Broker Spotlight
Malachy McAleese

23rd July 2020

This month, we turn the spotlight on Northern Ireland and are delighted to hear from Malachy McAleese of McCarroll McConnell & Co. A local broker based in County Antrim, McCarroll McConnell & Co have been established for over 50 years.

  1. What core business lines does your brokerage cover?

We have been in business for 50 years originally focusing on personal lines, but the business over the last 10-20 years or so has swayed more too commercial. We work with very small businesses paying £150 for liability to companies paying £100K premiums.

  1. How have you found business in these unprecedented times?

Strangely enough we have been busy. When lockdown first came in we noticed a few businesses cancelling cover due to the uncertainty, but these have almost all gone back on cover again now that some degree of normality has returned.

  1. What is your current setup, are you and your staff in the office, remote working or a combination of both?

When we closed the office back in March approximately 25 staff were mobilized to work from home with a core group of about four people managing the office for postage, etc. We hope to phase some staff back to the office by the end of July, but would envisage a mixture of office and remote working for the foreseeable future.

  1. What positives - or new ways of working - have you taken from the pandemic period?

Firstly that we didn’t need to have paper files on our desk every day.  Everything didn’t need to be posted. People were happy to receive information via email saving paper and postage for the business. I think in general, if you had told us six months ago it was possible to run our business remotely we would probably have said you needed your head looked at!! The modern worker likes to have flexibility with their working environment. Not everything has to be done within the 9-5 working hours.

  1. What is your current business focus?

Assess how the business has changed and take any efficiencies gained and make the business leaner to sustain any future repeats.

  1. Which Blink products or services have been|are most beneficial to your business?

We have been big supporters of R&Q as we have struck up a good working relationship with Nick Sills (following a Blink/R&Q boozy night in Bristol!) and Instant Underwriting has also been a very useful tool recently, mostly combined liability products.

  1. If there’s one thing we’d like from Blink it’s …

I suppose this is contradicting what I’ve just said above, but maybe a broker visit to strengthen relationships and put some faces to the names would help. We probably aren’t utilising the relationship enough so maybe a full review would be helpful.

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