combat this issue, many are going through a “4P” process review (Pre-Hire, Post-Offer, Pre-Claim, Post-Claim) which identifies and shores up missing policies and procedures needed to reduce claims and increase your operational efficiency. Statistics show that many claims can be avoided by simply improving your hiring practices.

You will benefit from learning more about these and other strategies that are taught that will to lower your cost of doing business.

To find out what your RiskScore is, or to schedule a free “4P” workshop or process review, or to check for qualification for Free OSHA compliance training, just call or email today.

Rick Dalrymple, CPIA, CMIP 407-998-4108, Rick(dot)Dalrymple(at)ioausa(dot)com, http://www.RichardDalrymple.com

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Rick Dalrymple, CPIA, CMIP
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