Managing Certificates of Insurance (COI) Successfully

Certificates of Insurance (COI) are an essential part of managing liability in an organization. Failing to properly obtain, inspect, and update these documents can lead to risk transfer from contractors and increased exposure to unforeseen liabilities. As George Page writes, “These certificates are an important part of doing business, and the more effectively you manage them, the less likely you are to run into problems.”

A manual process for COI management can easily become resource draining nightmare. In Why You Should Be Concerned with Certificate Tracking Gibson highlights, “… properly managing certificates of insurance poses a significant administrative challenge. It is time intensive and complex.” It is this combination, time intensity, and complexity, that creates the administrative burden frequently associated with certificate management. A closer look reveals how each component contributes to this burden.

Two Prongs of the Problem

A large part of the time-intensive nature of managing certs is due to processing emails. According to Forbes, the average office worker can spend 2.5 hours a day reading and replying to the 200 messages received daily. With potentially hundreds of contractors and subcontractors to email requests, follow-ups, etc., simply managing the email back and forth can become a full-time assignment.

The second factor, complexity, can add even more time. Each certificate needs not only to be carefully reviewed for limits, exclusions, and other criteria, it must also be tracked for expiration dates. As expiration nears, a new request for an updated COI needs to be made. When monitoring dozens or hundreds of certificates, this adds to the email burden and creates a repeating cycle of activity.

Use of color-coded spreadsheets, calendar reminders, or even sticky notes is a common approach in the attempt to keep tabs on these expirations. Yet none of these methods are scalable or efficient. As the Gibson article notes, “The most effective solution would generally be to utilize a certificate management system. These systems offer a way to take work off your desk by handling the requesting of certificates, compliance verification, and follow up on non-compliant and expiring certificates.”

How Origami Risk Improves COI Management

Origami Risk provides the same benefits as a standalone COI management system yet allows for certificate data to remain in the same system as incidents, claims, locations, and contracts. This centralized solution allows your organization to:

  • Eliminate the email burden
  • Assist with the review and compliance effort
  • Stay proactive with expirations

Breaking the Email Cycle

While numerous emails may need to be sent at different points in the cycle, the information in each one typically remains the same. By using templates for each commonly sent message, dozens of emails can be sent in seconds. Origami Risk identifies new requests, follow up messages, and certificates expiring in 30, 60, or 90 days to quickly send the right email to entire groups with a single click. And since emails and certificates can be attached to the record, viewing the full history of a certificate request is simple.

Enhancing Review and Compliance

Setting up multiple compliance profiles allows your organization to customize coverage requirements for numerous types of different projects. When entering coverage data, it is immediately checked against the profile and any deficiencies are highlighted. This adds another automatic check for compliance to the process, improving accuracy, and boosting productivity. Origami Risk allows for waivers to be granted with the explanation logged, giving your organization flexibility in creating a policy that matches your organization’s goals.

Managing COI Expirations

With dashboards and reports, staying proactive with upcoming expirations is easy. Dashboards allow you to see which expirations are most pressing, while reporting can automatically push critical information to those that need it whenever triggers are reached. This keeps everyone aware of each step of the process and promotes a transparent and responsive certificate management program.

Origami Risk makes the transition from a manual process to a fully managed system easier by allowing your organization to upload lists of contractors from spreadsheets. This eliminates rekeying data on all of your contractors and subcontractors.

COI management has earned a reputation for being an administrative drain and a time-consuming chore. With Origami Risk, however, it doesn’t have to be. Gain control of the process, improve compliance, and eliminate the headaches associated with tracking certificates.


Request a Demo

To find out more about certificate management and other solutions that can help you to streamline risk, claims, and insurance processes, complete the form below to request a demo of Origami Risk.