Many employees are now working remotely, instead of in their usual designated office space. After all, there are a variety of workspace options available for remote workers, including their own home, a cafe, or a coworking space. Working remotely for at least 1 or 2 days per week is certainly becoming the new normal!
However, this new way of working may have implications on the types of insurance businesses use for their employees. In this article, we’ll take a look at the various options available.
1. Corporate Medical insurance
Medical insurance benefits improve employee retention rate and satisfaction – this is a fact. However, medical insurance can be challenging to provide for remote employees, especially when they’re located in various different countries. Additionally, some countries may have a reliable and well-organized public healthcare system, while others may almost entirely rely on private health insurance.
For example, if your remote team is located in Hong Kong or in Singapore, medical care can often be quite expensive. Offering medical insurance coverage will certainly be seen as a great benefit and can attract more talented individuals to your organization.
An international medical plan may be needed, depending on the number of employees and the countries where they are located. The good news is, international medical plans rarely look for pre-existing conditions! However, one downside is the uncertainty over the level of coverage across all countries. It is often difficult to establish how the offered package will be adapted to different countries.
Alternatively, local medical plans could make things easier. However, this type of insurance will cover your employees only in the country where they work. If they travel, then this local plan must be supplemented by travel insurance.
Local medical insurance will certainly be more adapted to local needs, however, the benefits employees are offered in different countries may vary. Additionally, if the employee chooses to move, a new insurance plan in the new country will be needed – and any new medical conditions will be considered pre-existing conditions, likely resulting in higher insurance premiums.
You’ll have to weigh the pros and cons of local and international medical insurance plans based on your organization’s unique needs. Do you have several employees spread across several countries? An international plan may be easier.
Do you have a remote team mostly based in one country, with only one or two employees in different countries? Local plans are likely the best option here.
2. Travel insurance / medical repatriation
Travel insurance protects individuals from unexpected events that occur before or during a trip. Some of these events include:
- Trip cancellation
- Flight delay or lost luggage
- Assistance services
- Personal accident benefit
- Emergency medical expenses
- Medical repatriation to enable you to travel or return home for medical treatment
As the name indicates, travel insurance is solely for travel. Commonly, travel insurance lasts for a total of 30, 60, or 90 days depending on your specific plan. If you remain in the country you travelled to for more than your insurance period, you won’t stay protected!
3. Insurance for your organization
Remote employees bring new risk exposures to organizations. It is important to review your organization’s current insurance packages and look for any gaps in coverage based on the risks of remote working. Let’s take a look at some of the most common risks:
Employer’s liability insurance
The employer’s liability in case of work accident or disease in the office is very specific to each country. For example, businesses with employees in Hong Kong and Singapore are required by law to buy some form of insurance that compensates employees that have suffered injuries or illnesses while performing work duties. This sort of insurance typically does extend to remote workers, but it’s important to double-check the fine print.
General Liability Insurance
General Liability insurance, also known as public liability insurance, could be limited to just your office premises. This insurance covers any material damages caused by your employees – with remote workers, this includes damages to coworking space or cafe furniture. It’s extremely important that your public liability insurance is extended to all the areas in which your remote employees work.
Content insurance insures office equipment against fire, theft, water damages, and other such incidents. Similar to public liability insurance, it is often restricted to just your office premises. For remote workers, it’s essential that your content insurance covers their equipment even when they are not working from the office.
Remote working requires a dispersed IT environment, which automatically brings more vulnerability to your IT infrastructure when compared to a centralised IT network in a designated office. Full cyber insurance coverage is absolutely necessary to mitigate the risks of cyber attacks on both your network, as well as those your employees are using.
Clema Risk Solutions – a boutique insurance intermediary targeting small and medium companies
Operating in Shanghai, Singapore, and Hong Kong, Clema Risk Solutions offers digital solutions to assist organizations in developing the most appropriate insurance plans for their needs. Working out the fine details of insurance plans is difficult enough with a traditional team that works from the office. With remote employees, there are several risks that need to be accounted for. Essentially, Clema Risk Solutions saves you hours of work by evaluating your unique risk profile and presenting you with several options that match your needs.
At Clema Risk Solutions, you can:
- Book a free consultation to assess your current insurance program versus your current needs
- International medical insurance: Gain 5% off for your next international medical insurance for your businesses or for a group of individuals
- Business insurance: Gain discounts from 5% to 10% for a wide variety of businesses insurance covers
If you’d like to learn more about remote working and how you can implement flexible work arrangements in your organization, contact us at FLYDESK.