Resilience skills help businesses in crises, such as during the pandemic, but also outside of those times. Resilience is being able to evaluate, identify, and address challenges as swiftly as possible to achieve a good outcome.
It’s good to know Australian SMEs have more support to deal with whatever disaster lands their way.
Govt invests in resilience projects
Australian governments announced in June they would invest $400M to help protect communities at risk of extreme weather impacts. The Federal Government is matching states’ and territories’ $200M pledge to fund 187 resilience and mitigation projects. They were the first round of the five-year $1 billion Disaster Ready Fund, which replaced the Emergency Response Fund.
And that’s good news for you as an insurance policy holder. Those projects were selected for their capacity to reduce premium pricing and the protection gap, says the Insurance Council of Australia.
Find out more about government funding:
- Bushfire community recovery and resilient fund (NSW & Federal)
- Resilient homes (NSW & Federal)
- Resilience funding programs (Queensland)
- Strong and Resilient Communities (Federal Department of Social Services)
- Protecting our Communities (Disaster Resilience) Program (Federal)
- Future Drought Fund (Federal Dept of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry)
- Supply Chain Resilience (Business.gov.au)
- Agriculture Climate Resilience Fund (WA), and more.
Be sure to check what’s happening in your region, state, or territory.
Australia’s recent disasters
Why was this pledge needed?
According to the Climate Council, Australia is experiencing an era of unnatural disasters including rain events, floods, bushfires, storms and the occasional earthquake. It estimates every Australian household is paying $1,532 on average extra due to extreme weather events over the past year. That’s 73% up on the ten-year average. Those extra costs arise through higher food prices and insurance premiums as well as repairs to essential infrastructure.
You can check this government website for possible funding options if a disaster has affected your business.
Resilience through business prep
With the spate of disasters increasing, it pays to bolster your business approach to resilience. Consider these tips:
- Update your business continuity plan
- Ensure it details how to prepare, respond, recover from, and communicate regarding cyclone, storm surge, severe storm, flood, bushfire, drought, etc
- Know what to add to your emergency kit
- Refresh your knowledge about emergency alerts, warnings and contacts, and
- Check you’ve got what you need to respond to natural disasters.
Prep your business for possible disasters quarterly, not just yearly. Be mindful wind speeds of just 60km p/h can turn outdoor items into missiles that injure people, damage cars, and structures. Learn when peak storm season arrives in your region.
Understanding business interruption insurance
Business interruption insurance is a type of insurance coverage designed to protect businesses from financial losses resulting from unexpected disruptions or interruptions to their normal operations as a result of an insured event.
The insurance typically covers the loss of net income that a business would have earned if the disruption hadn’t occurred. It helps businesses bridge the financial gap during the time they cannot operate at full capacity.
The policy may also cover fixed costs, such as rent, utilities, and certain operational expenses.
Business interruption insurance may also cover additional expenses incurred by the business to mitigate the impact of the interruption. For example, expenses related to relocating to temporary premises, expedited delivery of critical supplies, or increased advertising to regain customers.
We can help you review your current package of policies to see if you have gaps in business interruption cover. Often, you’ll have this protection for insurance for business premises, contents, public liability, and professional indemnity, but it’s best to check.